Intermodal freight transport network designs and their implication for transhipment technologies
Journal article, 2007
Six principles for operation of the rail part of intermodal rail freight transport systems are described: direct link, corridor, hub-and-spoke, connected hubs, static routes, and dynamic routes. The first part is a theoretical discussion of the characteristics of the traffic designs. The theory is then applied to intermodal freight transport by comparing the terminology in this article with that used in the scientific literature and by analysing how each traffic design affects the need for terminal performance. The discussion includes a classification of existing intermodal transport technologies and an analysis of how well developed tech-nologies meet the demands. It is concluded that there is a sufficient supply of technologies, but some need to be taken further than the current blueprint phase and prove their viability in technical and economic terms.