The objective of the study was to find the developments giving the least total cost of transporting all the British Steel Corporation's foreign ore requirements from the loading ports to the user works. The basic method adopted was to split the project into two stages: 1. The first stage to consist of a 'snapshot view' of one year in the future, in which a comparison of the transport costs of foreign ore could be made without considering the existing facilities. Limiting the study to the proposed deep-water ports ensured the identification of the most attractive combinations of port developments for the future and the factors most crucial to the outcome. In essence, the problem consisted of balancing the high capital costs of new ports against the operating costs of internal transport. 2. The second stage to carry out the detailed planning of the investments and operations through time so as to enable the best decisions to be made on each investment. The implementation of results for both stages of the study consisted in the managers agreeing to the conclusions. Two simple but vital lessons were learnt about obtaining this agreement: 1. The importance of a long feed-back stage between obtaining initial results and reporting conclusions. 2. The absolute necessity of making sure that the assumptions, factors and numbers used in the models are correct and agreed to be so. In the long-range planning stage of the project, around a month was taken up with repeated re-runs of the computer programs and presentations of the results in response to changes in data and managers' requests for answers to questions of the 'what if' variety before the first report was issued. As a result of this feed-back and the consequent amount of evidence produced complete implementation was obtained in that the managers were confident that the conclusions were the correct ones. As a result of the introduction of deep-water ports, it seems likely that the BSC will make an average saving of 13s per ton on the cost of its ore imports. As these imports are expected to rise to twenty-five million tons by 1975, the total cost saving in the mid-seventies will probably be 16 million English pounds per annum.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Article based on a paper given at the 1970 Annual Conference of the Operational Research Society
  • Corporate Authors:

    IPC Science and Technology Press Limited

    IPC House, 32 High Street
    Guildford, Surrey  England 
  • Authors:
    • Beattie, C J
    • Brown, A P
    • Norris, M E
  • Publication Date: 0

Media Info

  • Pagination: p. 55-61
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00028996
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Mar 28 1974 12:00AM