They probably never drove a plow truck before!

Discussion in 'Commercial Snow Removal' started by grandview, Feb 18, 2008.

  1. grandview

    grandview PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 14,313

    Always looks good on paper until some dumb ass is driving in front of you!

    Engineers Shovel Their Way through Snow-Plowing Problem
    MU Researchers Develop Methods to Optimize Snow-plowing Operations

    Jan. 30, 2008

    Story Contact: Christian Basi, (573) 882-4430,

    COLUMBIA, Mo. – The average person probably doesn’t realize that snowplowing is a complex operation involving the interaction of several variables. To simplify this process, two University of Missouri engineers have developed models that integrate all the factors in an effort to make the service more efficient, while reducing time and resources.

    The pilot study focused on the local plowing winter maintenance operations in Boone County, Mo. The county has 23 snow-plow trucks parked in five depots across the county. The target plowing time is two hours. Using engineering principles and assuming an average Missouri snowfall of three to four inches, the MU engineers optimized the snow-plowing service using five depots and only 16 trucks and beat the target time by a half-hour. This new method has the potential to cut costs by up to 30 percent.

    “There’s been a lot of work on the individual components of snow-plowing routes, but never has there been a study that connected all the components,” said James Noble, associate professor of industrial and manufacturing systems engineering in the College of Engineering. “We developed a mathematical model for the snow-plowing problem, but it is so complex that it would take a computer many years to solve it for realistic-sized problems. We then developed a simplified approach to the mathematical model so we could create a solution for this problem.”

    This method could be used for scenarios other than Missouri snowplowing. Other states could apply this method with their own individual variables to optimize the operations for their particular state. The routing problem is generic, and similar models could be used to optimize highway stripping, mowing and herbicide operations, Noble said.

    “This study focused on an average snowfall for Missouri,” said Wooseung Jang, associate professor in the department of industrial and manufacturing systems engineering in the College of Engineering. “A bigger or smaller snow would be a different issue. This method may not apply to California or Canada, but will work for other Midwestern states.”

    The next phase of the project is currently underway and is expanding the model to other counties in Missouri. The Midwest Transportation Consortium and the Missouri Department of Transportation provided funding and participated in this study.

  2. fireball

    fireball Veteran
    Messages: 595

    looks good until that 82 dodge diplomat with bald tires slides perpindicular to your plow blocking your forward progress up the hill.

    Tell those two hot shots that their paychecks are dependent on the accuracy of their program and see if they come up with the same savings
  3. hydro_37

    hydro_37 PlowSite Veteran
    from iowa
    Messages: 3,755

    The study probabily cost the state $500K and will take years of "time saving" plowing to pay for
  4. Kingwinter

    Kingwinter Senior Member
    Messages: 217

    yea too bad when 4 of their rigs break down, half the city doesn't get plowed, including the enginer's street.
  5. veggin psd

    veggin psd Senior Member
    Messages: 319

    I have a non-computer generated anaylsis for that county and the service is free.........Hire good, hard working people and provide them with well maintained equipment capable of doing the job and leave the damn computer geeks out of it. Probably still cheaper in the long run.........:dizzy:

    I can only imagine what that study cost the tax payers...........:realmad:
  6. LTL

    LTL Senior Member
    Messages: 213

    Do they really get that much snow in Missouri to warrant a "study" on snow plowing? Dumb if you ask me, just go out and plow, end of story and a lot cheaper for taxpayers.
  7. kcplowmata

    kcplowmata Senior Member
    from kc
    Messages: 174

    well thats just gay