container ships

The high-profile area of Logistics is concerned with the theoretical framework for efficient, adaptive, and flexible logistics control systems. Working in close collaboration with renowned industrial partners like the BLG Logistics Group and Daimler, it develops practical applications especially in the areas of transport and production logistics. Research in this area involves the participation of 15 subject areas embedded in four different faculties (Physics/Electronic Engineering, Mathematics/Computer Sciences, Production Engineering, and Economics) and two non-university research institutes – the Bremen Institute of Production and Logistics (BIBA) and the Institute of Shipping Economics and Logistics (ISL). The participants have joined together to form LogDynamics (Bremen Research Cluster for Dynamics in Logistics). The main focus of LogDynamics’ research is the analysis of problems and the development of solutions within the context of the constantly growing dynamics of logistics processes. The goal is to identify, describe, and model the dynamics inherent to logistics processes and value-added chains, as well as to research and develop all aspects of new dynamic structures with the aid of innovative technologies. Precisely how the interfaces between the individual logistics fields should be shaped presents LogDynamics with multifaceted lines of inquiry calling for multidisciplinary efforts with a long-term research horizon. Relevant topics include, for example, the development of strategies for dealing with situations characterized by extreme time pressure or complexity, as well as with unforeseeable events. Within this context, the investigation of methods of autonomous control to improve the synchronization of flows of materials and information presents a promising approach. An important focus is on aspects surrounding the organization and management of logistics systems, as well as on operative logistics.


The high-profile area exhibits high levels of application orientation and subsequently calls for accordant cooperation on research with logistics enterprises. Research topics include intelligent means of transportation, the transparency of information in logistics and production networks, cognitive robotics for the automation of logistics processes, real-time monitoring of the transport and handling of large consignments, process control in cargo loading and cargo-loading management, and status-oriented maintenance. Within the overall context, it should not be forgotten that with its ports the Federal State of Bremen is the second largest logistics location in Germany. With its research on the “intelligent container” – a collaborative project coordinated in Bremen within a BMBF innovation alliance – the high-profile area also creates linkages to the two high-profile areas of Materials Science and Information – Cognition – Communication. The University of Bremen has created the LogDynamics Lab to function as a demonstration center for the applications developed in this area. The Lab pursues the goal of transferring the results of research into practice and ensuring an exchange of ideas with industry, making it possible to test new products and applications in an application-oriented environment. In so doing it employs especially mobile technologies to facilitate the identification, localization, communication, sensory systems, acting (robotics) and process control. The Lab carries out numerous investigations and pilot studies for enterprises in the sectors of automobile manufacturing and aviation, as well as for the textile and beverage industries.

LogDynamics Lab

The international attraction of this high-profile area is illustrated in particular by the interest shown on the part of international young researchers. Young scholars and scientists – 80 percent of them from abroad – conduct research in the university-funded international graduate school “Dynamics in Logistics”. In 2011 the graduate school received an award from acatech, the German Academy of Engineering Sciences, for its global networking activities, which are described as exemplary for PhD projects in the engineering sciences. Close cooperation is pursued with Stony Brook University (USA), Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina (Brazil) and Pusan National University (Korea). Moreover, the collaborative research center integrates two sub-projects from the USA (with the University of Wisconsin at Madison and George Mason University).

In close collaboration with the Engineering Sciences, the Computer Sciences, and Economics, the high-profile area investigates new developments in maritime economy and logistics, as well as the logistical challenges presented by complex structures, such as the construction of offshore wind parks – here, the university is positioned as one of the three leading locations of logistics research in Germany.

Selected publications

Dashkovskiy S., Rueffer BS., Wirth FR (2007). An ISS small gain theorem for general networks. MATHE-MATICS OF CONTROL SIGNALS AND SYSTEMS 19 (2): 93 – 122, doi: 10.1007/s00498-007-0014-8

Dashkovskiy SN, Rueffer BS, Wirth FR (2010). Small Gain Theorems for Large Scale Systems and Con-struction of ISS Lyapunov Functions. SIAM JOURNAL ON CONTROL AND OPTIMIZATION 48 (6): 4089 – 4118, doi: 10.1137/090746483

Donner R, Scholz-Reiter B, Hinrichs U (2008). Nonlinear characterization of the performance of produc-tion and logistics networks. JOURNAL OF MANUFACTURING SYSTEMS 27 (2): 84   99   doi: 10.1016/j.jmsy.2008.10.001

Huelsmann M, Grapp J, Li Y (2008). Strategic adaptivity in global supply chains - Competitive advantage by autonomous cooperation. Conference: 11th International Symposium on Logistics, Beijing. INTER-NATIONAL JOURNAL OF PRODUCTION ECONOMICS 114 (1): 14 - 26   doi: 10.1016/j.ijpe.2007.09.009

Jedermann R, Behrens C, Westphal D et al. (2006). Applying autonomous sensor systems in logistics - Combining sensor networks, RFIDs and software agents Conference: 19th European Conference on Solid-State Transducers, Barcelona. SENSORS AND ACTUATORS A-PHYSICAL 132 (1) Special Issue: SI: 370 – 375, doi: 10.1016/j.sna.2006.02.008

Jedermann R, Ruiz-Garcia L, Lang W (2009). Spatial temperature profiling by semi-passive RFID loggers for perishable food transportation. COMPUTERS AND ELECTRONICS IN AGRICULTURE  65 (2): 145 – 154, doi: 10.1016/j.compag.2008.08.006

Krajewska M, Kopfe, H (2006). Collaborating freight forwarding enterprises - Request allocation and profit sharing. OR SPECTRUM 28 (3): 301 – 317, doi: 10.1007/s00291-005-0031-2

Krajewska MA, Kopfer H (2009). Transportation planning in freight forwarding companies Tabu search algorithm for the integrated operational transportation planning problem. EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF OPERATIONAL RESEARCH 197 (2) 741 – 751, doi: 10.1016/j.ejor.2008.06.042

Krajewska MA, Kopfer H, Laporte G et al. (2008). Horizontal cooperation among freight carriers: re-quest allocation and profit sharing. JOURNAL OF THE OPERATIONAL RESEARCH SOCIETY 59 (11): 1483 – 1491, doi: 10.1057/palgrave.jors.2602489

McKelvey B, Wycisk C, Hülsmann M (2009). Designing an electronic auction market for complex 'smart parts' logistics: Options based on LeBaron's computational stock market. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PRODUCTION ECONOMICS 120 (2) Special Issue: SI: 476 – 494, doi: 10.1016/j.ijpe.2009.03.006

Schoenberger J, Kopfer H (2009). Online decision making and automatic decision model adaptation. Source: COMPUTERS & OPERATIONS RESEARCH 36 (6): 1740 – 1750, doi: 10.1016/j.cor.2008.04.009

Scholz-Reiter B, De Beer C, Freitag M et al. (2008). Bio-inspired and pheromone-based shop-floor con-trol. Conference: 3rd International Conference on Digital Enterprise Technology, Setubal. INTERNA-TIONAL JOURNAL OF COMPUTER INTEGRATED MANUFACTURING 21 (2): 201 – 205, doi: 10.1080/09511920701607840

Scholz-Reiter B, Freitag M (2007). Autonomous processes in assembly systems. Conference: 57th Gen-eral Assembly of CIRP, Dresden. CIRP ANNALS-MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY 56 (2): 712 – 729, doi: 10.1016/j.cirp.2007.10.002

Scholz-Reiter B, Freitag M, de Beer C et al. (2005). Modelling dynamics of autonomous logistic process-es: Discrete-event versus continuous approaches. CIRP ANNALS-MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY 54 (1): 413 – 416, doi: 10.1016/S0007-8506(07)60134-6

Scholz-Reiter B, Goerges M, Philipp T (2009). Autonomously controlled production systems-Influence of autonomous control level on logistic performance. CIRP ANNALS-MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY 58 (1): 395 – 398, doi: 10.1016/j.cirp.2009.03.011

Scholz-Reiter B, Kolditz J, Hildebrandt T (2009). Engineering autonomously controlled logistic systems. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PRODUCTION RESEARCH 47 (6): 1449 - 1468 doi: 10.1080/00207540701581791

Scholz-Reiter B, Rekersbrink H, Goerges M (2010). Dynamic flexible flow shop problems-Scheduling heuristics vs. autonomous control. Conference: 60th General Assembly of CIRP, Pisa. CIRP ANNALS-MANUFACTURING TECHNOLOGY 59 (1): 465 – 468, doi: 10.1016/j.cirp.2010.03.030

Windt K, Boese F, Philipp T (2008). Autonomy in production logistics: Identification, characterisation and application. Conference: 3rd International Conference on Manufacturing Research, Cranfield. RO-BOTICS AND COMPUTER-INTEGRATED MANUFACTURING 24 (4): 572 – 578, doi: 10.1016/j.rcim.2007.07.008

Windt K, Philipp T, Boese F, (2008). Complexity cube for the characterization of complex production systems. Conference: 3rd International Conference on Digital Enterprise Technology, Setubal. INTER-NATIONAL JOURNAL OF COMPUTER INTEGRATED MANUFACTURING 21 (2): 195 – 200, doi: 10.1080/09511920701607725

Wycisk C, McKelvey B, Hulsmann M (2008). "Smart parts" supply networks as complex adaptive sys-tems: analysis and implications. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PHYSICAL DISTRIBUTION & LOGISTICS MANAGEMENT 38 (2): 108 – 125, doi: 10.1108/09600030810861198