College hosts lecture on improving sustainability of logistics systems

The Penn State Berks Center for Creativity, Entrepreneurship and Economic Development (CEED) and the Institute of Industrial Engineering (IIE)?Reading Chapter are hosting a lecture titled ?A Vision to Improve the Economical, Environmental and Social Sustainability of our Logistics System? by Russell D. Meller, Ph.D., Vice President of Research and Development at Fortna Inc., on Wednesday, January 28, 2015. The lecture will be held from 6:45 p.m.?7:45 p.m., followed by a question-and-answer session in room 244 of the Gaige Technology and Business Innovation Building at Penn State Berks. Space is limited; contact Dr. Sadan Kulturel-Konak at 610-396-6137 or via e-mail at [email protected] to reserve your seat.

According to the abstract, ?In the U.S. and Europe, truck trailers are only half full, which has enormous economic and environmental consequences. In addition, long-haul truck drivers, working in an industry with an annual turnover rate approaching 200%, are on the road for two weeks at a time, leading to significant social consequences. We ask: Is there a better way to design our logistics system to address the Global Logistics Sustainability Grand Challenge? Our answer: Yes, and our vision for a better logistics system design is called the Physical Internet (PI). The PI has been conceptualized as an open global logistics system founded on physical, digital and operational interconnectivity through encapsulation, interfaces and protocols. The aim of the PI is to enable an efficient and sustainable logistics web. The focus of the talk will be on research into the PI where we attempted to quantify the logistics system gain potential of the PI using real-world data.?

In his position as V.P. for Research and Development at Fortna Inc., Meller is responsible for all aspects of the Fortna proprietary toolset, which the company uses to design, engineer and implement complex distribution centers. He joined Fortna after a 20-year career as an educator, researcher, and part-time consultant in distribution center design.

No stranger to academics, Meller served as a faculty member at Auburn University, Virginia Tech, Graz University of Technology in Austria, and the University of Arkansas, where he most recently held the James and Marie Hefley Professorship in Logistics and Entrepreneurship. His research and teaching focus were in facility logistics.

He has received many awards for his teaching and research, including IIE?s Baker Award, IIE?s Technical Innovation Award, and the Reed-Apple Award from the Material Handling Education Foundation. He received an NSF CAREER Award, was named a Rainmaker by DCVelocity and is a Fellow of IIE. For eight years he led the largest applied research center for logistics and distribution systems, the Center for Excellence in Logistics and Distribution (CELDi). During that time, CELDi was the largest applied research center in logistics and distribution and consisted of nine partner universities and over thirty member organizations including Walmart, Sam?s Club, Medline, Boeing, and UPS, as well as military and government organizations.

For more information, contact Dr. Sadan Kulturel-Konak at 610-396-6137 or via e-mail at [email protected].