A FASTER ROUTE TO GREENER PROFITS
They may be yet to apply their specialist skills to the real world, but as many Australian companies are discovering, the benefits of linking to the research capability of PhD students are limitless.
One of Australia’s largest privately owned freight forwarding companies, Visa Global, reaped the benefits after AMSIIntern student, Yi Chen, helped solve the classic travelling salesman problem: how to get from A to B in the least amount of time and energy?
With online sales soaring, the logistics company wanted to find more efficient ways to deliver goods, reduce their carbon footprint, and grow profits. They needed to optimise their routes.
As a Federation University mathematics PhD, Yi Chen, is all too familiar with the challenges of optimisation problems. The fun part, he says, is seeing optimisation give better numbers – and in this case better profits.
It wasn’t just VISA Global that profited from the AMSIIntern program.
“The internship provided me with a really great opportunity to apply my studies to solve practical real-world problems,” says Yi Chen. “And it helped me form clearer career goals. It was exciting to generate results that have the potential to significantly reduce VISA Global’s costs and carbon emissions.”
With NAB reporting online sales growth of 11.3 per cent over the last 12 months, VISA Global turned to AMSIIntern to improve efficiency of their fleet.
“The results of Yi’s work were very impressive, and provided VISA with a verifiable approach to solving the problem, with potential gains far in advance of what had been hoped at the outset,” explains Marcus Denny, Manager of the Systems
Design Division at VISA Global.
“Improvement in efficiency of vehicle movements will result in a direct and significant saving to VISA Global, both in terms of wear and tear on vehicles, as well as fuel consumption, with the simultaneous benefit of lowering VISA Global’s
carbon footprint,” Marcus concludes.
Yi’s story is just one of many highlighting the innovative and sustainable benefits of AMSIIntern. Working across all industries and disciplines, the program connects industry to specialist research expertise from over 30 leading Australian universities. With a focus on short-term research challenges, PhD students and experienced academic mentors work with industry partners, such as VISA Global, to deliver rapid, value-add innovation solutions.