Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Industrial and Manufacturing Systems Engineering

First Advisor

Lizhi Wang


This thesis consists of two separate studies. The first part is for land allocation between

grain crops and bioenergy crops. The second part is for identifying most vulnerable links in a transportation network. Optimization models are used in both studies.

The first part of this thesis focuses on analyzing farmers' land allocation between bioenergy crops and grain crops and the impact of bioenergy crop contract price on farmers' land allocation. An optimization model for a centralized farmer is proposed. The model simulates farmers' objective by maximizing their prots. Under the consideration of crop rotation constraints, farmers' land allocation is optimized. A case study including corn, soybean and switchgrass for Iowa is conducted. Our model can compute the threshold of switchgrass contract price, which can provide guidance in contract negotiation between farmers and bioenergy producers.

The second part of the thesis concerns identifying the most vulnerable links in a transportation network. The problem can be viewed as a game between an "attacker" and network users. The attacker represents natural disasters or man-made accidents that could reduce network capacity, whereas network users decide their travel patterns in response to the attacker's action. By maximizing the attacker's disruption to the network, our model can identify the most vulnerable links in the network, which provides the most effective strategy to strengthen the robustness of the network. We conducted a case study for a sixteen-link network with two demand scenarios and the most vulnerable links are found. For that particular network, reducing the most vulnerable 0.7% of total capacity doubles the system travel time. Therefore, maintaining full capacity on these most vulnerable links is crucial for the system.


Copyright Owner

Liu Su



File Format


File Size

47 pages