PTV xTerritory 1.20.1 Blog Series #1 – Tour Estimator

xTerritory-Server-Icon_Puzzleteil-grau_64pWith the PTV xServer 1.20.1 Release the PTV xTerritory provides now a quick way to estimate the route travel times within a territory. And this without using the PTV xTour Server.

Different periods

The output format (time in seconds) can be split in service period and driving period. The service period is the activity value of a location interpreted as time in seconds spent for providing service by an employee at a particular location. A driving Period is the server calculated time from one location to another within a territory. It is estimated by the average distance to a location’s nearest neighbouring locations.                                          The estimated driving time from a territory’s center to the territory itself is the average distance to the territory center’s nearest five locations.

Why is this useful?

  • It is very difficult to consider driving periods between locations and service periods at locations in the tour estimation for exactly one territory. For this reason tour estimates on basis of the PTV xTerritory Server are helpful to plan better calculated tours with the PTV xTour Server. So it can be regarded as a prior step for a more fine-grained tour calculation by the PTV xTour server with many more parameters.
  • The PTV xTerritory Server is able to interpret activity values as service periods. For example you can use the activity value as a service period for a service employee who provides at certain service at a location or for a truck driver who unloads certain goods at a location.
  • The PTV xTerritory server allows constraining tour periods by setting a single TourPeriodLimit for each territory. With this, a service tour period can be limited to, for example 8 hours of a typical work day.

How it works

tour_estimationEstimating tour periods for territories is a concept by which activity values of locations are interpreted as service periods, e.g. working hours of a service employee, and driving periods between locations are summed up. This sum then represents an estimated round trip time for a tour through all locations of a territory. This concept provides the basic mechanism for planning, distributing and changing territories according to a tour estimate. It can be regarded as a prior step for a more fine-grained tour calculation by the PTV xTour server with many more parameters. In general, for an estimate of a round trip tour period within a territory, service times and driving times are the only time contributions that are considered. The driving period from a territory center to the territory itself is not considered by the PTV xTerritory’s tour estimation. Nonetheless, this particular driving time is provided within the territory summary as additional value.

Tour estimation and activity limits

Setting limits with the PTV xTerritory server is possible for each territory and the three use cases: territory planning, location assignment and change territories.                       Limiting the duration of a tour period for a territory can have a major impact on the calculation results in all use cases. However, when limits are applied, it can become impossible to find a valid calculation result. If this occurs, more reasonable values for the limits themselves or other planning parameters within the planningProfile need to be considered.                                                                                                                           For further information of activity limits read the next post of our PTV xTerritory 1.20.1 Blog Series.

Additionally to this post you can read its use case documenation here.