Decision aid

Michaël Schyns is Professor at HEC, the Management School of the University of Liege.
His background is in Computer Sciences and in Management Sciences.
His global field of research is optimization of business processes for improved decision making. He is especially interested by:
New digital technologies for business (especially Virtual and Augmented Reality)
Machine Learning/Artificial intelligence and Business Analytics
Operations Research (combinatorial optimization)
Combining these elements to create Digital Twins

Some specific projects below. See also the list of project of the AR/VR lab and the publications list.

Weight and Balance

We have designed an automatic and interactive mathematical model (Operations Research) providing solutions for the optimal loading of merchandise intended for transport by air. By taking into account a large range of constraints related to the industry it promises to save a lot of time and result in less fuel being used. The model is interesting both from an economic and ecological point of view. More about this research (first work)

- The Aviation Applications Section of INFORMS 2016: best PhD dissertation (Virginie Lurkin)
- AGIFORS (Airline Groupe of the International Federation of Operational Research Society) 2014 Dubai: Anna Valicek Award (best innovative research).
- AGIFORS 2013 Amsterdam : best talk

Hackathon WeCargo

Year: 2019

24h hackathon contest organized by Liege Airport:
"The objective is to bring bright minds together and surround them by industry experts to come up with a solution to an identified problem within 24 hours of intensive work. Get outside your comfort zone and help to shape the future of the air cargo industry in a fun atmosphere.
The winners will get the opportunity to fly to China to present their solution to Alibaba’s headquarter."
12 teams (schools, IT and business intelligence companies), 24h...

Our research team developed in 24h a GSE Pooling solution: a mathematical model forecasting airport equipment use in order to optimize it, based on data measurement.
We were awarded the 1st prize!

SpeakInVR - Digital Twin MeetingRoom

Field experts: E. Etienne, AL Leclercq, F. Peters, A. Remacle, M. Schyns
Development: Service Informatique de Gestion
Year: 2020

SpeakInVR was originally an extensive multi-disciplinary research project. In the context of her PhD thesis, Ms. Etienne has for objective to create a smart learning environment. Candidates will be able to train their public speaking skills. With the help of managers, psychologists and speech therapists, a semi- or fully-automatic custom feedback will be delivered. Traditional as well as artificial intelligence tools are being developed to instantly give a feedback to the candidate. The environment is realistic. The virtual audience will react automatically to the orator's speech. Our research will first analyse what are the best attitudes for the audience (and their impact on the speaker) as well as the level of realism to attain in order to strengthen the sentiment of presence.

ASLB Digital Twin
at Liège Airport

Partners: ASLB (JM Urbani - R. Ramkissoon) - Liège Airport
One of Pr. Schyns' fields of research is the domain of air transportation. It so happens that SIG is based in Liège where we can find Liège Airport, a renowned European cargo airport, base of operations for FedEx and Alibaba. Liège Airport and the companies operating within its walls, including ASLB, are faced with a plethora of challenges with costly material and potentially dangerous. What better way to test your theories on an actual airport? In addition to the plane cockpit and the warehouses, Liège Airport and its numerous resources are currently being digitally modelled. Want to drive a luggage cart to bring ULDs (containers) to an aircraft? Will you be able to operate the high loader to fill this aircraft? Would you like to simulate an emergency situation without hindering real airport activity?...
A complete Digital Twin of ASLB processes is in preparation. It will allow to monitor in real time, in VR or through computer dashboards, several processes and to provide (artificial) intelligent feedbacks.

(3D) bin packing optimization of a container

Optimal packing of containers (ULDs) in particular for air transport.
Research topic: optimization of a packing "policy" via artificial intelligence (Deep Reinforcement Learning) and operations research techniques.
Goals: training and decision making aid for on-site operators (guided by an augmented reality headset).