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KTPAFlyer
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Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:23 pm

Hello A.net,

Always wondered why the Superhub is so busy at night if the temperature is not that hot during the day. I've heard that there is a plane arriving or departing every 40 seconds during these hours! Is it a logistical or physical reason for peak rush during night hours?
Last edited by KTPAFlyer on Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.
 
2Holer4Longhaul
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:23 pm

Less pax planes to compete with for slots (in some airports) and airspace at night
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berari
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:27 pm

KTPAFlyer wrote:
Hello A.net,

Always wondered why the Superhub is so busy at night if the temperature is not that hot during the day. I've heard that there is a plane arriving or departing every 40 seconds during these hours! Is it a logistical or physical reason for peak rush during night hours?


Think about the business that Fedex is in: overnight delivery. The packages need to be sorted some time between day 1 and day 2, and guess what, that's at night. So all flights come in from all over the place to drop parcels, parcels get sorted, then the plans fly off to destinations for delivery.
 
sw733
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:31 pm

It's all related to the business they do, as stated above. UPS is the same. You send something from Detroit at 4pm that needs to be in Seattle at 9am tomorrow...only one way to get it there - an late flight from Detroit to Memphis (or Indianapolis) and a late flight from there to Seattle.
 
777PHX
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Thu Jul 27, 2017 11:28 pm

Business is done during the day. Air packages are shipped before 5PM. Those packages fly from their origin to the connecting hub during the night to make their connecting flights to their final destination before morning so they can be sorted and put on vehicle for delivery.
 
BENAir01
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 12:21 am

It also helps that at some airports there is less traffic at night. So it's great when FedEx can land planes at EWR at 12am and leave at 5am because there is less traffic (although EWR is still busy at those times.)
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:03 am

Well you don't need experience or age to appreciate the nature of business that FedEx or UPS are in to understand why their hubs are busy overnight rather than daytime hours.
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coronado
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 2:45 am

The original tag line used by Fedex in its advertising sums it all up: When it absolutely positively has to be there overnight! sums up the model of why Memphis (and Indy as a back up hub) and Oakland as a transpacific hub are so busy in the middle of the night.. When their clients offices and business locations close at 5 or 6pm, Fedex goes to work. Scenario: The customer is trying finish sending a prototype sample by 4:59pm because the Fedex last pick up is at 5pm, in order to get that pouch delivered from Minneapolis to San Diego by 10 am (or 8am for an extra fee!) the next morning for a production approval. Amazing what Fred Smith created starting with some old Lear Jets. Google the words 'Fred Smith overnight delivery' and you can read the stories behind his college papers ''inventing'' the overnight delivery business.
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 2:51 am

coronado wrote:
The original tag line used by Fedex in its advertising sums it all up: When it absolutely positively has to be there overnight! sums up the model of why Memphis (and Indy as a back up hub) and Oakland as a transpacific hub are so busy in the middle of the night.. When their clients offices and business locations close at 5 or 6pm, Fedex goes to work. Scenario: The customer is trying finish sending a prototype sample by 4:59pm because the Fedex last pick up is at 5pm, in order to get that pouch delivered from Minneapolis to San Diego by 10 am (or 8am for an extra fee!) the next morning for a production approval. Amazing what Fred Smith created starting with some old Lear Jets. Google the words 'Fred Smith overnight delivery' and you can read the stories behind his college papers ''inventing'' the overnight delivery business.

This business plan was what his thesis in Harvard Business School was all about, and to think he got a C because his professor said it wouldn't work!
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maxpower1954
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:31 am

Fed Ex didn't start with "old Lear Jets". They started with factory fresh Fan Jet Falcons custom configured by Dassault for Fed Ex.
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:56 am

coronado wrote:
The original tag line used by Fedex in its advertising sums it all up: When it absolutely positively has to be there overnight! sums up the model of why Memphis (and Indy as a back up hub) and Oakland as a transpacific hub are so busy in the middle of the night.. When their clients offices and business locations close at 5 or 6pm, Fedex goes to work. Scenario: The customer is trying finish sending a prototype sample by 4:59pm because the Fedex last pick up is at 5pm, in order to get that pouch delivered from Minneapolis to San Diego by 10 am (or 8am for an extra fee!) the next morning for a production approval. Amazing what Fred Smith created starting with some old Lear Jets. Google the words 'Fred Smith overnight delivery' and you can read the stories behind his college papers ''inventing'' the overnight delivery business.

FX is more than just night, with their military and postal service contracts. And they did not start with old Learjets. If you act like an expert at least give correct facts.
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 5:09 am

KTPA, You may have noticed that the major cargo hubs in the USA are not only busiest at night, but that they are centrally located on the North American continent. FedEx has their hub at Memphis (MEM). The UPS Worldport is at Louisville International Airport (SDF). DHL's air freight hub was originally located at the Cincinnati / Northern Kentucky Airport (CVG). For awhile, DHL, along Airborne and Kalitta, moved their hub from CVG to the Wilmington Air Park (ILN) in Wilmington, Ohio, but since then that entire operation has returned to CVG. And, Amazon's airline, Amazon Prime Air, has announced that they, too, will build their megahub at CVG. (It's a good thing that CVG has both the runways and the acreage [hectares] to accommodate all of this growth & expansion!) Anyway, just look at a map of the Lower 48 & you will see how it makes sense for all of the air freight hubs to be centrally located, which makes it possible for most of North America to be within reach overnight.
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:30 am

Three words: next day air.
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 9:50 am

Both FedEx and UPS impress the hell out of me, as does any enormous logistics based company who pull it all off 99% of the time. That even goes for passenger airlines who have feed and service their "cargo"...but "I" who know nothing would deduce that the only hours that would work for their logistics model and brand promise is plane after plane taking off all night long.
The one question this thread raises for me is noise. With heavy aircraft taking off every minute through the night, what is the noise pollution like for residents near MEM and others?
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 10:57 am

berari wrote:
KTPAFlyer wrote:
Hello A.net,

Always wondered why the Superhub is so busy at night if the temperature is not that hot during the day. I've heard that there is a plane arriving or departing every 40 seconds during these hours! Is it a logistical or physical reason for peak rush during night hours?


Think about the business that Fedex is in: overnight delivery. The packages need to be sorted some time between day 1 and day 2, and guess what, that's at night. So all flights come in from all over the place to drop parcels, parcels get sorted, then the plans fly off to destinations for delivery.


Yeah, I'm actually surprised this question was even asked. It's seems totally "well duh!" to me. Next-day service with collection and delivery during office hours means it *HAS* to be overnight for sorting and distribution.
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TerminalD
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 11:07 am

Because it absolutely, positively has to be there overnight. (TM)
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 11:17 am

VC10er wrote:
Both FedEx and UPS impress the hell out of me, as does any enormous logistics based company who pull it all off 99% of the time. That even goes for passenger airlines who have feed and service their "cargo"...but "I" who know nothing would deduce that the only hours that would work for their logistics model and brand promise is plane after plane taking off all night long.
The one question this thread raises for me is noise. With heavy aircraft taking off every minute through the night, what is the noise pollution like for residents near MEM and others?


I live right under the flight path of IND, and although I don't live close to IND, there is a period from 11-1am that is pretty noisy...
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floridaflyboy
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 12:16 pm

Midwestindy wrote:
VC10er wrote:
Both FedEx and UPS impress the hell out of me, as does any enormous logistics based company who pull it all off 99% of the time. That even goes for passenger airlines who have feed and service their "cargo"...but "I" who know nothing would deduce that the only hours that would work for their logistics model and brand promise is plane after plane taking off all night long.
The one question this thread raises for me is noise. With heavy aircraft taking off every minute through the night, what is the noise pollution like for residents near MEM and others?


I live right under the flight path of IND, and although I don't live close to IND, there is a period from 11-1am that is pretty noisy...


IND has done some huge projects to mitigate noise pollution including purchasing and demolishing the homes closest to the noise and paying for additional sound insulation in homes effected. That in addition to the evolving FedEx fleet mix (757 instead of 727; more 767s, less DC-10; etc) has made a major difference around the airport here.
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 12:30 pm

Very interesting. I wonder how the residents of so-called "curfew airports" would feel about having FedEx next door. I remember staying at a Hampton Inn near the airport in Memphis a number of years ago and didn't give the FedEx night bank a thought. Boy did I regret it. Not a single blink of sleep that night.
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:13 pm

SkyVoice wrote:
KTPA, You may have noticed that the major cargo hubs in the USA are not only busiest at night, but that they are centrally located on the North American continent. FedEx has their hub at Memphis (MEM). The UPS Worldport is at Louisville International Airport (SDF). DHL's air freight hub was originally located at the Cincinnati / Northern Kentucky Airport (CVG). For awhile, DHL, along Airborne and Kalitta, moved their hub from CVG to the Wilmington Air Park (ILN) in Wilmington, Ohio, but since then that entire operation has returned to CVG. And, Amazon's airline, Amazon Prime Air, has announced that they, too, will build their megahub at CVG. (It's a good thing that CVG has both the runways and the acreage [hectares] to accommodate all of this growth & expansion!) Anyway, just look at a map of the Lower 48 & you will see how it makes sense for all of the air freight hubs to be centrally located, which makes it possible for most of North America to be within reach overnight.


Correct, in order to accomplish minimum-cost overnight deliveries between ALL major US cities, you need to have 1 hub located in the _center of demand_ yet still logistically possible to get everywhere. Being in the geographic center of demand saves fuel and ton-miles carried. But you also need to serve SEA-MEM-SAN, which is a time constraint, so you could not locate your hub in Miami for example. That might be too far East to get transfers accomplished and out to recipients on the west coast.
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:19 pm

maxpower1954 wrote:
Fed Ex didn't start with "old Lear Jets". They started with factory fresh Fan Jet Falcons custom configured by Dassault for Fed Ex.


Agreed. Creative story editing on my part. Also sometimes overlooked in the tale of Fred Smith is that he had the contacts to amass a start up investment of IIRC around $94mm to launch the operation leveraging his $4mm inheritance, which enabled the early fleet of the Falcons. That start up investment in today dollars would be between US$400 and 500mm, and at that time was one of the largest if not the largest start up investments IIRC. And that was barely enough to get them through the first 2 to 3 years years until they hit critical mass. Tremendous vision (and guts) on the part of Fred Smith.

After I finished college in 1977 I started working in international commercial banking, and we were early users of Federal Express for shipping draft loan agreements back and forth to attorneys and clients for review and comment.

(Reminiscing: It is amazing what has occurred in the last 45 odd years since Fedex first started. In 1977, telex was still the principal method of international banking communication at if I recall maybe 50 words per minute transmission speeds. And we used to write out our messages on a telex pad and send them to the telex room where the telex operators converted your note into short speak using abbreviated words onto a paper tape that was fed into the telex machine. Facsimiles and personal computers did not yet exist. Everything was typed out on IBM selectric typewriters).
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 2:15 pm

I have seen overnight packages from AUS to Houston go through MEM. UPS has the advantage (cost wise) of throwing the package on a ground truck between city pairs and still be overnight.

Its been stated that with scanning and email the need for over night has declined but with E commerce in full swing the future looks bright for FEDEX and its competitors.
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 2:24 pm

It's called overnight shipping for a reason
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 2:28 pm

berari wrote:
KTPAFlyer wrote:
Hello A.net,

Always wondered why the Superhub is so busy at night if the temperature is not that hot during the day. I've heard that there is a plane arriving or departing every 40 seconds during these hours! Is it a logistical or physical reason for peak rush during night hours?


Think about the business that Fedex is in: overnight delivery. The packages need to be sorted some time between day 1 and day 2, and guess what, that's at night. So all flights come in from all over the place to drop parcels, parcels get sorted, then the plans fly off to destinations for delivery.



I can't believe you had to explain this. I was going to but thank for beating me to it.
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 2:32 pm

VC10er wrote:
Both FedEx and UPS impress the hell out of me, as does any enormous logistics based company who pull it all off 99% of the time. That even goes for passenger airlines who have feed and service their "cargo"...but "I" who know nothing would deduce that the only hours that would work for their logistics model and brand promise is plane after plane taking off all night long.
The one question this thread raises for me is noise. With heavy aircraft taking off every minute through the night, what is the noise pollution like for residents near MEM and others?


I live about 15 miles due south of 36L/18R. I very rarely hear the noise at night, as they do seem to climb out quite rapidly, if they are even on the north/south runways instead of 09/27 which runs right next to the hub.

On the other hand, during the daytime at certain hours, you definitely hear the inbound traffic, particularly in IFR conditions with low ceilings, as they come in quite low to the ground. It is nearly constant some days, and I've spent a long time trying to identify the distinct noises the aircraft make- there is one noise I can't ever seem to pin down. I believe it is the leading edge slats on the MD-10/11, but they make a very distinct groan when they deploy. But normally when I hear it right overhead, it is too cloudy to get a good look!
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 2:51 pm

You don't want your hub in the geographic center of the US. You want it closer to Ohio. The reason is so you can run trucks from your hub to the close (8hr drive) cities and still make it overnight. Like William suggested above, you can also run trucks (or a plane) city to city if you have enough freight to make it profitable, otherwise, consolidate everything and send it to the hub to sort it all out.
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 3:14 pm

Flighty wrote:
Correct, in order to accomplish minimum-cost overnight deliveries between ALL major US cities, you need to have 1 hub located in the _center of demand_ yet still logistically possible to get everywhere. Being in the geographic center of demand saves fuel and ton-miles carried. But you also need to serve SEA-MEM-SAN, which is a time constraint, so you could not locate your hub in Miami for example. That might be too far East to get transfers accomplished and out to recipients on the west coast.

Hence the need for secondary hubs on the west coast, OAK for FedEx (and ONT for UPS). Overnight freight intra-west is usually routed through OAK to protect service, as the close proximity allows for more wiggle room in case anything goes awry. Deferred freight, however, is often still sent through MEM.
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 3:32 pm

Think about their business. They pickup packages in the afternoon, travel is overnight, and delivery is the next day. It has to be overnight they need alot of time to sort and pack/unpack planes etc. I can't see how they couldn't run overnight.

Also why wouldn't they want to this travel at night the airports are all less busy and its not as hot ie your cargo plane sitting in the hot sun roasting on the paved runway waiting to takeoff. There is only reasons you want to do this overnight and pretty much no reason they could or would want to do it during the daytime
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 3:44 pm

It's the same for international courier hubs too. You can see DHL/Air Hong Kong flight schedule below:
https://www.airhongkong.com.hk/public/g ... 39c0577d5e

All flights from across Asia arrive at HKG at around 12am, and they leave at around 4am.

Thus, it maximizes the time for businesses to ship their packages, i.e. they can ship their package at 3pm local time and can still get that onto the plane for HKG the same night, then it gets sorted onto the next leg, fly out at 4am, arriving at 8am at the other side of Asia, and get cleared and delivered for the final destination before 12pm. Arguably, it's not much slower than email, assuming people are not checking their work emails between 5pm and 9am the next day. And for many documents that need to be delivered with hard copies (e.g. legal docs), it's impressive to be able to deliver at such speed.

ANA Cargo also run quasi fast cargo service thru its cargo hub at Okinawa, with its 767F flying similar schedule at Okinawa.
319/20/21 332/33 342/43/45 359/51 388 707 717 732/36/3G/38/39 74R/42/43/44/4E/48 757 762/63 772/7L/73/7W 788/89 D10 M80 135/40/45 175/90 DH1/4 CRJ/R7 L10
AY LH OU SR BA FI
AA DL UA NW AC CP WS FL NK PD
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RDUDDJI
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 3:48 pm

Both FDX and UPS do all their overnight delivery...wait for it...overnight. :) The overnight hub ops really aren't that much different than how a pax hub operates. A bunch of flights come in and a bunch of people get on other flights out. Biggest difference is the timing. Pax would not desire 4 hours connections. :)

However both also have (less banked) daytime operations, often for Second Day deliveries. Por ejemplo: If you ship something 2 day from NYC to LA, it will go to their local hub and spend the night there, then go out on a flight the following morning to one of the FDX or UPS hubs and get to LA that next evening/night. However, from there it will not go out for delivery until the next morning (on the 2nd day). There are exceptions to this. For UPS, if the 2day window is available via ground, it will get routed that way. For example, if I sent a package from RDU to LEX, it would most likely go via ground to the GSO center (basically the hub for ground ops in NC), and then go to wherever the center is in Ky and then out for delivery the 2nd day. I'm not sure how that would work on FDX, I don't think they have as much long haul ground coverage as UPS, but I could be wrong.

I work for a company who's one of UPS top 5 customers in Europe. For our U.S. customers, if they place an order by 1pm (ET), we can ship stuff from our distribution center in Belgium to anywhere in the World the following day. It's trucked to CGN and then UPS flies it from there to wherever the next hub is. We even have it setup where it's customs pre-cleared from our dist center. All that logistics stuff is pretty amazing if you ask me.
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IADCA
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 3:51 pm

exFWAOONW wrote:
You don't want your hub in the geographic center of the US. You want it closer to Ohio. The reason is so you can run trucks from your hub to the close (8hr drive) cities and still make it overnight. Like William suggested above, you can also run trucks (or a plane) city to city if you have enough freight to make it profitable, otherwise, consolidate everything and send it to the hub to sort it all out.


The larger reason is the time zones and the length of flights. If your hub is too far east, you can't get the packages in from the west coast in time for the sort and if it's too far west, you can't get them to the east coast in time for morning delivery. It's a fairly narrow band of geography that works.
 
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william
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:01 pm

RDUDDJI wrote:
Both FDX and UPS do all their overnight delivery...wait for it...overnight. :) The overnight hub ops really aren't that much different than how a pax hub operates. A bunch of flights come in and a bunch of people get on other flights out. Biggest difference is the timing. Pax would not desire 4 hours connections. :)

However both also have (less banked) daytime operations, often for Second Day deliveries. Por ejemplo: If you ship something 2 day from NYC to LA, it will go to their local hub and spend the night there, then go out on a flight the following morning to one of the FDX or UPS hubs and get to LA that next evening/night. However, from there it will not go out for delivery until the next morning (on the 2nd day). There are exceptions to this. For UPS, if the 2day window is available via ground, it will get routed that way. For example, if I sent a package from RDU to LEX, it would most likely go via ground to the GSO center (basically the hub for ground ops in NC), and then go to wherever the center is in Ky and then out for delivery the 2nd day. I'm not sure how that would work on FDX, I don't think they have as much long haul ground coverage as UPS, but I could be wrong.

I work for a company who's one of UPS top 5 customers in Europe. For our U.S. customers, if they place an order by 1pm (ET), we can ship stuff from our distribution center in Belgium to anywhere in the World the following day. It's trucked to CGN and then UPS flies it from there to wherever the next hub is. We even have it setup where it's customs pre-cleared from our dist center. All that logistics stuff is pretty amazing if you ask me.


Along with 2nd Day Air and Saver stuff I think FEDEX also moves USPS mail during the day.
 
Mogrcat
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:03 pm

Real off-the-wall question.

Would a cargo-only airport be viable? Are the (mostly) abandoned facilities in the US Midwest (like the former Chanute AFB in IL?) suitable for repurposing as cargo hubs? Those already have infrastructure. Having cargo-only eliminates all of the stuff required by passengers - terminals, food courts, shopping, giant parking lots, rental cars, airport personnel (some TSA, airline employees), etc. It would also offer 24/7 utilization of facilities, especially for foreign carriers who don't necessarily come and go at night. Downsides? I'm sure.
 
adools
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:33 pm

Do both airlines still run those "sweeper" flights that fly a longer square shaped pattern over the US in case they are needed to fill extra capacity or a plane goes technical? I remember some routings that followed the "square" states borders in some strange patterns.
 
kbmiflyer
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:49 pm

Mogrcat wrote:
Real off-the-wall question.

Would a cargo-only airport be viable? Are the (mostly) abandoned facilities in the US Midwest (like the former Chanute AFB in IL?) suitable for repurposing as cargo hubs? Those already have infrastructure. Having cargo-only eliminates all of the stuff required by passengers - terminals, food courts, shopping, giant parking lots, rental cars, airport personnel (some TSA, airline employees), etc. It would also offer 24/7 utilization of facilities, especially for foreign carriers who don't necessarily come and go at night. Downsides? I'm sure.


Wilmington Airport in Ohio was privately owned by DHL back in the day for solely cargo service, it was a former air force base. It is now publicly owned but I believe it still does primarily cargo service.

You will notice that many of the major mid-west hubs (IND, SDF, MEM) are passenger airports but they don't have a ton of traffic, especially for the parallel runway configurations they have. The exception is MEM back when they had a NW hub. So none of these hubs really get backed up at all due to passenger traffic, either for the overnight flights or the mid-day second day operations.
 
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:58 pm

Mogrcat wrote:
Real off-the-wall question.

Would a cargo-only airport be viable? Are the (mostly) abandoned facilities in the US Midwest (like the former Chanute AFB in IL?) suitable for repurposing as cargo hubs? Those already have infrastructure. Having cargo-only eliminates all of the stuff required by passengers - terminals, food courts, shopping, giant parking lots, rental cars, airport personnel (some TSA, airline employees), etc. It would also offer 24/7 utilization of facilities, especially for foreign carriers who don't necessarily come and go at night. Downsides? I'm sure.


The area around Chanute in particular has been extensively redeveloped. It was not a candidate for conversion into a large cargo field because Chanute had very short runways suited only for props. The current Rantoul National Airport only has 5000 ft runways and it's not like there's vast swaths of runway they aren't using (like CIU - Former Kincheloe AFB). RFD fills this role effectively for Illinois - RFD was built on a former Army base but little of whatever Army Airfield it had was used.

OSC - former Wurtsmith AFB is used for much of Kalitta's operations (not so much as a cargo hub but as a maintenance base).

BLV and GUS (Grissom AFB) are well located but are currently joint-use airports so extensive cargo development would be problematic. If for some reason they are closed they might be prime targets (although GUS is somewhat challenged logistically because it's not close to any expressways).

MTC (Selfridge ANGB) would also have some value if closed, but it has a lot of nearby development and the land is actually worth something and it only has a single 9000 ft runway and also has YIP not too far away that has land available for development and already supports significant cargo activity.
 
VolvoBus
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 5:27 pm

VC10er wrote:
Both FedEx and UPS impress the hell out of me, as does any enormous logistics based company who pull it all off 99% of the time. That even goes for passenger airlines who have feed and service their "cargo"...but "I" who know nothing would deduce that the only hours that would work for their logistics model and brand promise is plane after plane taking off all night long.
The one question this thread raises for me is noise. With heavy aircraft taking off every minute through the night, what is the noise pollution like for residents near MEM and others?


At least the passenger airlines 'cargo' moves itself to the outbound flight ( OK sweeping generalisation ). What impresses me is moving so many items from one individual flight to umpteen outbound flights and then making up pallets or containers for loading. All against the clock.
 
airzona11
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:25 pm

There are some great documentaries on Netflix, YouTube, Science Channel, etc. Worth checking out, the logistics and scale are so impressive.
 
EXMEMWIDGET
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:09 pm

adools wrote:
Do both airlines still run those "sweeper" flights that fly a longer square shaped pattern over the US in case they are needed to fill extra capacity or a plane goes technical? I remember some routings that followed the "square" states borders in some strange patterns.


FedEx still has them. FDX 1311 is a frequent visitor to DFW. It starts out of DEN and usually flies south to the Four Corners area and then turns towards Memphis. It will divert to DFW, ELP, OKC or other cities if needed. There are other flights that will handle other areas of the US, if needed.
Ex DL and NW, current FX.
 
EXMEMWIDGET
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:20 pm

[quote="william"]I have seen overnight packages from AUS to Houston go through MEM. UPS has the advantage (cost wise) of throwing the package on a ground truck between city pairs and still be overnight.

FedEx does the same thing, but not quite to the same extent as UPS. For example, if you send a next day package from OKC to AUS, it most likely will never be on an airplane. The package would be put on a truck from OKC to AFW where it would be sorted and then loaded on another truck headed to AUS. FedEx has a whole network of it's own truck routes along with a large amount of contract carriers. FedEx will also utilize FedEx ground equipment to move Express packages in some cases. AFW to LAX comes to mind. They carry nothing but Express 2 day packages on that route..
Ex DL and NW, current FX.
 
EXMEMWIDGET
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:39 pm

IADCA wrote:
exFWAOONW wrote:
You don't want your hub in the geographic center of the US. You want it closer to Ohio. The reason is so you can run trucks from your hub to the close (8hr drive) cities and still make it overnight. Like William suggested above, you can also run trucks (or a plane) city to city if you have enough freight to make it profitable, otherwise, consolidate everything and send it to the hub to sort it all out.


The larger reason is the time zones and the length of flights. If your hub is too far east, you can't get the packages in from the west coast in time for the sort and if it's too far west, you can't get them to the east coast in time for morning delivery. It's a fairly narrow band of geography that works.



Correct! The further west that you go in the US, the earlier the cutoff time is for package pickup. Here in the DFW area, the cutoff time is around 1900 for package pickup. The exception to the rule is the longtime customer who has a regular scheduled pickup. When I was a FedEx courier some 20 years years ago, the 2000 and 2030 scheduled pickup times were very common.

If I remember correctly, west coast pickup cutoff times were around 1600. Hawaii has some really early cutoffs for next day packages....sometime in the morning, I believe.
Ex DL and NW, current FX.
 
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Tugger
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:40 pm

I suspect many here have already seen this but if you have not it is worth watching:

24 hours of FedEx
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0xEczrGIy08

Tugg
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WesternA318
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:41 pm

b747400erf wrote:
coronado wrote:
The original tag line used by Fedex in its advertising sums it all up: When it absolutely positively has to be there overnight! sums up the model of why Memphis (and Indy as a back up hub) and Oakland as a transpacific hub are so busy in the middle of the night.. When their clients offices and business locations close at 5 or 6pm, Fedex goes to work. Scenario: The customer is trying finish sending a prototype sample by 4:59pm because the Fedex last pick up is at 5pm, in order to get that pouch delivered from Minneapolis to San Diego by 10 am (or 8am for an extra fee!) the next morning for a production approval. Amazing what Fred Smith created starting with some old Lear Jets. Google the words 'Fred Smith overnight delivery' and you can read the stories behind his college papers ''inventing'' the overnight delivery business.

FX is more than just night, with their military and postal service contracts. And they did not start with old Learjets. If you act like an expert at least give correct facts.



Welcome to a.net, LOL!
 
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jetjack74
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 7:57 pm

KTPAFlyer wrote:
Hello A.net,

Always wondered why the Superhub is so busy at night if the temperature is not that hot during the day. I've heard that there is a plane arriving or departing every 40 seconds during these hours! Is it a logistical or physical reason for peak rush during night hours?

Overnight express, thats the business. Your not going accomplish very much with packages sitting around at the facility when the delivery locations are all closed or people at their houses are asleep. I just ordered things for overnight last Tuesday from a place in LA for delivery for the next day. They dropped it off at LAX at 4pm Tuesday, I had it by Wednesday around 10am. And rhe coast to coast service has to go through main hubs.
Made from jets!
 
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william
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:02 pm

EXMEMWIDGET wrote:
william wrote:
I have seen overnight packages from AUS to Houston go through MEM. UPS has the advantage (cost wise) of throwing the package on a ground truck between city pairs and still be overnight.

FedEx does the same thing, but not quite to the same extent as UPS. For example, if you send a next day package from OKC to AUS, it most likely will never be on an airplane. The package would be put on a truck from OKC to AFW where it would be sorted and then loaded on another truck headed to AUS. FedEx has a whole network of it's own truck routes along with a large amount of contract carriers. FedEx will also utilize FedEx ground equipment to move Express packages in some cases. AFW to LAX comes to mind. They carry nothing but Express 2 day packages on that route..


True, but FEDEX's ground op is not as integrated's as UPS's. I can send a 2nd Air pack via FedEx from AUS to ORD where it would mostly likely sit for a day at AFW, MEM or IND before proceding. Or ship it ground on UPS (looking at my UPS transit map now) and be there in two days. Sometimes it trucked but a couple times been put in a container to be put on a train in Mesquite. The world of Logistics is pretty fascinating.
 
johns624
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:19 pm

We receive product that has to be shipped 2nd Day Air. We receive other product from the same distributor that goes FX Ground and gets here overnight (Southern Ohio to Detroit).
 
USAirKid
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:27 pm

william wrote:
I have seen overnight packages from AUS to Houston go through MEM. UPS has the advantage (cost wise) of throwing the package on a ground truck between city pairs and still be overnight.

Its been stated that with scanning and email the need for over night has declined but with E commerce in full swing the future looks bright for FEDEX and its competitors.


Got ya beat.. I've seen overnight packages from Covington, Kentucky to Cincinnati, Ohio go through MEM.. Which is funny and kinda sad because those are both in the same locality, inside the Interstate 275 beltway.
 
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kjeld0d
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:28 pm

Question #1: If your package is picked up at 5pm and is delivered to your destination at 9 am the next day, what time do the planes need to be flying?
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william
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:33 pm

USAirKid wrote:
william wrote:
I have seen overnight packages from AUS to Houston go through MEM. UPS has the advantage (cost wise) of throwing the package on a ground truck between city pairs and still be overnight.

Its been stated that with scanning and email the need for over night has declined but with E commerce in full swing the future looks bright for FEDEX and its competitors.


Got ya beat.. I've seen overnight packages from Covington, Kentucky to Cincinnati, Ohio go through MEM.. Which is funny and kinda sad because those are both in the same locality, inside the Interstate 275 beltway.



:lol: :lol: :lol: WOW!
 
USAirKid
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Re: Why is the FedEx Superhub busiest between 10PM and 4AM?

Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:34 pm

exFWAOONW wrote:
You don't want your hub in the geographic center of the US. You want it closer to Ohio. The reason is so you can run trucks from your hub to the close (8hr drive) cities and still make it overnight. Like William suggested above, you can also run trucks (or a plane) city to city if you have enough freight to make it profitable, otherwise, consolidate everything and send it to the hub to sort it all out.


You also want it near the weighted population center of the US, which in the 1960s through 1980s (when air hubs were being sited) was in/near Illinois.)

That being said, they also placed the hubs a bit south than a pure population weighting would dictate, most likely for weather reasons.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mean_cent ... population

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