Identification and mitigation of bottlenecks in complex production system
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A production system is a system where the raw materials are converted to finished products. A production system is classified in to two types based on the products processed namely single product production system and multi-product production system. The products in any production system would be in either value added or non-value added state. This research focuses on reducing the non-value added state in multi-product or complex production system by analyzing the bottlenecks. A bottleneck machine causes blocking or starving of parts in the system thereby increasing the non-value added time and reducing the system performance. Bottlenecks can be mitigated by control strategies such as buffer allocation and capacity addition. In order to mitigate the bottlenecks, the location, source and type of bottleneck in any system has to be identified. This research uses multiple metrics in order to identify the bottleneck and its type. Based on the metric values, the control strategies are implemented by the developed heuristics such as buffer allocation based on qualitative characteristics, capacity addition based on highest utilization and economic analysis based on sensitivity analysis. Multiple options are given with respect to their performance improvement for the management or the customer to select in order to give flexibility in terms of investment, demand and layout space.
Thesis (M.S.)--Wichita State University, College of Engineering, Dept. of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering.