A control strategy for promoting shop-floor stability
This research aimed to study real-time shop floor control problem in a manufacturing environment with dual resource (machine and labour), under impact of machine breakdowns. In this study, a multiperspective (order and resource perspectives) control strategy is proposed to improve effectiveness of dispatching procedure for promoting shop floor stability. In this control strategy, both order and resource related factors have been taken into account according to information on direct upstream and succeeding workcentres. A simulated manufacturing environment has been developed as a platform for testing and analysing performances of the proposed control strategy. A series of experiments have been carried out in a variety of system settings and conditions in the simulated manufacturing environment. The experiments have shown that the proposed control strategy outperformed the ODD (Earliest Operation Due Date) rule in hostile environments, which have been described by high level of shop load and/or high intensity of machine breakdowns. In hostile environments, the proposed control strategy has given best performance when overtime was not used, and given promising results in reduction of overtime cost when overtime was used to compensate for capacity loss. Further direction of research is also suggested.