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Title: Increased energy efficiency in manufacturing systems using discrete event simulation
Author: Solding, Petter
ISNI:       0000 0004 2691 6041
Awarding Body: De Montfort University
Current Institution: De Montfort University
Date of Award: 2008
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Market demands are forcing industrial manufacturers to develop their production systems by increasing flexibility, improving quality and lowering production costs. With the help of simulation techniques the understanding of manufacturing systems can be enhanced and alternate solutions can be tested. Simulation has therefore played an important role in industrial development in recent years. New or improved simulation technologies, and new ways to use the available technologies, are still being developed. Energy related costs are often neglected by Swedish industry due to the low energy costs historically in Sweden, compared to other European countries. The developments of the energy market with uncertainty concerning future prices have increased the need for energy efficiency. Resources in manufacturing facilities need to be used in the most efficient way. The increasing use of computer-based tools for supporting production planning and control, as well as management and control of energy systems, has not been as beneficial as might first appear. These two types of tools are seldom integrated, which complicates the control of either system. A methodology for analysing the production system, the energy system and these systems interaction with each other, will enhance the possibility of improved control of the facility. This research has focused on formulating a methodology for more efficient use of energy in manufacturing plants, with main focus on electricity use. The methodology uses Discrete Event Simulation (DES) as a tool for applied analysis of manufacturing systems. Focus area of the study has been on the energy intensive foundry industry. The methodology aids the process of efficient working by identifying what processes are important, what activities have to be carried out and what types of analyses can be undertaken. A way to categorise equipment by energy usage is presented to simplify the procedures of collecting, presenting and using data in the simulation model. An approach to how the model can be built is described so that the simulation model can be used for analysis of energy use. To evaluate the methodology four case studies were carried out at different foundries in Sweden. It was found that the level of maturity between the different companies at the outset of the research project varied, regarding manufacturing and simulation as well as energy use. These differences enhanced the analysis in the way that specialised solutions had to be made to complete the analysis. The output from the simulation case studies showed that there is potential to reduce both electricity and power use in all foundries studied. The methodology, and the integration of Discrete Event Simulation, complements the use of energy models for industrial applications, since analysis can be made on the discrete production which is mimicked by the model. The range of applications that utilise Discrete Event Simulation in industry is also enhanced. The research study has successfully shown that energy data can be added to a simulation model and that the model can be built in a way that makes it useful for analysis of both production efficiency and energy use. The methodology presented can help companies reduce their overall energy use and peak power loads. This will not only reduce the total energy related costs for the companies but also the CO2 emissions, reducing the companies' overall environmental impact. To extend the methodology future research will be conducted to add optimisation techniques to the simulation models and to integrate the models with surrounding systems, such as Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems and Load Management Systems (LMS). Future investigation is also needed to determine whether the methodology can be used for dynamic Life Cycle Assessments (LCA) where the production will contribute to the impact a product will have on the environment during its whole life cycle.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available