TY - JOUR

T1 - Capacity analysis of an automated kit transportation system

AU - Zijm, W.H.M.

AU - Adan, I.J.B.F.

AU - Buitenhek, R.

AU - Houtum, van, G.J.J.A.N.

PY - 2000

Y1 - 2000

N2 - In this paper, we present a capacity analysis of an automated transportation system in a flexible assembly factory. The transportation system, together with the workstations, is modeled as a network of queues with multiple job classes. Due to its complex nature, the steadystate behavior of this network is not described by a productform solution. Therefore, we present an approximate method to determine the capacity of the network. We first study a number of key elements of the system separately and subsequently combine the results of this analysis in an Approximate Mean Value Analysis (AMVA) algorithm. The key elements are a buffer/transfer system (the bottleneck of the system), modeled as a preemptiverepeat priority queue with identical deterministic service times for the different job classes, a set of elevators, modeled as vacation servers, a number of work cells, modeled as multiserver queues, and several nonaccumulating conveyor belts, modeled as ample servers. The AMVA algorithm exploits the property that the initial multiclass queueing network can be decomposed into a sequence of singleclass queueing networks and hence is very efficient. Comparison of numerical results of the AMVA algorithm for the throughputs for the different job classes to simulation results shows that the AMVA algorithm is also accurate. For several series of instances, the maximum relative error that we found was only 4.0%.

AB - In this paper, we present a capacity analysis of an automated transportation system in a flexible assembly factory. The transportation system, together with the workstations, is modeled as a network of queues with multiple job classes. Due to its complex nature, the steadystate behavior of this network is not described by a productform solution. Therefore, we present an approximate method to determine the capacity of the network. We first study a number of key elements of the system separately and subsequently combine the results of this analysis in an Approximate Mean Value Analysis (AMVA) algorithm. The key elements are a buffer/transfer system (the bottleneck of the system), modeled as a preemptiverepeat priority queue with identical deterministic service times for the different job classes, a set of elevators, modeled as vacation servers, a number of work cells, modeled as multiserver queues, and several nonaccumulating conveyor belts, modeled as ample servers. The AMVA algorithm exploits the property that the initial multiclass queueing network can be decomposed into a sequence of singleclass queueing networks and hence is very efficient. Comparison of numerical results of the AMVA algorithm for the throughputs for the different job classes to simulation results shows that the AMVA algorithm is also accurate. For several series of instances, the maximum relative error that we found was only 4.0%.

U2 - 10.1023/A:1018936209774

DO - 10.1023/A:1018936209774

M3 - Article

VL - 93

SP - 423

EP - 446

JO - Annals of Operations Research

JF - Annals of Operations Research

SN - 0254-5330

IS - 1-4

ER -