Research Projects

Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) for Discrete Manufacturing

The manufacturing landscape has been evolving and experiencing significant changes over the last decade. These changes could be characterised by a large and more diverse product mix with smaller batch size and shorter lead times. To compete effectively, excellent customer services must be delivered while keeping the price low. Therefore, manufacturing enterprises will have to carefully control and utilise their resources effectively, in order to improve their delivery performance, reduce set-up and production time losses. Hence, the production planning and scheduling function have become more critical and challenging. Many of today's scheduling professionals are feeling the need for a computerised decision support tool to assist them in managing the complex set of inter-related constraints. The effective management of these constraints is a vital key to success in today's competitive environment. 

GSS is the APS solution developed by SIMTech to support the planning and scheduling functions of production plants. It consists of modules that are used by Planning Manager, Scheduler, Planner, and Production Supervisor, through aggregate planning at Capacity Planning (CP) and Daily Lot Release (DLR) levels and detailed scheduling and sequencing at Daily Production Scheduling (DPS) and Dynamic Operation Scheduling (DOS) levels:

  • Capacity Planning (CP) Module handles long term planning requirements and matches the production resources with customer forecast to determine the sufficiency of machines in bottleneck operations.
  • Daily Lot Release (DLR) Module helps the Production Control planner in releasing the right mix of products into production, daily or on a shift basis. It employs state-of-the-art release strategies based on multiple constraints to balance production WIP, reduce conversion rate and reflect the job urgencies.
  • Daily Production Schedule (DPS) Module generates detailed machine schedule with exact start and end times. Operation constraints like machine loading preference and tooling and fixtures constraints can be factored into the scheduling model. "What-if" scenario analyses are provided through specification of different scheduling objectives.
  • Dynamic Operation Schedule (DOS) Module assists in selected critical operation, for local re-scheduling and optimisation. It can regenerate the detailed schedule for machine under a particular bottleneck operation, taking into account the latest WIP, machine status and urgent orders. It helps the production supervisor to respond quickly to unexpected events and optimise the resources more effectively
Contact PersonChua Tay Jin()
Solution

As an Advanced Planning and Scheduling (APS) system, GSS is designed to support both long-term planning and short-term scheduling functions of production plants. It can be deployed to work as a stand-alone product or in conjunction with any existing Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system and Manufacturing Execution System (MES), to generate a detailed time-phased schedule which takes into consideration factors such as setup problems, component storage and temporary resource unavailability that may affect the sequencing at work centres on the manufacturing shop floor. It enhances delivery performance by allowing short-term adjustments to the production plan. 

Key capabilities:

  • Multi-constraint finite capacity planning and scheduling with simultaneous consideration of material, tooling, human resource and machine
  • Decision support with what-if
  • Consider real-world constraints
  • Optimises plan in concert with business goals
  • Integrated planning and scheduling models
Benefits

Three patents pertaining to GSS technologies have been filed to USPTO

  1. Finite Capacity Scheduling Using Job Prioritization and Machine Selection File on 14 Jul 2005 Chua Tay Jin, Yin Xiao Feng, Zhu Ju Ping, Cai Tian Xiang

  2. US Patent Number: 2007/7,174,232 Job Release With Multiple Constraints File on 5 May 2005 Chua Tay Jin, Cai Tian Xiang, Liu Ming Wei, Wang Feng Yu

  3. Rough-Cut Capacity Planning With Production Constraints And Dynamic Bottleneck Considerations File on 26 May 2005 Chua Tay Jin, Wang Feng Yu, Yan Wen Jing, Cai Tian Xiang 

Two Non-Exclusive Licensees Of GSS

  1. iDimension Systems Pte Ltd (20/8/2003, 21/72006)
  2. A2000 Solutions Pte Ltd (28/3/2005)
Patents / Awards / Achievements / Differentiation

Three patents pertaining to GSS technologies have been filed to USPTO

  1. Finite Capacity Scheduling Using Job Prioritization and Machine Selection File on 14 Jul 2005 Chua Tay Jin, Yin Xiao Feng, Zhu Ju Ping, Cai Tian Xiang

  2. US Patent Number: 2007/7,174,232 Job Release With Multiple Constraints File on 5 May 2005 Chua Tay Jin, Cai Tian Xiang, Liu Ming Wei, Wang Feng Yu

  3. Rough-Cut Capacity Planning With Production Constraints And Dynamic Bottleneck Considerations File on 26 May 2005 Chua Tay Jin, Wang Feng Yu, Yan Wen Jing, Cai Tian Xiang 

Two Non-Exclusive Licensees Of GSS

  1. iDimension Systems Pte Ltd (20/8/2003, 21/72006)
  2. A2000 Solutions Pte Ltd (28/3/2005)
Applications

It can be deployed as a client-server based Advanced Planning and Scheduling solution. In addition,

  • It is a complementary solution to the Manufacturing Execution System (MES) and Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) System
  • It is well suited for Semiconductor and Electronics industries that have large amount of product mix and machines
  • In general, it is designed for discrete production environment, applicable for both flow shop and job shop models

Problems Addressed

The issues and problems that are addressed by GSS range from the longer term capacity requirements to the short-term day-to-day management of the production floor. At the higher level, it examines the customer forecast/demand against the existing capacity constraints, in order to facilitate strategic decision as to whether a major purchase of capacity should be made or should sub-contract to third-party be considered. On a daily basis, it determines what should be the product-mix to be released in a particular day or shift, so that there is continuity between successive product loadings while observing the capacity constraints. At the same time, detailed production schedule is also being generated to guide the production supervisor on the actual execution of the customer orders on the production floors, considering the various production goals of minimisation of work-in-process (WIP), maximisation of machine utilisation and meeting the customer order due date.