A Knowledge-Based System for Material-Handling Selection of Discrete Part Manufacturing
Iliyas Ahmad, Maznah (2009) A Knowledge-Based System for Material-Handling Selection of Discrete Part Manufacturing. Masters thesis, Universiti Putra Malaysia.
Material handling is one of the production functions that have been the focus of attention for many manufacturing industries especially discrete parts manufacturing. Generally, the design of material handling system can be divided into four phases namely; conceptual design, detailed design, launching and fully operational. The focus of this research is on the conceptual design phase. Since there are hundreds of equipment types and procedures to choose from, the selection activities are usually complex and difficult. Therefore, quick and appropriate material handling selection is important in a production system, since it can increase productivity, flexibility of the manufacturing time and it also reduces cost. Hence, development of a decision support system to aid in the selection of the material handling equipment is a significant contribution in manufacturing operations. In this research work, the selection system was developed using Kappa-PC expert system shell. It uses forward chaining for inferencing. In the forward reasoning stage, the developed system attempts to deduce a material handling equipment type recommendation based on user specified requirements. The selections of the material handling equipment are based on the move attributes and characteristics of material to be handled, operation requirement and area restriction. The recommendation from the knowledge-based system is refined through application of simulation modeling techniques. The simulation was carried out using Arena 9.0 software package. The material handling selection system assist design engineers in selecting the most suitable and appropriate material handling equipment type for the task being considered. The advantages of the developed system are; it considers both selection and configuration analysis, it can be immediately implemented in factory operations; it is modular and user friendly. The system was successfully validated through a case study. The case study was carried out on Sharp Manufacturing Corporation Sdn. Bhd., in Malaysia. Through the case study, a total of 5.20s of the transfer time and RM 9.00 per cycle of the transportation cost of the current Sharp Manufacturing System will be reduced. This result in 72.22 and 75.00 percent of improvement on the transfer time and transportation cost respectively. By the reduction and improvement on the transfer time and transportation cost, the efficiency of the material flow and productivity of the Sharp Manufacturing system will increase and the production cost will reduce.
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