Title: Scheduling with sequence-dependent batch setup times: planning tests for a pharmaceutic industry

Authors: J. Orestes Cerdeira, Rosa M.V. Figueiredo, Antonio Pereira, Cristina Requejo

Addresses: Department of Biosystems' Sciences and Engineering and Forest Research Centre (Centro de Estudos Florestais), Instituto Superior de Agronomia, Technical University of Lisbon (TU Lisbon), Tapada da Ajuda, 1349-017 Lisboa, Portugal. ' Department of Mathematics and CIDMA, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitario de Santiago, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal. ' Department of Mathematics and CIDMA, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitario de Santiago, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal. ' Department of Mathematics and CIDMA, University of Aveiro, Campus Universitario de Santiago, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal

Abstract: In this work, we propose an approach for a real sequence-dependent batch setup times scheduling problem arising in a pharmaceutical company. A legal obligation for the pharmaceutical industry is to monitor the quality of their products during its life cycle. The development of new pharmaceutical products (medicines) leads to a high number of batches to be tested in order to accomplish with certain regulatory obligations regarding maintaining safeguards on quality and safety. The time lines are critical in this process. The problem is how to manage and schedule a number of tests, that require setups and obey to certain precedence relations, to avoid delays in the answers.

Keywords: batch scheduling; sequence-dependent setup times; case study; pharmaceutical industry; quality; safety.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMMNO.2011.040792

International Journal of Mathematical Modelling and Numerical Optimisation, 2011 Vol.2 No.3, pp.273 - 287

Available online: 26 Jun 2011 *

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