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Title: Virtual modelling for simulation-based lean education

Authors: Elizabeth Cudney; Steven M. Corns; Akalpit Gadre

Addresses: Department of Engineering Management and Systems Engineering, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, Missouri 65401, USA ' Department of Engineering Management and Systems Engineering, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, Missouri 65401, USA ' Department of Engineering Management and Systems Engineering, Missouri University of Science and Technology, Rolla, Missouri 65401, USA

Abstract: This research presents a virtual simulation to enable students to explore and learn lean concepts through virtual experimentation. Exposing students to these concepts is crucial as demand for engineers with an in-depth understanding of lean philosophies is rising. The virtual simulation platform developed provides students an environment to apply lean concepts in experiments in the same manner as current methods for teaching lean, which include hands-on projects and simulation. The platform provides a simple interface, the ability to store results, and the modelling power of state of the art virtual reality software. The virtual simulation platform is built using the VE-Suite virtual engineering framework, which provides user-friendly dialogue boxes, graphical models, performance display gauges, and an editable layout. A mathematical model of an industrial process where lean can be implemented was created for this framework. In addition, a survey instrument is planned to gather information about strengths and weaknesses of the method to implement continuous improvement to the model. By working through this virtual simulation, students can experience multiple applications of lean in a real world setting without constructing an entire line or disrupting production in an existing line.

Keywords: lean concepts; lean education; simulation; mathematical modelling; virtual engineering; virtual reality; engineering education; higher education.

DOI: 10.1504/IJLER.2014.062279

International Journal of Lean Enterprise Research, 2014 Vol.1 No.1, pp.3 - 21

Available online: 03 Jun 2014 *

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