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Title: Makespan minimisation for pre-emptive scheduling of mobile robots in FMS environment

Authors: Quang-Vinh Dang; Lam Nguyen

Addresses: Department of Global Production Engineering and Management, Vietnamese-German University, Binh Duong, Vietnam ' Department of Global Production Engineering and Management, Vietnamese-German University, Binh Duong, Vietnam

Abstract: Modern manufacturing models demand customisation and service orientation. The generations of mobile robots will hence have to cope with more complex tasks and rapidly adapt to new situations. With the high level of flexibility, the mobile robots are able to not only transport materials as conventional transporting robots, but also perform manufacturing tasks at some certain machines using their mounted manipulation arms. This paper considers the problem of simultaneous scheduling of machines and such mobile robots in a flexible manufacturing system. The pre-emption occurs when manufacturing tasks are interrupted to allow the mobile robots to carry out the transport. The performance criterion is to minimise the makespan. A genetic-algorithm-based heuristic is developed to find near-optimal solutions. To evaluate the performance of the proposed heuristic, a mixed-integer programming model is also presented. A numerical example and computational experiments are conducted to demonstrate the effectiveness of the proposed approaches.

Keywords: evolutionary algorithms; FMS; flexible manufacturing systems; MIP; mixed integer programming; mobile robots; pre-emptive scheduling; makespan minimisation; robot scheduling; genetic algorithms; machine scheduling; simultaneous scheduling.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMHEUR.2017.083094

International Journal of Metaheuristics, 2017 Vol.6 No.1/2, pp.3 - 36

Received: 08 Jan 2016
Accepted: 14 Nov 2016

Published online: 20 Mar 2017 *

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