Title: Determining the size of a mix bank in a mixed-model assembly line

Authors: Ryojiro Ito; Haruki Matsuura; Akiko Asada

Addresses: Department of Industrial Engineering and Management, Kanagawa University, Rokkakubashi, Kanagawa-ku, Yokohama-shi, Kanagawa, 221-8686, Japan ' Department of Industrial Engineering and Management, Kanagawa University, Rokkakubashi, Kanagawa-ku, Yokohama-shi, Kanagawa, 221-8686, Japan ' Department of Industrial Engineering and Management, Kanagawa University, Rokkakubashi, Kanagawa-ku, Yokohama-shi, Kanagawa, 221-8686, Japan

Abstract: This paper provides a guideline for determining the size of a mix bank using the number of sequences generated by the bank. A mix bank is a buffer system that consists of a set of parallel first-in, first-out lanes of a specific capacity. We derive the exact solution of the number of sequences generated in two special cases, the case where the capacity of each lane is only one and the case of two lanes with a capacity equal to the number of models minus one. The input for the mix bank is assumed to be a sequence of n different models. In the general case, upper and lower bounds on the number of sequences are presented by analysing the results of two special cases. A procedure for determining the size of a mix bank is demonstrated with a numerical example. Ways to use a mix bank to increase efficiency and flexibility are also discussed.

Keywords: mixed-model assembly line; mix bank; line length; flexibility; size; buffer; re-sequencing; scheduling; upper bound; lower bound.

DOI: 10.1504/AJMSA.2018.091015

Asian Journal of Management Science and Applications, 2018 Vol.3 No.2, pp.132 - 155

Accepted: 22 Aug 2017
Published online: 06 Apr 2018 *

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