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**time and through-put performance of functional and
**

cellular layouts

Faizul Huq

Department of MMAC, Eastern Kentucky University, USA and Groupe ESC, Pau,

France

Douglas A. Hensler

College of Engineering and Applied Science, University of Colorado at Boulder,

USA

Zubair M. Mohamed

Department of Management and Information Systems, Western Kentucky

University, USA

Introduction

The choice between a functional

manufacturing structure and a cellular

manufacturing structure continues to be the

focus of discussion among managers and

management scientists alike. Managers

continue to look for methods that improve

operational efficiency and reduced response

time. In response, management scientists

continue to develop models that predict

which manufacturing structure is optimal

under a set of specified conditions.

The extant literature contains a number of

results that demonstrate the best

manufacturing structure choice under a

varying set of conditions. The two principal

input variables to these studies are set-up

time (or a set-up time reduction factor) and

lot size. The principal focus of this work is

the output metric flow time. Flow time

captures manufacturing time but excludes

set-up times. Because of this, the inverse

relationship between flow time and through-

put is not perfectly correlated.

This paper extends the work comparing

functional manufacturing and cellular

manufacturing by explicitly modeling

through-put as an output metric in the

analysis. This is important because set-up

times can have a significant effect on

through-put and production efficiency. As a

result, knowledge about the set of conditions

under which through-put is optimized via the

choice of manufacturing structure provides

an additional tool for managers.

Using simulation models for each

manufacturing structure, this study yields

the set-up time reduction factor and lot size

characteristics under which each is superior

to the other. The study also yields those

conditions under which there is no

significant difference in the output between

the two manufacturing structures.

Background and extant literature

The decade of the 1980s brought with it a new

manufacturing paradigm involving ideas of

just-in-time (JIT), small lot sizes, continuous

improvement, and total quality. Greater

variety in product-line offers and smaller

customer orders became a norm in many

manufacturing environments coupled with

the need to speed delivery to the marketplace

by drastically reducing lead times. The

importance of group technology (GT), or

cellular manufacturing (CM), emerged as a

result of the demands of the new

manufacturing environment and market

needs. GT is essentially designed to improve

the efficiency of small batch production. This

manufacturing structure is best suited to the

multi-product manufacturing company

whose production volume does not justify

continuous or mass production (see Edwards,

1974). The principal difference between a

shop operating on a functional basis as

opposed to one operating on group

technology (cellular manufacturing) lies in

the machine layout and the pattern of

workflow.

Cellular manufacturing (CM) involves the

grouping of parts that have similar

processing requirements into part families.

In implementing CM, part family

identification leads to equipment

requirements specification for each part

family. Once the part family equipment

requirements are specified, the equipment or

The current issue and full text archive of this journal is available at

http://www.emerald-library.com/ft

[ 285]

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

# MCB University Press

[ISSN 0957-6061]

Keywords

Functional layout,

Cellular manufacturing,

Simulation, Through-put time

Abstract

Contrasts functional layouts and

cellular layouts with regard to the

effects of set-up time reduction

and lot size on flow time and

through-put. The structural

environment for the functional

analysis is an efficient functional

system with a staged sequence of

four machine centers with

unidirectional flow and no

backtracking. The structural

environment for the cellular

analysis is a partitioned cell

consisting of one machine from

each of the four machine types

with unidirectional flow and no

backtracking. Simulation models

produce robust results for eight lot

size levels and one (functional

model) and seven (cellular model)

set-up time reduction levels. The

results contrast the effectiveness

of the two manufacturing

approaches under differing input

conditions. Shows that the choice

between the functional structure

and the cellular structure

significantly affects through-put at

lot sizes up to 55, while for lot

sizes of 60 and above there is no

significant effect. The study also

confirms previous results

regarding the effect of

manufacturing structure choice on

flow time.

set of machines needed to process a

particular part family are identified and

grouped together to form a cell. CM, however,

seeks to achieve many of the efficiencies

associated with mass production in job-shop

or functional manufacturing system (see

Edwards, 1974).

Even though a large number of descriptive

articles suggest that group technology has

revolutionized batch manufacturing, studies

such as Flynn and Jacobs (1987) and Morris

and Tersine (1990) question conclusion of

universal superiority of cellular

manufacturing structures over functional

ones. In contrast to Burbidge (1992), Rathmill

and Leonard (1977) suggest that an efficient

functional manufacturing structure is

superior to a cellular structure.

Morris and Tersine (1990) examine {a

functional} process layout vs. a hybrid

layout consisting of eight process

departments and one cell, including factors

such as the fraction of jobs routed to the cells

and the ratio of the cell process time to the

time required in process departments.

Supporting Rathmill and Leonard's results,

Morris and Tersine's provide support

favoring the functional process layout.

Several researchers identify set-up time

reduction as very important in reaping the

benefits of converting to a cellular layout

(see Flynn and Jacobs, 1987; Shafer, 1990;

Suresh, 1992). Suresh includes lot size in

analyzing the choice of manufacturing

structure on flow time. Using a simulation

model, this study analyses the effect of

varying set-up reduction on flow times for

each of the manufacturing structures and

verifies Suresh's results.

This study will also confirm Shafer's (1990)

work in two ways. First, CM possesses the

potential for reducing flow times over a

specific set of conditions. Second, while in a

good number of cases the average time-in-

system (flow time) is statistically lower for

the cellular system, the differences between

finished goods completed (through-put)

between the layouts are not statistically

significant in a majority of the cases. That is,

compared with the functional structure, the

cellular structure may improve flow time but

not the through-put. This exposes the impact

on set-up times resulting from adoption of the

cellular structure.

Analytical model and insights

The analytical models for the cellular-layout

(partitioned) system and the functional-

layout (un-partitioned) system presented

here are consistent with those proposed by

Suresh (1992). The M/M/I queue with k single

servers characterizes the partitioned system,

while the M/M/C queue with multiple

servers characterizes the un-partitioned

system. The use of flow time provides a

confirming exercise for Suresh's results;

more importantly, using through-put

provides a performance metric more closely

aligned to a demand pull environment.

Table I presents the operating

characteristics and/or performance

measures for the two systems. The operating

characteristics for the mathematical bases

form the simulation experiment. The fixed

input variables are the number of similar

machines (k), the demand rate (d), and

average process time (t). The input variables

under study are the lot size (q) and the set-up

time as varied by the setup time reduction

factor (S):

P

0

1

P

kÀ1

n0

ups =ups

n

n!

ups=ups

k

n!

kups

kupsÀups

where = arrival rate, = service rate, =

set-up time reduction factor, T = set-up time.

The subscripts ps and ups represent

partitioned and un-partitioned systems.

Suresh's analytical results indicate that

partitioning work centers lead to

performance deterioration as measured by

flow times and work-in-process levels. Suresh

attributes this to routing flexibility losses in

a partitioned system. This confirms Flynn

and Jacobs' (1987) findings that the

performance deterioration attributed to

group technology is a result of dedicated

machines. Suresh also notes that machine

utilization is lower at specific flow time and

WIP levels.

One of the ways in which benefits of

cellular manufacturing can be reaped in a

partitioned system is via set-up time

reduction. Furthermore, for any given lot

size, an un-partitioned system performs

better than a corresponding partitioned

system. Suresh (1992) and Agarwal et al.

(1995) provide numerical examples of this

outcome.

This paper introduces a new performance

measure, through-put. Through-put time

captures set-up times, thereby moving the

performance measure closer to a demand

response metric. To compare cellular

systems with functional systems, this study

builds a simulation model using flow time

and through-put performance measures.

Based on the analytical insights gained from

the extant literature, the simulation

experiments focus on scenarios and

conditions not previously considered.

[ 286]

Faizul Huq, Douglas A. Hensler

and Zubair M. Mohamed

A simulation analysis of

factors influencing the flow

time and through-put

performance of functional and

cellular layouts

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

Simulation model

Figure 1 presents the manufacturing layout

for the functional system. In the functional-

layout system jobs arrive randomly at the

first work center (1), which houses machines

1, 2, and 3, all of the same type. The jobs enter

a queue, if all the machines are busy, or

proceed to be processed, if the machines are

free. If the machine has already been set up

for that similar part-type, then the only time

spent is the processing time at the machine.

If a different part was previously set up, then

the machine processing time will include set-

up time and processing time. Jobs wait in

queue until a busy machine becomes

available. The moment a first machine

becomes available, a job moves to that

machine and the number in queue decreases

by one. Any machine of similar type can be

set up for any type of part and this flexibility

prevents long queues for available machines.

Once the job completes processing at the

first work center, it joins the queue at the

second work center, machines 4, 5, and 6. If

machines at the second work center are

available, then any set-up requirement is

determined. If setting-up is not required, the

job proceeds and processing time is recorded.

If set-up is required, the processing time for

the job will include the set-up time and the

processing time. The jobs run through a

similar sequence of operations at the third

and fourth work centers. Once the jobs

complete processing at the fourth work

center, their number is added to the total

number of processed jobs or finished goods

completed (through-put). The simulation

model for the functional system is shown in

the flowchart presented in Figure 2.

This model assumes only unidirectional

flow of jobs and no backtracking. The

operators also inspect the parts before

running them through to the next work

center. Processing time for a particular job

includes this inspection time. The amount of

time the job spends in the system is the flow

time. Flow time includes the time from

arrival at the first work center until the job's

departure after processing at the fourth work

center. The model includes the assumption

that the inter-arrival time between jobs is

exponentially distributed with a mean of 0.1

hours. In the simulation experiments using

functional models, the set-up and processing

times are assumed to be 3 and 0.1 hours,

respectively, and are based on an Erlang

distribution and no set-up reduction is

considered. A set-up reduction factor of 0.1 is

assumed for all simulation experiments

utilizing the functional layout. Also a regular

mover between work centers is based on a

uniform distribution varying between 20 and

60 minutes.

Figure 3 presents the manufacturing

layout for the cellular-layout system that is

achieved by partitioning the functional-

layout system. Cellular-layout system

consists of three designated cells (A, B, C),

each dedicated to a part family. There are

three part families, each containing one

product type. Each cell consists of four

machines, one machine from each of the four

machine types required by each part family.

Part family 1 consists of product type 1, part

family 2 contains product type 2, and part

Table I

Simulation models: operating characteristics and performance measures

Variable Partitioned system Unpartitioned system

Arrival rate

ps

= d/qk

ups

= D/q

Service rate

ps

= (T + tq)

-1

ups

= k

ups

Utilization (P

w

)

ps

/

ps

(1/k!)(

ups

/

ups

)

k

[k

ups/

(k

ups

±

ups

)] P

0

Jobs in queue (L

q

)

2

ps

/

ps

(

ps

±

ps

) (

ups

/

ups

)

k

ups

/

ups

/(k)! (k

ups

±

ups

)

2

P

0

Jobs in system (L

s

) L

q

+

ps

/

ps

Lq +

ups

/

ups

Time in queue (W

q

) L

q

/

ps

L

q

/

ups

Flow time (W) L

q

/

ps

+ 1/

ps

L

q

/

ups

+ 1/

ups

W/P L

s

*q

Steady state stability when

ps

ps

ups

ups

Minimum lot size (q

min

) dT/(k ± dt) dT/(k ± dt)

Steady state lot size (q*) Q

min

[1 +

p

(k/td)] q

min

[1 +

p

(k/td)

Through-put/unit of time (P

w

/W ± W

q

)/(unit of time) (P

w

/W ± Wq)/(unit of time)

Figure 1

Functional manufacturing system

[ 287]

Faizul Huq, Douglas A. Hensler

and Zubair M. Mohamed

A simulation analysis of

factors influencing the flow

time and through-put

performance of functional and

cellular layouts

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

family 3 comprises product type 3. In the

cellular-layout system jobs arrive randomly

at the first machine center for each cell.

The jobs enter in lot sizes which are

consistent across the three cells. The inter-

arrival time between jobs is exponentially

distributed with means of 0.1 hours for each

cell. The jobs enter a queue, if the machine

center is busy, or proceed to be processed, if

the machine center is available. The machine

centers (cells) are dedicated for a particular

part-type or product-type, belonging to the

specific family associated with the cell. If the

machine has already been set up for that

similar part-type, then the only time spent is

processing time at the machine. If a different

Figure 2

Simulation flow diagram for functional system

[ 288]

Faizul Huq, Douglas A. Hensler

and Zubair M. Mohamed

A simulation analysis of

factors influencing the flow

time and through-put

performance of functional and

cellular layouts

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

part was previously set up, then the parts

processing time will include set-up time and

processing time. Jobs wait in queue until a

machine is available.

The moment the machine center becomes

available, a job is directed at that machine

and the number in queue is reduced by one.

All the jobs belonging to a particular family

run through the same sequence of machine

centers in the cell. Queues tend to form

before machine centers in cellular set-ups,

unlike functional systems where queues exit

before the workcenters. The simulation

model for the partitioned system is shown in

the flowchart presented in Figure 4.

Once the job completes processing at the

first machine center, it joins the queue at the

second. If the second machine center frees up,

then it is ascertained if the machine center is

already set up or needs to be set up. If it does

not need to be set up, then the job is processed

and the processing time is recorded. If not,

the processing time for the job will include

the set-up time and processing time.

The jobs run through a similar sequence of

operations at the third and the fourth

machine centers. Once the jobs complete

processing at the fourth machine center of

the cell, their number is added to the total

number of processed jobs or finished goods

completed. This model assumes

unidirectional flow and no backtracking. The

operators inspect the parts before running

them through the next machine center.

Processing time for a particular job includes

inspection time.

Experimental design

The aim of the simulation experiment is to

compare the cellular performance with the

functional performance using through-put

and flow time performance metrics. The

variable input factors are lot size and set-up

time reduction factor and the fixed input

factors are the number of machines of similar

types, demand rate, and process time. The

simulation experiment uses the metrics

through-put and flow time to contrast

performance of a cellular-layout system with

a functional layout system. The experiment

assumes a high level of cell independence and

a given part is processed completely within

one cell. The full simulation experiment

involves 64 combinations of the two variable

input factors, wherein a number of cellular

modes with varying set-up time reduction

factors are compared with a fixed functional

set-up time across varying lot sizes.

The experiment considers a hypothetical

shop consisting of four types of machines

with three machines of each type, processing

three part-types or product-types. This

assumes that the parts belong to three

families, based on similarities in routing and

tooling requirements. Each family has one

part or product-type. Table II summarizes the

number of operations and machine types

required for each part family along with the

variable input factor levels.

The simulation for the cellular-layout

system considers seven set-up reduction

levels: 1.0, 0.8, 0.6, 0.4, 0.3, 0.2, and 0.1. The

functional-layout system uses a fixed S value

of 1.0. Eight lot sizes vary from 35 to 75 in five-

piece increments for both systems. The inter-

arrival time for each job reflects an

exponential distribution with a mean of 0.1

hours. The simulation experiment assumes

that the set-up and operation times are

independently distributed, with mean values

of three and 0.1 hours, respectively. These are

the same values Suresh (1992) uses. The mean

values are based on 2-Erlang distribution

(this distribution effectively represents

processing-time data in many real world

situations (Suresh, 1992)) with a coefficient of

variation of 0.7071 for each distribution.

To express the inter-cell transfer time the

experiment uses a uniform distribution with

a minimum of 20 minutes and a maximum of

60 minutes. The data for the simulation

experiment are the same as those in Suresh's

experiment, applied in a different

hypothetical shop setting and related to

values for the set-up times, processing time,

coefficient of variation in inter-cell transfer

times along with their distributions.

The amount of time the jobs spend in the

system is the flow time. It includes the time

for the arrival to the first machine center

until the job's departure after processing at

the fourth machine center. In simulation

experiments involving cellular systems, set-

up time reductions are assumed except in the

base case where set-up time is the same as if

no set-up time reduction was assumed (i.e. as

in the functional system). In successive

simulation experiments, the set-up time is

reduced in accordance with the set-up

Figure 3

Cellular manufacturing system

[ 289]

Faizul Huq, Douglas A. Hensler

and Zubair M. Mohamed

A simulation analysis of

factors influencing the flow

time and through-put

performance of functional and

cellular layouts

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

reduction factors () (i.e. 1.0, 0.8, 0.6, 0.4, 0.3,

0.2 and 0.1, where 0.8, for example, is a 20 per

cent reduction of the current set-up time).

The mean values for set-up and processing

times are three and 0.1 hours and are based

on an Erlang distribution. (This distribution

is known to effectively represent processing

time data in many real world situations). In

addition to set-up and processing times,

inter-cell transfer times are considered in the

simulation. A regular transfer was based on a

uniform distribution and times between 0.3

and 1.0 hours. The schematic for the cellular-

layout and the flowchart are presented in

Figure 4. The Erlang distribution parameters

are presented in Table III.

Figure 4

Simulation flow diagram for cellular system

[ 290]

Faizul Huq, Douglas A. Hensler

and Zubair M. Mohamed

A simulation analysis of

factors influencing the flow

time and through-put

performance of functional and

cellular layouts

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

Because the system under study is a non-

terminating one, steady state data have to be

collected for analysis. Since there are no

statistical procedures for doing this, rule of

thumb suggested by Law and Kelton (1982) is

employed. They suggest that initial

observation be discarded, as long as they

seem to increase or decrease steadily.

Theoretically, before the steady state is

reached, the mean of the difference between

successive job daily average through-put and

flow times should be non-zero, and it should

converge to zero after reaching steady state.

This is statistically verified by performing

the t-test with the standard deviations

estimated for the sample data. Analysis of the

simulation output shows that the steady state

condition is reached when the program is

run for 4,320 hours.

A continuous-run simulation procedure

(Kleijnen, 1975) was adopted, whereby the

simulation run was divided into a series of

sub-runs, and the data were collected during

even-numbered sub-runs. A run length of six

months (4,320 hours) was found to provide an

adequate sample of jobs as well.

Results and discussion

The flow time for the functional layout,

presented in Table IV, is seen to be

minimized around a lot size of 40. Therefore

this factor-level combination was treated as

the efficient functional layout or EFL. The

values presented in Tables IV and V are the

mean values for the two dependent variables:

flow time, and through-put for various factor-

level combinations. The range of values for

the lot size was between a minimum of 35 to a

maximum of 75, while the set-up reduction

factors utilized was 1.0 for the functional

system and seven levels for the cellular

manufacturing system (i.e. 1.0, 0.8, 0.6, 0.4, 0.3,

0.2, and 0.1). The shaded boxes in the two

Tables represent the EFL values for the flow

time and through-put.

An overall analysis of variance (ANOVA)

showed the significance of the two main

effects as well as several interactions effects.

Hence, the mean values for the two

dependent variables (flow time and through-

put) are shown for all factor-level

combinations, as Morris and Tersine (1990)

pointed out.

The intent of most statistical experiments

is to determine the effects of one or more

factors/independent variables (i.e. set-up

reduction factor, lot size) on the response or

dependent variable, which is the variable of

interest to be measured in the experiment

(i.e. flow time and through-put). The levels

are the values of the factors that are utilized

in the experiment (i.e. system, set-up

reduction factor, lot size). The treatments of

this simulation experiment are the factor-

level combinations utilized.

The experimental design consisted of the

independent random selection of

experimental units representing each

treatment (functional and cellular). The

objective was to compare the treatment

means. If the true, or population, means of

Table II

Experimental details

A B C

Part family data

No. of Items 1 1 1

Number of operations 4 4 4

Machine types required 1, 4, 7, 10 2, 5, 8, 11 3, 6, 9, 12

Demand distribution (parameter) Expon (0.1) Expon (0.1) Expon (0.1)

Experimental factors

Factor Levels

System Functional layout Cellular layout

Set-up reduction factor (S) 0.1 1.0, 0.8, 0.6, 0.4, 0.3, 0.2, 0.1

Lot size (q) 35, 40, 50, 55, 60, 65, 70, 75

Table III

Erlang distribution parameters

Mean (hrs)

Reduction

factor () EMN XK

3.0 1.0 1.50 2

2.7 0.9 1.35 2

2.4 0.8 1.20 2

2.1 0.7 1.05 2

1.8 0.6 0.90 2

1.5 0.5 0.75 2

1.2 0.4 0.60 2

0.9 0.3 0.45 2

0.6 0.2 0.30 2

0.3 0.1 0.15 2

0.1 0.033 0.05 2

[ 291]

Faizul Huq, Douglas A. Hensler

and Zubair M. Mohamed

A simulation analysis of

factors influencing the flow

time and through-put

performance of functional and

cellular layouts

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

the p treatments are u

1

, u

2

, u

3

, u

p

, then the

null hypothesis that the treatment means are

all identical against the alternative that at

least two of the treatment means differ will

be listed:

H

0

: u

1

= u

2

= . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . u

p

H

a

: At least two of the p treatment means

differ.

For the simulation experiment,

1

= (2 ± 1) = 1 degree of freedom

2

= (10 ± 2) = 8 degrees of freedom

= 0.05

Therefore, F at = 0.05 for the

1

= 1 and

2

= 8

is equal to 5.32.

The hypotheses tests to compare how p

treatment means differ are as follows:

H

O

: u

1

= u

2

= . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . u

p

H

a

: At least two of the p treatment means

differ.

The tests are conducted under the following

assumptions:

.

All p population probability distributions

are normal.

.

The p population variances are equal.

.

Samples are selected randomly and

independently from the respective

populations.

Rejection region: if F > Fc, reject the null

hypothesis (H

0

); and, if F < Fc, then fail to

reject the null hypothesis:

Fc F;

1

;

2

If F > F critical, then reject the null

hypothesis, meaning that the results are

significant. If F < F critical, then fail to reject

the null hypothesis, implying that the

differences are significant.

Therefore, on the basis of ANOVA, null

hypothesis of no difference between the

efficient functional system and the other

system (cellular) combinations was rejected

at a 0.05 level of significance.

The ANOVA test results showed that, in

the case of the flow times, the results were

statistically significant in about 15 of 48

system combinations considered. While in

the case of mean through-put values, the

ANOVA test conducted for the two systems

under investigation, the differences in goods

completed (through-put) between the layouts

was not statistically significant for all the

system combinations reviewed. This is

consistent with the results from a prior study

conducted by Shafer (1990), whose study

revealed that, though in a number of cases

the average time in the system was

statistically lower for the cellular system, the

differences in goods completed between the

Table IV

Simulation results ± flow times

Lot size (q)

SYS 35 40 50 55 60 65 70 75

FL 1.0 108.0 98.5 101.0 104.5 104.5 107.0 110.0 112.0

CM 1.0 293.0 160.0 216.3 218.0 218.0 272.3 273.0 291.0

0.8 258.3 149.3 160.0 163.6 189.0 233.6 234.6 245.0

0.6 206.6 115.0 136.5 140.0 160.6 200.0 201.5 213.5

0.4 168.0 97.9 118.0 126.0 132.3 157.0 168.0 181.0

0.3 144.6 84.4 95.0 104.33 117.6 139.0 147.3 155.0

0.2 123.0 75.4 86.0 94.8 100.4 116.4 126.0 137.5

0.1 103.1 64.0 71.0 80.3 89.0 108.3 108.3 116.1

Notes: FL (q = 40) (treated as EFL in italic)

Table V

Simulation results ± through-put

Lot size (q)

SYS 35 40 50 55 60 65 70 75

FL 1.0 106.5 100.0 100.0 111.0 90.5 98.0 105.0 113.0

CM 1.0 106.5 61.5 76.5 84.0 91.5 99.0 106.5 113.0

0.8 106.5 61.5 76.5 84.0 91.5 99.0 106.5 113.0

0.6 106.5 61.5 76.5 84.0 91.5 99.0 106.5 113.0

0.4 106.5 61.5 76.5 84.0 91.5 99.0 106.5 113.0

0.3 106.5 61.5 76.5 84.0 91.5 99.0 106.5 113.0

0.2 106.5 61.5 76.5 84.0 91.5 99.0 106.5 113.0

0.1 106.5 61.5 76.5 84.0 91.5 99.0 106.5 113.0

Note: FL (q = 40) (treated as EFL in italic)

[ 292]

Faizul Huq, Douglas A. Hensler

and Zubair M. Mohamed

A simulation analysis of

factors influencing the flow

time and through-put

performance of functional and

cellular layouts

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

layouts was not statistically significant for

the majority of cases. Thus, improved shop

performance in terms of reduced average

time spent in the system (flow time) was not

achieved at the expense of poor performance

in terms of the quantity of goods completed.

The graphs, Figures 5 and 6, present the

effects of lot size (q) and the set-up reduction

factor () on the performance measures of

flow time and through-put. As far as the flow

times are concerned, it is clear that the

cellular manufacturing system requires at

least a 70 per cent reduction of its set-up

times and a smaller lot size in order to

overtake the efficient functional layout in

terms of performance. In terms of the

through-put, there is a difference for the

smaller lot sizes used but, as we move

towards the larger lot sizes, the difference

between the layouts is insignificant.

Statistically, the results are insignificant,

meaning that the through-put is not different

for either the functional or the cellular

systems for a given level of lot size and set-up

reduction factor. Also noticeable from Table

V is that, for the cellular manufacturing

system, for different levels of set-up

reduction, there is no difference observed for

the mean values of through-put at different

lot sizes. In other words, reducing set-up time

has no bearing on the through-put at any

particular lot size under study.

Conclusions

This study, using a unique hypothetical shop

setting, has confirmed earlier studies

(Rathmill and Leonard, 1977), which

suggested that, for a given lot size, the

performance of a cellular system with an

insufficient degree of set-up reduction is

inferior to the corresponding functional

system. The partitioning of the work center

leads to an adverse effect on flow

characteristics, leading to a performance

deterioration. This is overcome by a

sufficient measure of set-up time reduction,

after which the benefits of the partitioned

system show up. The cellular system is

superior to the best of functional systems (i.e.

efficient functional system), for certain

combinations of values of lot size (q) and set-

up reduction factor (). Also noticed is the

insignificant difference between the two

systems as far as through-put is concerned. It

can be concluded that, even though there are

noticeable differences between the two

systems on the performance measure of flow

time for particular ranges of values of q and

, this was not achieved at the expense of

poorer performance in terms of the quantity

of goods completed (through-put).

The study reveals that a minimum amount

of set-up time reduction is necessary before

manufacturing establishments can start to

Figure 5

Flow time versus lot size

[ 293]

Faizul Huq, Douglas A. Hensler

and Zubair M. Mohamed

A simulation analysis of

factors influencing the flow

time and through-put

performance of functional and

cellular layouts

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

reap benefits of cellular layouts. Therefore,

before companies move to a cellular set-up

from their present job shop environment or

functional set-up, they must significantly cut

down their set-up times by at least 60-70 per

cent in order to be able to move to the next

stage in the JIT system and move the

machines into a cellular layout. Furthermore,

only after significant set-up time reductions

on the machines being utilized can the move

towards smaller lot sizes be made. Smaller lot

sizes would mean less waste in the form of

scrap, less work-in-process, and a quicker

response ability to the market, attributable to

the lower cycle times in operation.

Cellular manufacturing systems are

conducive to lowering the variabilities in job

arrivals and to implementing a just-in-time

mode of operation. As an extension, one may

study the effect of varying job arrivals on the

performance measures of flow time and

through-put. A sensitivity analysis is in

order by varying the processing times and

observing its impact on the performance

measures of flow time and through-put.

References

Agarwal, A., Huq, F. and Sarkis, J. (1995),

``Performance of manufacturing cells for

group technology: a parametric analysis'', in

Kamrami, A.K. et al. (Eds), Planning Design

and Analysis of Cellular Manufacturing

Systems, Elsevier Science, Amsterdam.

Burbidge, J.L. (1992), ``Change to group

technology: process organization is obsolete'',

International Journal of Production Research,

Vol. 30 No. 5, pp. 1209-19.

Edwards, G.A.B. (1974), Readings in Group

Technology, Machinery Publishing Co. Ltd,

London.

Flynn, B.B. and Jacobs, R.F. (1987), ``An

experimental comparison of cellular (group

technology) layout with process layout'',

Decision Sciences, Vol. 18, pp. 562-81.

Kleijnen, J.P.C. (1975), Statistical Techniques in

Simulation (Part II), Marcel Dekker, New

York, NY.

Law, A.M. and Kelton, W. (1982), Simulation

Modeling and Analysis, McGraw-Hill, New

York, NY.

Morris, J.S. and Tersine, R.J. (1990), ``A

simulation analysis of factors influencing the

attractiveness of group technology cellular

layouts'', Management Sciences, Vol. 36 No. 12.

Rathmill, K. and Leonard, R. (1977), ``The

fundamental limitations of cellular

manufacturing when contrasted with

efficient functional layout'', Proceedings of the

4th International Conference on Production

Research, pp. 523-46.

Shafer, S.M. (1990), ``A simulation study of

cellular versus functional layouts under a

variety of shop operating conditions'',

Proceedings of the Annual DSI Conference,

pp. 1714-16.

Suresh, N.C. (1992), ``Partitioning work centers

for group technology: analytical extensions

and shop-level simulation investigation'',

Decision Sciences, Vol. 23, pp. 267-90.

Figure 6

Through-put versus lot size

[ 294]

Faizul Huq, Douglas A. Hensler

and Zubair M. Mohamed

A simulation analysis of

factors influencing the flow

time and through-put

performance of functional and

cellular layouts

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

Further reading

Billatos, S.B. and Abdou, G.H. (1994), ``Integrated

modeling and analysis of cellular

manufacturing systems'', Flexible Automation

and Integrated Manufacturing.

Burbidge, J.L. and Dale, B.G. (1984), ``Planning the

introduction and predicting the benefits of

group technology'', Engineering Costs and

Production Economics, Vol. 8, pp. 117-28.

Cummings, G.F. (1980), ``Simulation model to

compare group technology and functional

layout'', Proceedings of the 1980 Summer

Computer Simulation Conference, pp. 626-30.

Flynn, B.B. (1987), ``Repetitive lots: the use of a

sequence-dependent set-up time scheduling

procedure in group technology and

traditional shops'', Journal of Operations

Management, Vol. 7 Nos 1 and 2.

Flynn, B.B. and Jacobs, F.R. (1986), ``A simulation

comparison of group technology with

traditional job-shop manufacturing'',

International Journal of Production Research,

Vol. 29 No. 5, pp. 1171-92.

Grayon, T.J. (1971), ``Group technology: a brief

international appraisal'', in Pekienik, J. (Ed.),

Advances in Manufacturing Systems, Paper

No. 5, Pergamon Press, Oxford.

Gupta, R.M. and Tompkins, J.A. (1982), ``An

examination of the dynamic behavior of part-

families in group technology'', International

Journal of Production Research, Vol. 20 No. 1,

pp. 73-6.

Howard, M.L. and Neumann, R.G. (1993), ``From

job-shop to JIT: a successful conversion'',

Production and Inventory Management

Journal, 3rd quarter.

Hyer, N.L. (1984), ``The potential of group

technology for US manufacturing'', Journal of

Operations Management, Vol. 4 No. 3.

Hyer, N.L. and Wemmerlov, U. (1993), ``Research

issues in cellular manufacturing'',

International Journal of Production Research,

Vol. 31 No. 1, pp. 191-202.

Jordan, P.C. and Frazier, G.V. (1993), ``Is the full

potential of cellular manufacturing being

achieved?'', Production and Inventory

Management Journal, Vol. 34 No. 1, pp. 70-2.

Lee, L.C. (1984), ``A study of a system

characteristics in a manufacturing cell'',

International Journal of Production Research,

Vol. 23 No. 6, pp. 1101-14.

Mosier, C. and Taube, L. (1985), ``The facets of

group technology and their impacts on

implementation: a state-of-the-art survey'',

International Journal of Management Science,

Vol. 13 No. 5, pp. 381-91.

Patterson, M.C. (1993), ``Analysis of set-up time at

constraint resources'', International Journal

of Production Research, Vol. 31 No. 4, pp. 845-9.

Wemmerlov, U. and Hyer, N.L. (1989), ``Cellular

manufacturing in the US industry: a survey of

users'', International Journal of Production

Research, Vol. 27 No. 9, pp. 1511-30.

[ 295]

Faizul Huq, Douglas A. Hensler

and Zubair M. Mohamed

A simulation analysis of

factors influencing the flow

time and through-put

performance of functional and

cellular layouts

Integrated Manufacturing

Systems

12/4 [2001] 285±295

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