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According to Moore Plant layout is the

plan of or the act of planning, an optimum

arrangements of facilities, including
personnel, operating equipment, storage
space, material handling equipment and
all other supporting services along with
the design of the best structure to contain
these facilities.
Plant layout is the placing of right
equipment coupled with right method in
the right place to permit the processing of
a product in the most effective manner
through the shortest possible distance and
through the shortest possible time.
Since a layout once made can be
changed/modified only at the considerable
cost and disruption of production, plant
layout decisions are strategic decisions.
A good layout results in comforts,
convenience, appearance, safety,
efficiency and profits.
A poor layout causes congestion,
disruption in material flow, unnecessary
material handling, more scrap and rework,
unproductive movements and inefficiency.
The layout problems occur because of
one or more of the following
Decision to build a new plant
Re-layout of facilities to meet
changes in demand.
Introduction of new product.
Withdrawal of obsolete facilities.
Changes in product design.
Adoption of new safety standards.
Overcome the deficiencies of the
existing layout.
Through an efficient layout, the organisation
can attain the following objectives:
1.Economy in handling of materials, WIP and
finished goods.
2.Minimisation of production delays.
3.Lesser WIP and minimum manufacturing
cycle time.
4.Efficient utilisation of available space.
5.Easy supervision and better production
6.Greater flexibility for changes in product
design and for future expansion.
7.Better working conditions.
Objectives of layout in a service
organization are likely to include

1. Provide maximum comfort and

convenience to customers.
2. Cater to customers taste and
preferences and liking.
3. Provide most congenial and pleasant
1. Overall integration of factors:
A good layout is one that integrates men,
materials, machines and supporting activities
and others in a way that the best
compromise is obtained.
2. Minimum movement:
A good layout is one that permits the
minimum movement between the operations.
3. Uni-directional flow:
A good layout is one that makes the
materials move only in the forward direction,
towards stage of completion, without any
4. Effective use of available space:
A good layout is one that makes effective
use of available space both horizontal and
5. Maximum visibility:
A good layout is one that makes men,
machines and materials readily observable
at all times.
6. Maximum accessibility:
A good layout is one that makes all servicing
and maintenance points readily accessible.
7. Minimum handling:
A good layout is one that reduces the
material handling activity to its minimum.
8. Inherent safety:
A good layout is one that makes the plant
safer for the work men.
9. Safe and improved environment:
A good layout is one that makes the work
centres and the area around them satisfying
to the work men.
10. Maximum flexibility:
A good layout is one that can be altered later
without much cost.
11. Maximum security:
A good layout is one that safeguards the plant
and machinery against fire, theft etc. without
employing too many cages, doors and
Layouts are basically of three types:

1. Process or functional layout.

2. Product or Line layout.
3. Project or Fixed Position layout.
4. Combination layout or mixed layout.
Process layout also called layout by function
is generally associated with batch production.
The factory is divided into process units (or
departments), and within these process units
all similar facilities are grouped together.
1. Straight line arrangement.
2. U- shaped arrangements.
3. Zig - zag arrangement.
4. Circular arrangement.
Process type of layout is suitable when
1. the products are non-standard.
2. there is wide variations in the processing
times of individual operations.
1. Lower capital investment on account
comparatively less number of machines and
lower cost of general purpose machines.
2. Higher utilization of available equipment.
3. Greater flexibility in regards to allocation of
work to equipment and workers.
4. Workers attain greater skills since they have
to attend to one type of machines and
5. Imbalance of work in one section does not
affect the working of the other sections.
6. New jobs with varying contents and
different operations sequences can be
taken up without any difficulty.
7. Variety of jobs make the work interesting to
8. Breakdown of equipment, absenteeism of the
workmen and/or non availability of certain
materials does not hamper the manufacturing
activity in the shop floor.

1. For the volume of production, space
requirements are higher.
2. Materials handling cannot be mechanised
which adds to extra cost.
3. Work in progress inventory is higher since jobs
have to queue for each operation.
4.Routing and scheduling is difficult since
different jobs have different operation
5. Inspection requires to be done after each
operation as material passes to the next
department. This causes delays and results
in higher cost of inspection.
6. Setup costs are high because of frequent
changes of jobs.
Product layout is also called Layout by
The layout of the plant, shape and size of
its buildings, location of services and
storage yards, position of materials
handling equipment is such that material
flows unidirectional and at the steady
The equipment if necessary is duplicated
to avoid backtracking and to ensure that
materials always flow in the forward
direction towards stage of completion.
Product A Product B Product C
L Drilling M

Gear Sh Grinding Drilling

Deburr L Deburr

H.T. M Presses

Grinding Deburr W

Product type layout is suitable when:
The products are standard and require to be
produced in large quantities.
The products have reasonably stable
The processing times of individual
operations is more or less equal.
Uninterrupted supply of materials can be
Examples are assembly line for automobiles,
refrigerators, radios, TV sets, transformers,
pressure cookers etc.
Single products like Steel, Sugar, Cement,
Manufacturing cycle is small which reduces
work in process.
Material handling is minimum and automatic.
Space required is small.
Work is simplified by breaking into elemental
tasks which are mechanised where ever
QC is easy to exercise and more effective.
Deliver commitments can be maintained.
Production control is simplified due to lower
product variety.
Material requirements can be scheduled
easily and more accurately.
The changes in products and their work
content necessitate the change in the layout
of the machinery.
All machines may not be used to their full
Manufacturing cost is heavily dependent upon
volume of production.
Expansion of capacity by addition of few
machines is not possible.
Breakdown of any one the machines in the
line renders other machines idle till it is
Specialisation creates monotony/boredom,
and reduces labour turn over.
Heavy materials, components or sub-
assemblies, under this layout remain fixed at
one place. Men, machines and tools are
brought to the location to complete the job.
Minor components and sub-assemblies are also
brought to the site for assembly.
This type of layout is suitable
a) When one or few pieces of an identical
product are to be manufactured.
b) When assembly consists of a large
number of heavy parts, the cost of
transportation of which is very high.
Examples are Aeroplanes, ships, locomotives,
large turbines, heavy machinery, Pr.Vessels etc.
A mixed layout is the combination of process and
product layout.
Mixed layouts are generally used when the
1. Product contains lot many components
and parts.
2. When assembly consists of a large
number of heavy parts, the cost of
transportation of which is very high.
In this type of layout, the parts are
produced on facilities arranged in a
process type of layout and they are
assembled using product type of layout.
The development of good layout is dependent
upon the quality and quantity of data on
various factors influencing the layout.
Important tools and techniques helpful in the
layout analysis are as follows:
1. Process Charts.( Operation & Flow)
2. Diagrams ( Flow & String)
3. Travel Chart ( Process Layout)
4. REL Chart( Relation ship )
5. Templates( 2D models)
6. Scale Models ( 3D models)
7. Load Path Matrix Method.
A plant is a place , where men, materials,
money, equipment, machinery etc. are
brought together for manufacturing products.
Factors affecting Plant location are:
1. Nearness to Raw material
2. Transport facilities.
3. Nearness to markets
4. Availability of Labour
5. Availability of Fuel & Power
6. Availability of water.
7. Climatic Conditions
8. Financial and other Aids.
9. Land.
10.Community attitude.
11.Presence of related industries.
12.Existence of hospitals,
marketing centres, schools,
banks, post offices, clubs, etc.
13.Local bye-laws, taxes, building
ordinances, etc.
14.Housing facilities.
16.Facilities for expansion