Supporting Manufacturing With Simulation: Model Design, Development, & Deployment

Frank Chance, Ph.D., Jennifer Robinson, Ph.D.
FabTime Inc.
John Fowler, Ph.D., Arizona State University


In this paper, we identify and discuss the features we believe are key to the successful use of simulation as a manufacturing support tool. The discussion begins with three sample projects drawn from the authors' industrial and consulting experiences. Using these projects as motivation, we discuss the ideal project lifecycle model design, development, and deployment. For model design, we emphasize the importance of a clear and consistent specification, articulated in a written document. This specification should identify project customers, goals, and deliverables. We next review a range of model development options, stressing the existence of many non-simulation alternatives. We also discuss methods for model verification and validation. Finally, we consider the difficulties of model deployment, including simulation output analysis, data maintenance, and model integration. We close with several suggestions on how best to present simulation results to a management audience.

For a copy of this paper, please email [email protected] and include the title of the paper and your mailing address.

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