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CELL FORMATION IN GROUP TECHNOLOGY: A SIMILARITY ORDER CLUSTERING APPROACH

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Author(s): Godfrey C. Onwubolu

Journal: South African Journal of Industrial Engineering
ISSN 1012-277X

Volume: 9;
Issue: 1;
Date: 2012;
Original page

ABSTRACT
Grouping parts into families which can be produced by a cluster of machine cells is the cornerstone of cellular manufacturing, which in turn is the building block for flexible manufacturing systems. Cellular manufacturing is a group technology (GT) concept that has recently attracted the attention of manufacturing firms operating under jobshop environment to consider redesigning their manufacturing systems so as to take advantage of increased throughput, reduction in work-in-progress, set-up time, and lead times; leading to product quality and customer satisfaction. The paper presents a generalised approach for machine cell formation from a jobshop using similarity order clustering technique for preliminary cell grouping and considering machine utilisation for the design of nonintergrouping material handling using the single-pass heuristic. The work addresses the shortcomings of cellular manufacturing systems design and implementations which ignore machine utilisations, group sizes and intergroup moves.
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