Articles

A Discrete Event Simulation Model to Test Multimodal Strategies for a Greener and More Resilient Wood Supply in Austria


Increasing occurrence of natural disturbances such as windstorms and high snow cover as well as uncer-tainty according to queuing and lead times, bottlenecks, utilization, stock level, wagon and truck availability and machine breakdowns lead to supply chain risks and seasonal irregularities in wood harvest and transport. Innovative multimodal systems via rail terminals offer the potential to increase buffer capacity and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Therefore, a train terminal is included in a new virtual environment spanning the whole wood supply chain and enabling manager involvement in testing, analysis and evalua-tion of a complex multimodal transport system. The simulation model facilitates carrying out experiments and scenario designs for strategy comparisons in workshops with supply chain managers and provides in-tuitive decision support by animation and a KPI-cockpit. Adapting collaborative supply chain control strat-egies in participatory simulation enhances the development of advanced risk management and therefore improves supply chain resilience, efficiency and sustainability.

Flexibility as an Enabler for Carbon Dioxide Reduction in a Global Supply Chain: a Case Study From the Semiconductor Industry


Due to the significant rise in environmental awareness of companies and customers for the past few years, research on how to optimize business with respect to carbon dioxide (CO2) emission has gained more attention and importance. This paper investigates how flexibility can be an enabler for CO2 reduction over a global production network especially in a capital intensive and high volatile market like the semiconductor one. We tested this hypothesis with discrete-event simulation experiments based on a case study obtained from a semiconductor company. The study indicates that global supply chains (SCs), like those in the semiconductor industry, should be equipped with a certain level of flexibility to cope with demand volatility if the CO2 burden due to transportation is low compared to those due to manufacturing. This flexibility provides ecological benefits to companies in reducing the carbon footprint of their products.

Strategic Supply Chain Design for an Austrian Winter Road Service Provider


Snowplow operations are critical for public safety and economic success in countries where difficult driving conditions occur in winter. Specifically, the salt supply ensuring good driving conditions is a crucial factor. In this paper, the strategic supply chain design of a winter service provider in Austria is investigated. Two research directions on the influence of bigger and fewer salt silos per depot and the logistic costs for a unique summer salt purchasing strategy are addressed applying two independent solution approaches. On the same data basis, a simulation model is developed and a mixed integer linear problem is applied to answer the respective research questions.

An Agent-based Simulation Framework for Supply Chain Disruptions and Facility Fortification


Fortifying facilities within a supply chain network can mitigate facility failures caused by disruptions. In this study we build an agent-based simulation model to study the r-interdiction median problem with fortification (RIMF), considering two types of facility disruptions: naturally-caused and human-caused disruptions. The objective of this study is to develop a simulation model that analyzes facility disruption and fortification as a repeated Stackelberg competition, where fortification decisions are made anticipating disruptions.

Simulating Recovery Strategies to Enhance the Resilience of a Semiconductor Supply Network


Enhancing supply chain resilience is of vital importance in today’s business to manage and mitigate the risks, especially in the semiconductor industry challenged with intrinsic long cycle times and short product life-cycles. Transferring production from a primary site to an alternative site after a disaster is one of the strategies to ensure resilience of the supply network. In this study, different types of alternative sites with various levels of preparedness are investigated. A discrete-event simulation is used to evaluate their operational and financial impacts under four different disruption scenarios. The simulation outcomes demonstrate unexpected positive benefits of various alternative sites in terms of fast recovery and resilience building.

Optimizing Production Allocation with Simulation in The Fashion Industry: a Multi-Company Case Study


Production Planning and Control (PP&C) has been deeply analyzed in the literature, both in general terms and focusing on specific industries, such as the fashion one. The paper aims to add a contribution in this field presenting an optimization model for the Fashion Supply Chain (FSC), developed considering an interdependent environment composed by a group of focal companies that work with both exclusive and not-exclusive suppliers. The proposed framework will combine simulation and optimization models based on parameters, decision variables, constraints and Objective Functions (OFs) collected through a literature review. The framework has been developed in a parametrical way, in order to fit the peculiarities of the different actors operating along the FSC. The empirical implementation of the framework has been conducted using data coming from fashion companies belonged to the same network, considering rush orders as stochastics events for the scenario analysis and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) assessment.

On Agent-Based Modeling in Semiconductor Supply Chain Planning


Supply chain (SC) planning in the semiconductor industry is challenged by high uncertainties on the demand side as well as a complex manufacturing process with non-deterministic failure modes on the production side. Understanding the complex interdependencies and processes of a supply chain is essential to realize opportunities and mitigate risks. However, this understanding is not easy to achieve due to the complexity of the processes and the non-deterministic human behavior determining supply chain planning performance. Our paper argues for an agent-based approach to understand and improve supply chain planning processes using an industry example. We give an overview of current work and elaborate on the need for integrating human behavior into the models. Overall, we conclude that agent-based simulation is a valuable method to identify favorable and unfavorable conditions for successful planning.

A Case Study for Simulation and Optimization Based Planning of Production and Logistics Systems


This paper introduces a practical approach for the comprehensive simulation based planning and optimization of the production and logistics of a discrete goods manufacturer. Although simulation and optimization are well-established planning aides in production and logistics, their actual application in the field is still scarce, especially in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). This is largely due to the complexity of the planning task and lack of practically applicable approaches for real-life planning scenarios. This paper provides a case study from the food industry, featuring a comprehensive planning approach based on simulation and optimization. The approach utilizes an offline-coupled multilevel simulation to smooth production and logistics planning via optimization, to optimally configure the production system using discrete-event simulation and to optimize the logistics network utilizing an agent-based simulation. The connected simulation and optimization modules can enhance the production logistics significantly, potentially providing a reference approach for similar industry applications.

A simulation approach for multi-stage supply chain optimization to analyze real world transportation effects


The cost effective management of a supply chain under stochastic influences, e.g. in demand or the replenishment lead time, is a critical issue. In this paper a multi-stage and multi-product supply chain is investigated where each member uses the (s,Q)-policy for inventory management. A bi-objective optimization problem to minimize overall supply chain costs while maximizing service level for retailers is studied. Optimal parameter levels for reorder points and lot sizes are evaluated. In a first step a streamlined analytical solution approach is tested to identify optimal parameter settings. For real applications, this approach neglects the dynamics and interdependencies of the supply chain members. Therefore a simulation-based approach, combining an evolutionary algorithm with simulation, is used for the optimization. The simulation-based approach further enables the modelling of additional real world transportation constraints. The numerical simulation study highlights the potential of simulation-based optimization compared to analytical models for multi-stage multi-product supply chains.

A Simulation-Based Investigation of Freight Transportation Policy Planning and Supply Chains


Regional freight transportation policy planning is a difficult task, as few policy-planners have adequate tools to aid their understanding of how various policy formulations affect this complex, socio-technical system. In this paper, we develop a proof-of-concept model to simulate the impacts of public policies on freight transportation in a simulated region. We use the techniques of multi-disciplinary system design and optimization to analyze the formulation of regional freight transportation policies and examine the relative effects of policies and exogenous forces on the region in order to provide insight into the policy-planning process. Both single objective and multi-objective analysis is performed to provide policy-planners with a clear understanding of the trade-offs made in policy formulation.