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An anticipative scheduling approach with controllable processing times

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2010-06-01
Gürel, Sinan
Korpeoglu, Ersin
Akturk, M. Selim
In practice, machine schedules are usually subject to disruptions which have to be repaired by reactive scheduling decisions. The most popular predictive approach in project management and machine scheduling literature is to leave idle times (time buffers) in schedules in coping with disruptions, i.e. the resources will be under-utilized. Therefore, preparing initial schedules by considering possible disruption times along with rescheduling objectives is critical for the performance of rescheduling decisions. In this paper, we show that if the processing times are controllable then an anticipative approach can be used to form an initial schedule so that the limited capacity of the production resources are utilized more effectively. To illustrate the anticipative scheduling idea, we consider a non-identical parallel machining environment, where processing times can be controlled at a certain compression cost. When there is a disruption during the execution of the initial schedule, a match-up time strategy is utilized such that a repaired schedule has to catch-up initial schedule at some point in future. This requires changing machine-job assignments and processing times for the rest of the schedule which implies increased manufacturing costs. We show that making anticipative job sequencing decisions, based on failure and repair time distributions and flexibility of jobs, one can repair schedules by incurring less manufacturing cost. Our computational results show that the match-up time strategy is very sensitive to initial schedule and the proposed anticipative scheduling algorithm can be very helpful to reduce rescheduling costs. (C) 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.