Manufacturing and Logistics News
ProModel Simulation Helps Resolve Steel Plant Raw Material Unloading Yard Constraints
An integrated steel plant in India is planning an expansion of capacity by three million metric tons (MT). Major raw materials required for steel production are iron ore, coal, coke, limestone etc. These are received from various sources by the plant using railways in rakes. To unload the materials, the plant has a set of unloading equipment and railway locomotives. The locomotives move the rakes through the raw material routing network to unload the material across the material handling equipment which is then processed by the steel making units.
With the expansion in production capacity, the inbound rakes for the raw materials are expected to increase, which might cause bottlenecks for the unloading facilities and constrain rake movements within the inbound material handling area. It is suspected that the current equipment and material handling network has excess capacity which might accommodate the increase of inbound raw materials. The adequacy of the number of plant locomotives and unloading capability of facilities needs to be thus determined. Additionally, the rakes for raw materials are provided by an external railways agency, having late charges for delays in return of rakes beyond a certain time limit. The clock starts from the time the rake reaches the reception yard of the plant and ends on handing over the empty rake to the railway agency. It is also unknown whether the increased rake movement can create congestion in the material handling network leading to excessive turnaround times and hence increased late charges.
Given the complexity of the material handling network and its operation, a traditional analytical approach to determine capacity adequacy and congestion is too difficult.
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ProModel on the Lean Nation!
ProModel’s Bruce Gladwin (V.P., Consulting) and Dave Tucker (Director, LSS Initiatives) join web and radio host Karl Wadensten on “The Lean Nation” to discuss the benefits of ProModel simulation in lean initiatives. Enjoy!
ProModel Blog: ProModel on the Lean Nation