Flexibility analysis of a surface mount technology electronic assembly plant: An integrated model using simulation

  • Serge Lambert
  • Georges Abdulnour
  • Jocelyn Drolet
  • Bernard Cyr


This paper focuses on developing an integrated model using simulation to evaluate the effect of several independent variables on the performance of a surface mount technology (SMT) production line. Real data and an existing SMT line from a high product mix/low volume electronics manufacturer are used to conduct the analysis. The independent variables used are set-up formation policies (group technology based family grouping methods), machine feeder types, similarity factor in set-up formation, parts reduction at design step of products, and inter-families and intra-family scheduling rules. In addition, a new method of grouping products is proposed. The measures of performance evaluated by the model are average lead time, average work-in-process (WIP) inventory and average set-up time. Data analysis shows that the proposed method of grouping products will reduce set-up time and lead time while slightly increasing WIP. The proposed simulation model helps assess the effects of some of the independent variables on line performance. Recommendations are made in order to help the user choose the best alternative to improve production line productivity and flexibility.


Electronics assembly Group technology Manufacturing flexibility Scheduling Simulation 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Abdulnour G, Dudek RA, Smith ML (1995) Effect of maintenance policies on the just-in-time production system. International Journal of Production Research 33(2):565–583Google Scholar
  2. Barena A, Sipper D (1993) Set-up reduction in PCB automated assembly. Computer Integrated Manufacturing Systems 6(1):18–26CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bhaskar G, Narendran TT (1996) Grouping PCBs for set-up reduction: a maximum spanning tree approach. International Journal of Production Research 34(3):621–632Google Scholar
  4. Bombardier Sea-Doo/Ski-Doo Chair (1994), JIT Guide Self Test Working document. Institut de recherche en PME, Université du Québec à Trois-RivièresGoogle Scholar
  5. Carmon TF, Maimon OZ, Dar-El EM (1989) Group set-up for printed circuit board assembly. International Journal of Production Research 27(10):1795–1810Google Scholar
  6. Drolet J, Abdulnour G, Rheault M (1996) The Cellular Manufacturing Evolution. Computers and Industrial Engineering 31(1/2):139–142CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Fisher D (1995) The just-in-time self test. Irwin Professional Publicizing, Chicago, ILGoogle Scholar
  8. Fathi Y, Taheri J (1989) A mathematical model for loading the sequencers in a printed circuit pack manufacturing environment. International Journal of Production Research 27(8):1305–1316Google Scholar
  9. Frazier GV (1996) An evaluation of group scheduling heuristics in a flow-line manufacturing cell. International Journal of Production Research 34(4):959–979MATHMathSciNetGoogle Scholar
  10. Gerwin Donald (1982) Do’s and don’ts of computerized manufacturing. Harvard Business Review 66(2):107–116Google Scholar
  11. Hashiba S, Chang TC (1991) PCB assembly setup reduction using group technology. Computers and Industrial Engineering 21(1–4):453–457CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Leon VJ, Peters BA (1998) A comparison of setup strategies for printed circuit board assembly. Computers and Industrial Engineering 34(1):219–234CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Luzzato D, Perona M (1993) Cell formation in PCB assembly based on production quantitative data. Europian Journal of Operational Research 69(3):312–329CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Maimon O, Dar-El EM, Carmon, TF (1993) Set-up saving schemes for printed circuit board assembly. Europian Journal of Operational Research 70(2):177–190CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Maimon O, Shtub A (1991) Grouping methods for printed circuit board assembly. International Journal of Production Research 29(7):1379–1390Google Scholar
  16. McGinnis LF, Ammons JC, Carlyle M, Crammer L, Depuy GW, Ellis KP, Tovey CA, Xu H (1992) Automated process planning for printed circuit card assembly. IIE Transactions 24(4):18–30Google Scholar
  17. Montgomery D (2001) Design and analysis of experiments, 5th Edition, John Wiley & Sons Inc, New York, NYGoogle Scholar
  18. Moyer LK, Gupta SM (1996) Simultaneous component sequencing and feeder assignment for high speed chip shooter machines. Journal of Electronic Manufacturing 6(4):271–305CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Newbury P (1990) Surface mount assembly machines. Electronic Manufacturing and Production 38–39Google Scholar
  20. Peters BA, Subramanian GS (1996) Analysis of partial setup strategies for solving the operational planning problem in parallel machine electronic assembly systems. International Journal of Production Research 34(4):999–1021Google Scholar
  21. Randhawa S, McDowell E, Faruqui SD (1985) An integer programming application to solve sequencer mix problems in printed circuit board production. International Journal of Production Research 23(3):543–552Google Scholar
  22. Rajagopalan R, Batra JL (1975) Design of cellular production systems: A graph-theoretic approach. International Journal of Production Research 13(2):567–579Google Scholar
  23. Reddy V, Narendran TT (2003) Heuristics for scheduling sequence-dependent set-up jobs in flow line cells. International Journal of Production Research 41(1):193–206CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Sadiq M, Landers L, Don Taylors G (1993) A heuristic algorithm for minimizing total production time for a sequence of jobs on a surface mount placement machine. International Journal of Production Research 31(6):1327–1341Google Scholar
  25. Smed J, Salonen K, Johnsson M, Johtela T, Nevalainen OS (2003) Grouping PCBs with minimum feeder changes. International Journal of Flexible Manufacturing Systems 15(1):19–35CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Shtub A, Maimon O (1992) Role of similarity measures in PCB grouping procedures. International Journal of Production Research 30(5):973–983Google Scholar
  27. Stecke KE, Ramon N (1995) FMS planning decisions, operating flexibilities, and system performance. IEEE Transactions in Engineering and Management 42(1):82–90CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Sule D (1992) A heuristic procedure for component scheduling in printed circuit pack sequencers. International Journal of Production Research 30(5):1191–1208MathSciNetGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  • Serge Lambert
    • 1
    • 2
  • Georges Abdulnour
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jocelyn Drolet
    • 1
    • 2
  • Bernard Cyr
    • 2
  1. 1.Chaire de recherche Bell pour des PME de classe mondiale, INRPMEUniversité du Québec à Trois-RivièresTrois-RivièresCanada
  2. 2.Department of Industrial EngineeringUniversité du Québec à Trois-RivièresTrois-RivièresCanada

Personalised recommendations