The Assembly Line Feeding Problem

3rd party logistics provider
A third party logistics provider takes over part of the logistical processes, like storage management or sequencing operations, of a manufacturing company.
Automated guided vehicle
An automated guided vehicle (AGV) is an inhouse transport vehicle operating without any guidance by an operator.
Assembly line
An assembly line describes a production area where products are assembled from multiple parts. This area may contain a moving conveyer belt.
Assembly line balancing problem
The assembly line balancing problem describes the assignment of tasks to workstations taking into account constraints, like time or space.
Assembly line feeding problem
The assembly line feeding problem describes the assignment of parts to line feeding policies.
Automated Storage/Retrieval System
Automated Storage/Retrieval Systems are used in warehouses to retrieve or store parts automatically without the requirement of an operator.
Border of line
The border of line describes an area close to workstations of an assembly line, which is used to store parts intermediately before they are used for assembly.
Enterprise Resource Planning
Enterprise resource planning systems are used in many industries, nowadays. They are used to manage and control all departments and the use of all resources within a company.
The term of Just-in-Time can be understood in a twofolded manner. First, it describes a manufacturing philosophy, which is also referred to as lean manufacturing. However, we want to emphasize the second meaning, wherein it describes the provision of material in the correct amount at the exact point in time, when needed.
Feeding policy
In literature, four line feeding policies (line stocking, kitting, kanban and sequencing) are distinguished, determining how parts are provided to assembly.
Line feeding policy, describing the provision of parts in small homogeneously filled bins at the border of line.
Line feeding policy, describing the provision of required parts within one heterogeneously filled container either at the border of line (stationary kit) or on the assembly line itself (traveling kit).
Line stocking
Line feeding policy, describing that a part is provided to assembly in the same way as it arrived from the previous production process or supplier.
Mass customization
The term mass customization describes the production of individual products, adjusted to the requirements of customers.
Material Requirements Planning
Nowadays, production is usually planned by the use of ERP systems. Within these systems, the calculation of the amount of required material for the planned production is called material requirements planning.
Material supply
The term material supply is sometimes used to denote line feeding. But, due to confusion with terms in the area of supply chain management, we recommend to use the term line feeding instead.
Original Equipment Manufacturer
Original equipment manufacturers, often described in the automotive sector, are the manufacturing companies producing the final goods which are sold to the customer.
Line feeding policy, in which multiple variants of a part are sorted into a load carrier according to the sequence of usage. This container is provided at the border of line.
Stock Keeping Unit
Stock keeping units are goods, identifiable by the use of a single identifying code, like a part number. All single physical items with the same identification code belong to the same stock keeping unit.
A supermarket describes a storage and logistical handling area, where parts are prepared for line feeding.