Manufacturing cell formation and its balance in just-in-time (JIT) type production environments have usually been studied separately in the literature. This practice is unrealistic since both problems interact and affect each other when the cells are operating. This chapter proposes a methodology to design multiple manufacturing cells and simultaneously balance their workload. The cells considered are U-shaped and process mixed models of product families. A nonlinear integer programming mathematical model is proposed, which integrates cell formation and their balancing, considering various production factors. For illustration, the method is applied to the redesign of a rack manufacturing process.
Part of the book: Mass Production Processes