Assembly line balancing with positional constraints, task assignment restrictions and station paralleling: A case in an electronics company

TUNÇEL MEMİŞ G., Topaloglu Ş. A.

COMPUTERS & INDUSTRIAL ENGINEERING, vol.64, no.2, pp.602-609, 2013 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 64 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2013
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.cie.2012.11.006
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.602-609
  • Keywords: Assembly line balancing, Integer programming, Workpiece positioning constraints, Task assignment restrictions, Parallel stations, MIP APPROACH, MODEL, DESIGN, WORKSTATIONS, TIME, COST
  • Dokuz Eylül University Affiliated: Yes


In this paper, we present a real-life Assembly Line Balancing Problem for an electronics manufacturing company. The main characteristics of the problem are as follows: (i) a set of operations are related to the front part of the workpiece and others are related to the back part of the workpiece, which in turn makes all tasks dependent on the position of the workpiece, (ii) some of the tasks must be executed on the same station and no other tasks should be assigned to this station due to technological restrictions, (iii) parallel stations are allowed to increase the line efficiency at the required production rate and to overcome the problem of assigning tasks with operation times that exceed the cycle time. Initially, the problem is formulated as a 0-1 integer programming model and solved using CPLEX solver. Then, the effect of alternative work schedules such as multiple shifts and overtime on the expected labor cost of the line is analyzed. Considering alternative work schedules while balancing the line for corresponding cycle times allows us to select an efficient assembly line for the company, resulting in a lower labor cost and a more balanced line with respect to the operation times and the activity of the workers at each station. Lastly, a computational study is conducted to evaluate the performance of the proposed model. It is found that the model is capable of producing high quality solutions in reasonable solution times. (c) 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.