Project Aim

Material Flow Simulation was a commercial project which established the current state of the material flow for the trim line at the Ford Valencia plant through the generation of a simulation model.

A scoping exercise was carried out to capture all the right data from suppliers. This was used to define the right assumptions for the first model to be built. The final simulation included a visual representation of the different flows of tow meters between the warehouses and trim line, highlighting the congestion points and showing relevant information for the different KPIs set.

The Challenge

The challenge was to generate a material flow simulation model which:

- Represented the different flows of tow motors between the warehouses and the trim line for each of the different processes considered: Kanban, Sequencing and Supermarket Calls.

Provide feedback on the following KPIs:

-Tow motor utilisation: the utilisation rate of the resource pool of tow motors is displayed in a dynamic chart

- Operating tow motors: the population of tow motors within the road network is constantly tracked, the dynamic charts below show how many tow motors are active at every moment for each of the processes

- POF deliveries: the number of POF’s covered by each of the processes is recorded

- Enable the user to run different parameter variation experiments via a customised user inter-

The Solution

A model which helped Ford to better understand how the system works, which are the optimal routes for the tow motors and how to better deal with congestion points and/or Health & Safety hazards.

Ford was placed into an advantageous position, with regards to scheduling and sequencing material flow for new project developments, due to the simulation.

The following objectives were achieved:

- Data capture from Ford and the corresponding suppliers

- Data composition

- Development of a conceptual model

- Development of the full logic of the model

- Verification & validation

- Run the model for an enough period of time to achieve steady state and captured the different statistics to provide feedback on the different KPIs.


November 2017 - May 2018 (7 months)

Project Members

HSSMI and Ford Motor Company