A Supervised Multi-Agent Approach for Operations Capacity Planning through Performances-driven Analysis

M. Calamita, P. Lunghi, R. Melioli, and F. Tonelli (Italy)


supervised multi-agent architecture, tactical capacity planning, capacity frequency increment, outsourcing volumes, multi-site production balance, operational analysis


Through a research collaboration with Atomos SpA, an Italian software vendor of Advanced Planning Systems (APS), authors have developed a tool in order to perform a tactical finite capacity planning over a multi-site production system as well as to optimize outsourcing volumes in order to drive supply logistics chain. The main objective of this tool, called Expert Plan (EP), is to balance capacity over different resources and to plan production supply requirements in order to determine the minimum cost for Master Production Schedule (MPS) and to match internal and external capacity of production system with customer and supplier constraints. Production balance is obtained through a performance driven analysis by using On Line Analytical Processing (OLAP) server allowing users to compare the result of each planned scenario. The output of this process is MPS. It is used to feed both Material Requirement Planning and Critical Resource Planning (MRP/CRP) and to define available production profiles for Available To Promise/Capable To Promise (ATP/CTP) procedures. The aim of the paper is to describe architecture functionalities in order to highlight its potential use in the APS market. Finally authors outline OLAP benefits for performance driven analysis. A first complete prototype is now under laboratories testing, while a simpler application module has been implemented in several medium industries in order to test its effectiveness.

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