WHITE PAPER Shop Optimization White Paper

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    AISTECH 2010Presented by RAD-CON, Inc

    Michael W. McDonaldVice President Operations

    TAKINGBATCHANNEALINGOPTIMIZATIONTOTHENEXTLEVEL.

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    AbstractMoreefficientBAFoperationnotonlyincreasesthroughputandprofitabilitybutalso

    improvesscheduling

    and

    effectiveness

    of

    downstream

    operations.

    With

    the

    current

    use

    of

    softwareforstacking,heatingandcoolingcycleoptimization,annealfacilitiesareachieving

    significantefficiencies.

    Yet,todaymorethanever,theneedtosqueezeoutmoreateveryturniscritical.

    Sowhatcanbeconsideredthenextgenerationinannealoptimization? Andhowcanmore

    outputbe

    obtained

    without

    adding

    manpower

    or

    equipment?

    Thecurrentfocusofoptimizationtypicallyemphasizesimprovingsoftwareinvolvedwith

    inventorymanagementandheating/coolingcyclemanagement. Butintakingabroaderviewof

    theannealshop,anewoptimizationmodelmoredemonstrativelydirectsthediverseactivities

    ontheshopfloortooptimizeoperations,craneandequipment,andflooroperatorandgeneral

    managerefficiency.

    Therearetwostepsforthisnew,nextgenerationoptimization.

    FirstisShopOptimizationwhichutilizesheating,coolingandstackingmodeloutputsbutgoesfurtherbydeterminingthemostefficientuseofmanandmachinebyidentifyingand

    minimizingthedelayoftheconstraintresource.

    SecondisOperationsPlanningwhichdirectsresourceactivitiesaccordingtotheShopOptimizationoutput,suchasrealtimetaskassignmentstothecrane,floor,andfurnace

    operators.Withtheadditionofacrane(locator),navigationalfunctionalityisavailablethat

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    maximizesefficiencyofcranemovement. Together,thisnewmodelprovidesthehighest

    utilizationofassetsintheBAF.

    ThisnewmodelsqueezesmoreoutofHNorhydrogenBAF,eventhoseoperatingamixture

    ofequipmentmanufacturers.

    RADCONwillpresentthebenefitsoftheirShopOptimizationandOperationsPlanning

    softwaretobeinstalledaspartoftheBAFportionoftheNewCRMprojectatSAILsBokaro

    SteelPlant.

    More

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    IntroductionToremaincompetitiveinthecurrenteconomicclimate,steelcompaniesneedtofocustheir

    attentionon

    the

    cost

    of

    production.

    This

    challenge

    will

    be

    complex

    as

    the

    economy

    recovers

    withreshapedmarketsandasnewandidledsteelcapacityisbroughtbackonline. Theability

    tobeflexibleandoperateefficientlyduringthesedynamicmarketconditionswillbekeyfactors

    toturningaprofit.

    SAILsprojectinBokaroforanewColdRollingMill(CRM)complexincludescuttingedge

    automationtocontroloperatingcostswhilemaintainingtheflexibilitytoadapttochangesin

    themarket.Themill,whichisdesignedforautomotiveapplications,willutilizeRADCONsBatch

    AnnealFurnace(BAF)modelingcapabilitiestoeasilyshiftproductmixwithoutequipment

    changesorproductiondisruptions.

    BokarowilloperatewiththenewCAPSShopOptimizationModelwhichbuildsonthe

    processmodelspreviouslydevelopedbyRADCONtooptimizetheheatingandcoolingtimesof

    thecoilsaswellasthestackingarrangementofcharges.ShopOptimizationtakesabroaderview

    oftheannealshoptoincludetheequipment,cranes,andoperatingpersonnel.Themodelnot

    onlycreatesaplantooptimizetheprocessbutalsoimplementstheplanthroughrealtime

    communicationstothecranes,transfercars,andpersonnel.

    Thisnewsoftwarefurtheroptimizestheprocesstomaximizethroughputcapacity,minimize

    operatingcosts,andmaintainthehighestlevelofmechanicalpropertyconsistency.

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    BAFOptimizationTherearethreelayersofoptimizationthatapplytotheannealshop,eachlayerbuildingon

    theprevious.

    The

    first

    layer

    addresses

    the

    coil

    and

    control

    of

    the

    heating

    and

    cooling

    processing

    manner. ThesecondlayerofBAFOptimizationaddressesthegroupingofindividualcoilsinto

    batchesorcharges,consideringeachindividualcoilsneedsaswellasthechargeasawhole.

    Finallythethirdlayertakesintoaccountthechargesalongwiththeequipmentandmanpower

    intheshoptoarrangeandmanagethe

    completeshop. Itisfromthisthird

    layerthatnewefficienciesarebeing

    achievedintheBAFthroughthe

    additionofoptimizationmodeling.

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    Figure1:BAFOptimizationLayers

    Theactivitiesaddressedbyeachof

    theselayersarehandledateveryshop

    witheither

    manual

    decision

    making

    or

    withtheuseofproductionmodels.

    RADCONsComputerizedAnnealing

    ProcessSoftware(CAPS)whichisusedtoprocessover50%ofallbatchannealedsheetsteel

    inNorthAmericahandleseachoftheselayerswithdifferentsoftwaremodules. RADCONs

    newestsoftwareimprovestheefficiencyofLayer3byminimizingtheprocessingtimeofcoils

    withinBAFandthereforereducingworkinprocessinventory,increasingpredictabilityofthe

    system,andmostimportantlymaximizingthethroughputcapacityoftheshop.

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    ImprovingShopPerformancewithOptimizationModelingWhenshopmanagementishandledmanually,therearealargenumberofvariablesforthe

    personneltoconsiderinordertooptimizetheoperation.Thepersonmanagingtheshopis

    typicallyjusttryingtokeepeverythingmovingandhaslittletimeorabilitytodevelopand

    manageaplanmuchbeyondthecurrentturn.Thelargertheshop,themoredifficultthisisto

    coordinateandthemoreinefficienciesthatsneakin.

    RADCONsapproachincreasesshopcapacityinsteadofjustmanagingtaskswithinthe

    shop. SinceCAPShasinformationabouttheshopsuchasprocessingtimesforeachcharge,

    equipmentavailability,

    manpower,

    as

    well

    as

    productivity

    targets,

    aplan

    can

    be

    developed

    and

    implementedthatnotonlykeepseverythingmovingforthecurrentturnbutreducesdelay

    time,shortensprocessingtime,decreasesworkinprocessinventoryandincreasesshop

    capacity.

    ShopOptimizationPlanFirstanoptimizedShopPlanisgenerated.Thesoftwareusestheheating,coolingand

    stackingmodeloutputstodeterminethemostefficientuseofresources.Theresourcewiththe

    leastcapacityisdeterminedfromthecurrentinventoryandequipmentinformationmaintained

    inCAPS.Protectingthisbottleneckresourcebecomestheprimaryfocusoftheplan.

    TheShopPlanisdevelopedusingMixedIntegerLinearProgramming(MILP)whichisa

    techniquefordeterminingthemostefficientmethodforallocatingresourceswhilestillmeeting

    allofthesystemconstraintsorrules. InLPanobjectivefunctionisdevelopedandtheLPsolver

    isaskedtoeitherminimizeormaximizethefunction.Theresultisasolution that minimizesdelay

    timeofthebottleneckresourcewhichwillgivethemaximumshopthroughput.

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    TheoperatorviewstheplanthroughaGantt

    chartviewofthebaseoverviewscreen.This

    chartshowsablendofthecurrentstatusofthe

    shopalongwiththeplannedfuturearrangement

    ofchargesandequipment.Theoperatoris

    allowedtomodifytheplantoaccommodate

    trials,maintenance,orotherspecificrequests.Figure1:ShopPlanningOverviewScreen

    OperationsPlanningNowthataplanisdeveloped,itneedstobeimplemented.TheOperationsPlanningmodule

    directsresourceactivitiesaccordingtotheShopPlan,suchasrealtimetaskassignmentstothe

    crane,floor,andfurnaceoperators.Withtheadditionofacrane(locator),navigational

    functionalityisavailablethatmaximizesefficiencyof

    cranemovement.

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    ThesoftwareworkslikeanavigationsystemforBAF

    operation,planningthesequenceofactivitiesforthe

    operators,cranes,andtransfercarstoavoidconflictsthat

    woulddelaythecompletionofatask.

    For

    example,

    in

    a

    shop

    with

    multiple

    cranes,

    the

    crane

    activitymustbecoordinatedtomakesurethattheydonot

    interferewitheachotherandmoreimportantlythattheywork

    Figure2:CraneTaskList

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    togethertocompletethehighprioritytasks.Eachcranehasatasklistofitemstobecompleted

    thatisdynamicallyupdatedbasedontaskcompletionandothereventsintheshop.Ifoneofthe

    cranesistakenoutofservicethenthetasksareredistributed.

    Figure

    4:

    Operator

    Receiving

    Message

    on

    PDA

    SimilarinformationisprovidedtotheflooroperatorviaahandheldPortableDigital

    Assistant(PDA).Sincetheinformationisavailabletotheoperatorwhiletheyareontheshop

    floor,theyareabletospendmoretimecompletingassignedtasksinsteadofconstantly

    checkingbacktothecontrolroomtodecideonthenexttask.Also,sincethecomputeris

    determiningthetasksequencetheoperatorwillbeassignedthepropertasksrequiredtomeet

    theShop

    Plan

    requirements.

    ThePDAisalsousedtocollectinformationrelatingtotheoperators

    activity.Coilsarescannedtoavoididentitymixupsandmanualtaskssuch

    asverifyingtanklevelsorsafetychecksareinputfromthelocationthatthe

    activityiscompletedinsteadofrecordedlater.Thisallowseachoperatortobe

    moreproductivewhichcanreducethenumberofoperatorsnecessarytorun

    theshop.

    Figure5:OperatorScanningCo

    Identification

    Layer3optimization,withRADCONsShopOptimizationandOperations

    Planningmodules,providesthehighestutilizationofhumanandequipment

    assetsintheBAF. LikealloftheCAPSmodels,ShopOptimizationincreases

    throughput,decreases

    operating

    costs,

    and

    improves

    product

    quality.

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