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Assembly Line Balancing with Multiple Stations


  • G. M. Buxey

    (University of Bradford, England)


A case is stated for extending the techniques of assembly line balancing to provide for the parallel operation of identical stations, where this leads to a reduction in idle time. The practical implications of operating with this type of system are discussed, both for the stations themselves and the line as a whole, with reference to various classifications of assembly line, and ways in which balancing can be made to fit into an overall strategy for production line design are touched upon. Two distinct types of computer program have been developed to enable multiple stations to become a recognised feature incorporated into "heuristic" line balancing, rather than an appendage to be applied ad hoc by industrial engineers when current techniques have proven inadequate. One approach is based on a more sophisticated version of the `positional weight' method while the other relies on the contrasting philosophy of the "random generation" method, and a comparison is made of their relative success in solving two assembly line problems, and their potential from an industrial viewpoint.

Suggested Citation

  • G. M. Buxey, 1974. "Assembly Line Balancing with Multiple Stations," Management Science, INFORMS, vol. 20(6), pages 1010-1021, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:inm:ormnsc:v:20:y:1974:i:6:p:1010-1021

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    Cited by:

    1. Boysen, Nils & Fliedner, Malte & Scholl, Armin, 2007. "A classification of assembly line balancing problems," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 183(2), pages 674-693, December.
    2. Scholl, Armin & Fliedner, Malte & Boysen, Nils, 2010. "Absalom: Balancing assembly lines with assignment restrictions," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 200(3), pages 688-701, February.
    3. McMullen, Patrick R. & Frazier, Gregory V., 1997. "A heuristic for solving mixed-model line balancing problems with stochastic task durations and parallel stations," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(3), pages 177-190, September.
    4. Hsiu-Hsueh Kao & Din-Horng Yeh & Yi-Hsien Wang, 2011. "Resource Constrained Assembly Line Balancing Problem Solved with Ranked Positional Weight Rule," Review of Economics & Finance, Better Advances Press, Canada, vol. 1, pages 71-80, November.
    5. Boysen, Nils & Fliedner, Malte, 2008. "A versatile algorithm for assembly line balancing," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 184(1), pages 39-56, January.
    6. Boysen, Nils & Fliedner, Malte & Scholl, Armin, 2008. "Assembly line balancing: Which model to use when," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 111(2), pages 509-528, February.
    7. Becker, Christian & Scholl, Armin, 2009. "Balancing assembly lines with variable parallel workplaces: Problem definition and effective solution procedure," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 199(2), pages 359-374, December.
    8. Battaïa, Olga & Dolgui, Alexandre, 2013. "A taxonomy of line balancing problems and their solutionapproaches," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 142(2), pages 259-277.
    9. Christian Becker & Armin Scholl, 2008. "Balancing assembly lines with variable parallel workplaces: Problem definition, model and exact solution procedure," Jena Research Papers in Business and Economics - Working and Discussion Papers (Expired!) 06/2008, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, School of Economics and Business Administration.
    10. Nigel Wadeson, 2013. "The Division of Labour under Uncertainty," Journal of Institutional and Theoretical Economics (JITE), Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen, vol. 169(2), pages 253-274, June.
    11. Becker, Christian & Scholl, Armin, 2006. "A survey on problems and methods in generalized assembly line balancing," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 168(3), pages 694-715, February.
    12. Yılmaz Delice & Emel Kızılkaya Aydoğan & Uğur Özcan & Mehmet Sıtkı İlkay, 2017. "A modified particle swarm optimization algorithm to mixed-model two-sided assembly line balancing," Journal of Intelligent Manufacturing, Springer, vol. 28(1), pages 23-36, January.
    13. Patrick McMullen & Gregory Frazier, 1999. "Using Simulation and Data Envelopment Analysis to Compare Assembly Line Balancing Solutions," Journal of Productivity Analysis, Springer, vol. 11(2), pages 149-168, April.

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