WPI Pilot

The curriculum materials were piloted at WPI in OIE 3400-Production System Design.  This course serves as an introductory course in process design for industrial and other engineering majors as well as management majors. Before Fall 2002 the course was offered as a lecture without any laboratory exercise. But in Fall 2002 the traditional course topics like line balancing and material management were linked to lean concepts of a value, flow, demand pull and perfection. We developed a set of laboratory exercises where by student experimented and improved  the production process of Time Wise.

The physical simulation helped students learn the concepts of flow, demand pull, capacity, inventory, and quality improvement.   All the labs had the same theme where by students were asked to come up with solutions for continuous improvement.  The data generated (lead time, work in progress, number of errors etc) from the physical simulation were given to students to use it as a platform to analyze the problem at hand and come with solutions for improving the process. This was the first edition offered to students in A-Term in 2002 and some minor changes were made in C-Term 2003 as we learned from our experience and student suggestions.

The laboratory exercise are based on a physical simulation of clock assembly. The physical simulation, called TimeWise, was developed by Time Wise Management Systems. This simulation is used by Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) programs in several states to teach lean principles to employees at small-to medium manufactures. Below is a brief description of each of the labs is provided.

  • Lab 1: Traditional Push System
    This lab concentrates on traditional push manufacturing system.  View lab...
  • Lab 2: 7-Step Methodology
    This lab introduces students to 7-step problem solving methodology.  View lab...
  • Lab 3: Flow & Line Balancing
    This lab focuses on improving flow and line balancing.  View lab...

 

  • Lab 4:  Pull & Perfection
    This lab develops a pull with an aim to eliminate waste in the system.  View lab...
  • Lab 5: Intro to Supply Chain Management
    This lab introduces students to fundamentals of supply chain management.  View lab...
  • Lab 6: Mass Customization
    This lab concentrates on mass customization.  View lab...
 
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