IN-TIME Real-Time Manufacturing Scheduling
IN-TIME is an innovative Product-Service System for the production storage and commercialisation of timber components along the supply chain. The IN-TIME solution comprises of several main component functions. An innovative approach to measuring pieces of timber is used which allows the automatic recording of each product as it leaves the cutting machine.
Depending on its size the timber is automatically packed as it leaves the production line, or is stored in a rotating storage drum for use at a later stage. The drum and packing are controlled by sophisticated sortation software which creates appropriate packs of timber and also maintains an even profile of materials in the drum, ensuring that the drum does not become unbalanced. This has enormous benefits in terms of less energy consumption, less noise, safer operating environment and increased plant throughput.
e-commerce architecture and production scheduling systems support the factory operation, making sure that the enhanced capabilities and flexibilities of the new equipment are used to their maximum advantage. The timber industry is characterised by an extended supply chain involving many nodes across a broad (international) geographic area.
IN-TIME provides an e-commerce framework within which customers and suppliers can interact, reducing ordering times from many days to as little as a few hours. Integrated with the e-commerce functionality is a production scheduling system which allows the supply chain to react in real-time to new customer orders. As soon as an order is placed, the corresponding production run is scheduled automatically. Thus the production operation is continuously reoptimised and the lead times on orders are dramatically reduced.
Keywords: real-time manufacturing scheduling - timber supply chain