A neuro-data envelopment analysis approach for optimization of uncorrelated multiple response problems with smaller the better type controllable factors


1 Department of industrial Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, Shahed University, Khalij Fars Highway, Tehran, P.O. BOX: 3319118651, Iran

2 Faculty of industrial engineering and systems, college of engineering, University of Tehran, Enghelab street, Tehran, P.O. BOX: 11155-4563, Iran


In this paper, a new method is proposed to optimize a multi-response optimization problem based on the Taguchi method for the processes where controllable factors are the smaller-the-better (STB)-type variables and the analyzer desires to find an optimal solution with smaller amount of controllable factors. In such processes, the overall output quality of the product should be maximized while the usage of the process inputs, the controllable factors, should be minimized. Since all possible combinations of factors’ levels, are not considered in the Taguchi method, the response values of the possible unpracticed treatments are estimated using the artificial neural network (ANN). The neural network is tuned by the central composite design (CCD) and the genetic algorithm (GA). Then data envelopment analysis (DEA) is applied for determining the efficiency of each treatment. Although the important issue for implementation of DEA is its philosophy, which is maximization of outputs versus minimization of inputs, this important issue has been neglected in previous similar studies in multi-response problems. Finally, the most efficient treatment is determined using the maximin weight model approach. The performance of the proposed method is verified in a plastic molding process. Moreover a sensitivity analysis has been done by an efficiency estimator neural network. The results show efficiency of the proposed approach.