Development of a cell formation heuristic by considering realistic data using principal component analysis and Taguchi’s method


Mechanical Engineering Department, National Institute of Technology, Hamirpur, 177005, HP, India


Over the last four decades of research, numerous
cell formation algorithms have been developed and tested,
still this research remains of interest to this day. Appropriate
manufacturing cells formation is the first step in designing a
cellular manufacturing system. In cellular manufacturing,
consideration to manufacturing flexibility and productionrelated
data is vital for cell formation. The consideration to
this realistic data makes cell formation problemvery complex
and tedious. It leads to the invention and implementation of
highly advanced and complex cell formation methods. In this
paper an effort has been made to develop a simple and easy to
understand/implement manufacturing cell formation heuristic
procedure with considerations to the number of production
and manufacturing flexibility-related parameters. The heuristic
minimizes inter-cellular movement cost/time. Further,
the proposed heuristic is modified for the application of
principal component analysis and Taguchi’s method.
Numerical example is explained to illustrate the approach. A
refinement in the results is observed with adoption of principal
component analysis and Taguchi’s method.