Multi-objective optimisation methods for minimising total weighted tardiness, electricity consumption and electricity cost in job shops through scheduling

Liu, Ying (2014) Multi-objective optimisation methods for minimising total weighted tardiness, electricity consumption and electricity cost in job shops through scheduling. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Abstract

Manufacturing enterprises nowadays face the challenge of increasing energy prices and requirements to reduce their emissions. Most reported work on reducing manufacturing energy consumption focuses on the need to improve the efficiency of resources (machines). The potential for energy reducing at the system-level has been largely ignored. At this level, operational research methods can be employed as the energy saving approach. The advantage is clearly that the scheduling and planning approach can be applied across existing legacy systems and does not require a large investment. For the emission reduction purpose, some electricity usage control policies and tariffs (EPTs) have been promulgated by many governments. The Rolling Blackout policy in China is one of the typical EPTs, which means the government electricity will be cut off several days in every week for a specific manufacturing enterprise. The application of the Rolling Blackout policy results in increasing the manufacturing enterprises’ costs since they choose to start to use much more expensive private electricity to maintain their production. Therefore, this thesis develops operational research methods for the minimisation of electricity consumption and the electricity cost of job shop type of manufacturing systems. The job shop is selected as the research environment for the following reasons. From the academic perspective, energy consumption and energy cost reduction have not been well investigated in the multi-objective scheduling approaches to a typical job shop type of manufacturing system. Most of the current energy-conscious scheduling research is focused on single machine, parallel machine and flow shop environments. From the practical perspective, job shops are widely used in the manufacturing industry, especially in the small and medium enterprises (SMEs). Thus, the innovative electricity-conscious scheduling techniques delivered in this research can provide for plant managers a new way to achieve cost reduction.

In this thesis, mathematical models are proposed for two multi-objective job shop scheduling optimisation problems. One of the problems is a bi-objective problem with one objective to minimise the total electricity consumption and the other to minimise the total weighted tardiness (the ECT problem). The other problem is a tri-objective problem which considers reducing total electricity consumption, total electricity cost and total weighted tardiness in a job shop when the Rolling Blackout policy is applied (the EC2T problem).

Meta-heuristics are developed to approximate the Pareto front for ECT job shop scheduling problem including NSGA-II and a new Multi-objective Genetic Algorithm (GAEJP) based on the NSGA-II. A new heuristic is proposed to adjust scheduling plans when the Rolling Blackout policy is applied, and to help to understand how the policy will influence the performance of existing scheduling plans. NSGA-II is applied to solve the EC2T problem. Six scenarios have been proposed to prove the effectiveness of the aforementioned algorithms.

The performance of all the aforementioned heuristics have been tested on Fisher and Thompson 10×10, Lawrence 15×10, 20×10 and 15×15 job shop scenarios which were extended to incorporate electrical consumption profiles for the machine tools. Based on the tests and comparison experiments, it has been found that by applying NSGA-II, the total non-processing electricity consumption in a job shop can decrease considerably at the expense of the schedules’ performance on the total weighted tardiness objective when there are tight due dates for jobs. When the due dates become less tight, the sacrifice of the total weighted tardiness becomes much smaller. By comparing the Pareto fronts obtained by GAEJP and by NSGA-II, it can be observed that GAEJP is more effective in reducing the total non-processing electricity consumption than NSGA-II, while not necessarily sacrificing its performance on total weighted tardiness. Thus, the superiority of the GAEJP in solving the ECT problem has been demonstrated. The scheduling plan adjustment heuristic has been proved to be effective in reducing the total weighted tardiness when the Rolling Blackout policy is applied. Finally, NSGA-II is proved to be effective to generate compromised scheduling plans for using the private electricity. This can help to realise the trade-off between the total weighted tardiness and the total electricity cost. Finally, the effectiveness of GAJEP in reducing the total non-processing electricity consumption has been validated in a real-world job shop case.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Lohse, N.
Petrovic, S.
Gindy, N.
Keywords: Job shops, energy consumption, electric power consumption, production scheduling
Subjects: T Technology > TS Manufactures
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Engineering > Department of Mechanical, Materials and Manufacturing Engineering
Item ID: 14125
Depositing User: EP, Services
Date Deposited: 05 Dec 2014 13:11
Last Modified: 19 Sep 2016 18:58
URI: http://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/14125

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