The setup matrix for production optimization

A setup matrix is ​​a powerful tool for detailed optimization of production for recurring lots of similar or identical products. The challenge is to determine the transition times from one product to the next with sufficient precision and to provide the data for a planning system.

A setup matrix describes how long it takes to change over from one product to any other product in a machine, whereby a simplification is also possible with similar effort by analyzing product group by product group.

Modern PPS systems allow a setup matrix to be stored in the master data, which can then be used in the planning process. A setup matrix is ​​composed of setup processes measured in the past in real operation and can be visualized as follows, for example.

Image: Setup matrix with duration/number from one material number to another automatically determines the setup matrices, including the prior elimination of outliers due to possible incorrect entries by employees. The matrices are made available at an API endpoint for further use in planning systems.

An automated and therefore permanently up-to-date setup matrix based on real setup times generates advantages for companies in two areas.

Setup matrix to optimize the setup sequence

A setup matrix can be used to optimize sequence planning by planning products with short conversion times on one machine one after the other. This usually requires a dynamic adjustment of lot sizes at the same time so that customer requirements are actually covered. The ideal sequence optimization, especially with a broad product portfolio and across several machines, is therefore a complex optimization problem that is regularly unthinkable without the use of a PPS system. can support this process by digitally providing an up-to-date setup matrix.

A form of representation of the optimal setup sequence for a given – and ideally stable – production program is the setup wheel. This can be linked to the key figure EPI, which indicates how long it takes to run through the setup wheel.

Setup matrix for precise production planning

Production planning is a forecast of future equipment occupancy. How the product and plant-specific OEE improves production planning has been described in another article. In addition, it should be explained that a precisely specified setup time also brings an advantage in production. In this way, employees can be informed of the remaining setup time on an Andon board, in order to be able to compare this with the remaining effort based on the experience of the employees and thus be able to reach the target time.

Production planning with precise setup times is of additional importance in companies where setup is frequent or the order lead time to the next scheduling slot is very long. In these cases, imprecise setup values ​​create deviations between planning and reality, which manifest themselves at least in a constant need for adjustment of the planning and can propagate to delayed customer delivery.

If you are interested in exchanging ideas on the subject of data-based production optimization, please do not hesitate to contact us.