Quantitative techniques of plant layout



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The purpose of this study is the development of quantitative techniques for the general plant layout problem, specifically for the development of the relative positions of a number of departments based upon a cross chart matrix that summarizes previous analysis of the materials handling between the department and which can include a correction for activity relationships between departments. Two methods are studied in detail. One of them is the statistical technique of sampling at random and analyzing the results. The sample size is determined either parametrically or nonparametrically. The results obtained are as good as the ones found previously in the literature. The other method studied is a variation of the dynamic programming technique. This method is referred to as an approximation in policy, space. The results obtained through the application of both methods will always be local minimum at least. Occasionally a global minimum will be obtained. Presently there is no way to distinguish one from the other, but a reference point may be found to use a guidepost in the solution of the problem.