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Multiproduct production/inventory control under random demands

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2 Author(s)
Jin Qiu ; Fac. of Manage., McGill Univ., Montreal, Que., Canada ; R. Loulou

Studies the optimal production/inventory control policy for a single machine multiproduct production system. The machine produces to fill the end-product inventory stock and the demand is satisfied from the inventory when available; unsatisfied demand is backlogged until the product becomes available as the result of production. For each product, the demand follows a Poisson process and the unit processing time is known. When the machine switches production from one product to another, it incurs a set-up time and a set-up cost. The relevant costs include the set-up cost, a cost per unit time while the machine is running, and linear costs for inventory and backlogging. This problem is modeled as a semi-Markov decision process using the criterion of minimizing expected total cost with discounting over an infinite horizon. Procedures for computing near-optimal policies and their error bounds are developed. The error bound given by the authors' procedure is shown to be much tighter than the one given by the “norm-based” approach. Computational test results are presented to show the structure of the near-optimal policy and how its accuracy is affected by the system characteristics such as capacity utilization and set-up time

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Automatic Control  (Volume:40 ,  Issue: 2 )