Centre d’innovació i Tecnologia BARCELONATECH

Modelling, simulation and analysis of a transport system that uses automated guided vehicles

A simulation study was carried out to assess the capacity of an internal transport network to respond to new needs associated with changes in a company’s production processes. The project was designed for Almirall, an international pharmaceutical company whose headquarters are in Barcelona.

Almirall’s transport network is comprised mainly of automated guided vehicles (AGVs). The simulation model was used to assess proposed improvements that would be required if the network’s transport capacity was no longer sufficient.

In the simulation study, a complete model of the production plant was developed to emulate the movementsof the vehicles and thetasks associated with logistic changes in production.

InLab FIB collaborated with Almirall in the past (1997-1998), when the company merged with Prodesfarma. At that time, InLab FIB’s task was to simulate the reception, dispatch and picking plant at San Andrés de la Barca. The aim was to test different designs and ensure that the plant was the right size to cope with the integrated management of over 700 product references resulting from the merger of these two major pharmaceutical companies.

Benefits for the client

  • Can be used to evaluate production logistics.
  • Reduces the risk of introducing a new logistic model.
  • Provides an experimental model of the production plant.

 

Technology

  • Visual Basic for Applications, real-time Arena simulator, Petri nets

 

Areas of expertise involved in the project

  • Modelling, simulation and optimization