The scheduling of metal to different casters in a casthouse is a complicated problem, attempting to find the balance between pot-line, crucible carrier, furnace and casting machine capacity. in this paper, a description will be given of a casthouse modelling system designed to test different scenarios for casthouse design and operation. Using discrete-event simulation, the casthouse model incorporates variable arrival times of metal carriers, crucible movements, caster operation and furnace conditions. Each part of the system is individually modelled and synchronised using a series of signals or semaphores. in addition, an easy to operate user interface allows for the modification of key parameters, and analysis of model output. Results from the model will be presented for a case study, which highlights the effect different parameters have on overall casthouse performance. The case study uses past production data from a casthouse to validate the model outputs, with the aim to perform a sensitivity analysis on the overall system. Along with metal preparation times and caster strip-down/setup, the temperature evolution within the furnaces is one key parameter in determining casthouse performance.
Field of Research
080110 Simulation and Modelling 091005 Manufacturing Management 010406 Stochastic Analysis and Modelling