Research Advances in the Application of FlexSim: A Perspective on Machine Reliability, Availability, and Maintainability Optimization

Ruwaida Aliyu, Ainul Akmar Mokhtar


This paper discusses recent research advancements in the use of FlexSim for machine reliability, availability, and maintainability (RAM) optimization of manufacturing companies in discrete event simulations (DESs). An extensive collection of relevant articles was gathered from the literature and reviewed to provide useful guidelines for companies in boosting their overall profits via FlexSim simulation. The main areas in which FlexSim has been used are spare parts inventory management, queue scheduling policy, task allocation, overall equipment effectiveness (OEE), process capability (PC), maintenance planning, and scheduling. The use of FlexSim has been very successful in these areas for efficient system reliability, availability, and maintainability optimization. Based on the findings in this work, FlexSim provides the basics for estimating the primary performance metrics of machines, such as mean time to failure (MTTF), equipment down time (EDT), and system availability values (Asys) for RAM analysis. The details derived from the study will allow management to determine a system’s RAM needs. However, the current FlexSim DES in manufacturing industries is based on individual RAM analysis, with no studies on establishing the relationship among the RAM components. The goal of this research was to highlight the possible ways to establish relationships in RAM studies for higher performance on equipment and quicker decisions when it comes to a choice of maintenance applications, especially when using the FlexSim software for DESs. Hence, improving the efficiency of the simulation results for both practical and academic applications. The study also provides tables and data that are useful for FlexSim-related simulations on RAM in industrial processing.


Keywords: discrete event simulation, FlexSim, RAM analysis.



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