The Production Model lies at the heart of a Projective scheduling system. This model details the physical workings of the plant including operating rules, product routings, process times, materials and resource requirements. Constraints such as lot sizing, resource shift patterns, batch constraints, travel/transfer times, and setup considerations are captured in detailed knowledge tables.
The Production Model is validated against historical production data to ensure that the system accurately depicts the capabilities of the plant. This ensures that the resultant schedules are realistic at the shop-floor or process level.
The Production Model can be developed using one of several techniques, depending on what is most appropriate for the problem at hand. Methodologies available include:
- Discrete-event simulation modeling
- Constraint-based modeling
- Mathematical model formulation
In some cases, a discrete-event simulation model reflecting plant operations and constraints may be a secondary output of the development process. This model can be used in an offline capacity for what-if scenario analysis and process improvement projects.