Supply chain optimization

Project overview

In today's fast-changing business environment, companies must constantly adapt their supply chain policies. E-business, advanced manufacturing and shorter product lifecycles increase the pressure on companies to optimize their supply chains. The greater availability of data, coupled with the increase in computer power, enables more aspects of their operations to be included in the analysis, and decisions need to be continuously updated as new information becomes available.

Production planningIndustry

Simulate and optimize the total value stream of a multi-echelon production chain. Requires the combination of inventory control and production processes. A particular challenge is to capture the great details of the operational processes: e.g. BOM, Push & Pull simultaneously, high variability.

IBM Research implemented a discrete-event simulation for the multi-echelon production network. Specific modules cover optimization of sub-problems. The simulation is used for optimization of the inventory parameters and for evaluation of optimized production parameters. The solution is web-based.

Enables the client to link tactical and strategic plans. The solution visualizes the impact of changing parameters on operational KPIs. Different what-if scenarios can be evaluated and compared e.g. to achieve a constantly high utilization of machines.

Meso v0.5.0 overview


  1. M. Parente, S. Vajjala, U. Schimpel
    Lean Execution Lessons Learned.
    APICS 2010 conference, Las Vegas, 2010.
  2. U. Schimpel, M. Parente, S. Vajjala
    Closing the gap between tactical ERP / MRP planning and operational execution in production industries – A simulation-based approach.
    EURO XXIV conference, presentation: Lisbon, 2010.