Performance Approximation and Design of Pick-and-Pass Order Picking Systems
37 Pages Posted: 10 Dec 2007
Date Written: March 2007, 12
In this paper, we discuss an approximation method based on G/G/m queuing network modeling using Whitt’s (1983) queuing network analyzer to analyze pick-and-pass order picking systems. The objective of this approximation method is to provide an instrument for obtaining rapid performance estimates (such as order lead time and station utilization) of the order picking system. The pick-and-pass system is decomposed into conveyor pieces and pick stations. Conveyor pieces have a constant processing time, whereas the service times at a pick station depend on the number of order lines in the order to be picked at the station, the storage policy at the station, and the working methods. Our approximation method appears to be sufficiently accurate for practical purposes. It can be used to rapidly evaluate the effects of the storage methods in pick stations, the number of order pickers at stations, the size of pick stations, the arrival process of customer orders, and the impact of batching and splitting orders on system performance.
Keywords: pick-and-pass, order picking, warehousing, queuing network, simulation
JEL Classification: M11, R4, M, O32, C61
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