Supply chain scheduling using distributed parallel simulation

Juha‐Miikka Nurmilaakso (Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Helsinki University of Technology, Finland)

Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management

ISSN: 1741-038X

Publication date: 1 December 2004


In a supply chain, an order often connects a number of companies whose schedules affect the success of the order. This paper proposes distributed supply chain scheduling in the agent architecture instead of centralised supply chain scheduling. The companies communicate through their agents that share only the information relevant to the supply chain scheduling. This scheduling relies on distributed parallel forward simulation in which simple messages are exchanged between the agents periodically. According to these messages, each agent simulates the production orders of its company and receives and sends messages about the purchase and sale orders. This synchronises the simulation of the agent with the simulations of the other agents. Distributed simulation reduces the competitor's opportunities to manipulate the company's performance through the schedules of its suppliers and customers. Although distributed simulation does not optimise the schedules, it is capable of finding feasible schedules.



Nurmilaakso, J. (2004), "Supply chain scheduling using distributed parallel simulation", Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, Vol. 15 No. 8, pp. 756-770.

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