Assembly sequence optimization is a difficult combinatorial optimization problem having to simultaneously satisfy various feasibility constraints and optimization criteria. Applications of evolutionary algorithms have shown a lot of promise in terms of lower computational cost and time. But there remain challenges like achieving global optimum in least number of iterations with fast convergence speed, robustness/consistency in finding global optimum, etc. With the above challenges in mind, this study aims to propose an improved flower pollination algorithm (FPA) and hybrid genetic algorithm (GA)-FPA.
In view of slower convergence rate and more computational time required by the previous discrete FPA, this paper presents an improved hybrid FPA with different representation scheme, initial population generation strategy and modifications in local and global pollination rules. Different optimization objectives are considered like direction changes, tool changes, assembly stability, base component location and feasibility. The parameter settings of hybrid GA-FPA are also discussed.
The results, when compared with previous discrete FPA and GA, memetic algorithm (MA), harmony search and improved FPA (IFPA), the proposed hybrid GA-FPA gives promising results with respect to higher global best fitness and higher average fitness, faster convergence (especially from the previously developed variant of FPA) and most importantly improved robustness/consistency in generating global optimum solutions.
It is anticipated that using the proposed approach, assembly sequence planning can be accomplished efficiently and consistently with reduced lead time for process planning, making it cost-effective for industrial applications.
Different representation schemes, initial population generation strategy and modifications in local and global pollination rules are introduced in the IFPA. Moreover, hybridization with GA is proposed to improve convergence speed and robustness/consistency in finding globally optimal solutions.
Mishra, A. and Deb, S. (2019), "An improved hybrid flower pollination algorithm for assembly sequence optimization", Assembly Automation, Vol. 39 No. 1, pp. 165-185. https://doi.org/10.1108/AA-09-2017-112
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