To read this content please select one of the options below:

Design of robust layout for unequal area dynamic facility layout problems with flexible bays structure

Irappa Basappa Hunagund (Department of Mechanical Engineering, Government Engineering College Ramanagar, Ramanagar, India)
V. Madhusudanan Pillai (Department of Mechanical Engineering, National Institute of Technology Calicut, Calicut, India)
Ujjani Nagegowda Kempaiah (Department of Mechanical Engineering, University Visvesvaraya College of Engineering, Bangalore, India)

Journal of Facilities Management

ISSN: 1472-5967

Article publication date: 1 September 2020

Issue publication date: 29 September 2020




The purpose of this paper is to develop a mathematical model for the design of robust layout for unequal area-dynamic facility layout problem with flexible bay structure (UA-DFLP with FBS) and test the suitability of generated robust layout in a dynamic environment.


This research adopts formulation of a mathematical model for generating a single layout for unequal area facility layout problems with flexible bay structure under dynamic environment. The formulated model for the robust layout formation is solved by developing a simulated annealing algorithm. The proposed robust approach model for UA-DFLP with FBS is validated by conducting numerical experiments on standard UA-DFLPs reported in the literature. The suitability of the generated robust layout in a dynamic environment is tested with total penalty cost criteria.


The proposed model has given a better solution for some UA-DFLPs with FBS in comparison with the adaptive approach’s solution reported in the literature. The total penalty cost is within the specified limit given in the literature, for most of the layouts generated for UA-DFLPs with FBS. In the proposed model, there is no rearrangement of facilities in various periods of planning horizon and thus no disruptions in operations.

Research limitations/implications

The present work has limitations that when the area and aspect ratio of the facilities are required to change from one period to another, then it is not possible to make application of the robust approach-based formulation to the dynamic environment facility layout problems.

Practical implications

Rearrangement of facilities in adaptive approach disrupts the operations whereas in the proposed approach no disruption of production. The FBS approach is more suitable for layout planning where proper aisle structure is required. The solution of the proposed approach helps to create a proper aisle structure in the detailed layout plan. Thus, easy interaction of the material handling equipment, men and materials is possible.


This paper proposes a mathematical formulation for the design of robust layout for UA-FLPs with FBS in a dynamic environment and an efficient simulated annealing algorithm as its solution procedure. The proposed robust approach generates a single layout for the entire planning horizon. This approach is more useful for facilities which are difficult/sensitive to relocate in various periods of the planning horizon.



The authors would like to thank anonymous reviewer for the critical suggestions and observations. The suggestions offered by the reviewer have been immensely helpful on revising the various aspects of the manuscript and improving the quality of the manuscript.


Hunagund, I.B., Pillai, V.M. and Kempaiah, U.N. (2020), "Design of robust layout for unequal area dynamic facility layout problems with flexible bays structure", Journal of Facilities Management, Vol. 18 No. 4, pp. 361-392.



Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles