Guest editorial

Journal of Quality in Maintenance Engineering

ISSN: 1355-2511

Article publication date: 28 March 2008



Artiba, A. (2008), "Guest editorial", Journal of Quality in Maintenance Engineering, Vol. 14 No. 1.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Guest editorial

Article Type: Guest editorial From: Journal of Quality in Maintenance Engineering, Volume 14, Issue 1.

About the Guest Editors Abdelhakim Artiba is based at ETS Engineering School, University of Quebec, Canada, and is Chairman of IESM Conferences.

This special issue of the Journal of Quality in Maintenance Engineering is devoted to the publication of six papers that were presented at the IESM’05 (International Conference on Industrial Engineering and Systems Management) held in Marrakech, Morocco, May 16-19, 2005. The Marrakech gathering was the eighth, with the first held in Mons, Belgium, May 1993, the second in Marrakech, Morocco, April 1995, the third in Lyon, France, October 1997, the fourth in Glasgow, UK, July 1999, the fifth in Quebec City, Canada, August 2001 and the seventh in Porto, Portugal, May 2003. These conferences are distinguished by a relatively small number of attendees (ranking between 120 and 150) who constitute a “special interest group” in the field of production planning and control. These conferences draw academics and industrial researchers from the fields of engineering, management, and computer science. The conferences are also distinguishable by the relatively small number of parallel sessions (at most three) and the time available for discussion at “round table” forums, at the plenary sessions, and at each session. The small number of participants, the relaxed pace of presentation, and the convivial atmosphere is conductive for fruitful exchange of ideas and cross-fertilization among areas of study.

The six papers included in this issue have gone through the usual rigorous review process, which explains the interval between the date of the conference and the date of publication. These papers cover different aspects of optimization, maintenance and quality.

The first paper entitled “Ant colonies for structure optimization in a failure prone series-parallel production system”, co-authored by Nabil Nahas, Mustapha Nourelfath and Daoud Aït-Kadi, proposes an “ant colony approach” in order to solve a new optimal design problem of a series-parallel manufacturing production line, where redundant machines and in-process buffers are included to achieve a greater production rate. In this paper, the optimal design problem is formulated as a combinatorial optimization one where the decision variables are buffers and types of machines, as well as the number of redundant machines.

The second paper entitled “Optimal inspection and preventive maintenance policy for systems with self-announcing and non-self-announcing failures”, co-authored by Anis Chelbi, Daoud Aït-Kadi and Houda Aloui, presents an optimal maintenance strategy for a randomly failing single unit system that alternates operating and idle periods. A mathematical model is developed to determine the inspection and preventive maintenance interval which maximizes the stationary availability of the system. Conditions of existence and uniqueness of an optimal strategy are also stated and numerical results are discussed.

The third paper entitled “Optimal disassembly sequencing strategy using constraint programming approach”, co-authored by Xavier Zwingmann, Daoud Aït-Kadi, Amadou Coulibaly and Bernard Mutel, proposes a methodology in order to find an optimal disassembly sequence minimizing the total cost. Constraint programming models are used to generate feasible subassemblies and transitions and the optimal disassembly sequence is generated either using a shortest path algorithm or a linear programming model.

The fourth paper entitled “Integrating Six-Sigma with other reliability improvement methods in equipment reliability and maintenance applications”, co-authored by Salman T. Al-Mishari and Saad Suliman, shows how the integration in the mechanical seals technology of Six Sigma methodology with other reliability and maintenance techniques like RCM (Reliability Centered Maintenance) addresses many RCM flaws and weaknesses and can produce results that are far more objective and dependable.

The fifth paper entitled “Incorporating the cost of quality in supply chain design”, co-authored by Amar Ramudhin, Chaher Alzaman and Akif A. Bulgak, presents a supply chain network design model that incorporates the Cost of Quality (COQ) along with other operation costs with the objective of reducing the total cost an organization incurs in day to day operations, in addition to exploring the impact of quality on the overall supply chain performance. The model presented in this paper allows decision makers to specify an acceptable quality level and configure the whole supply chain accordingly.

The sixth paper entitled “Process capability indices dedicated to bivariate non normal distributions”, co-authored by Philippe Castagliola and José-Victor Garcia Castellanos, proposes a new approach for the estimation of bivariate PCI’s (Process Capability Indices) in the case of non-normal bivariate distributions and a rectangular tolerance region. The computation of these PCI’s are based on the Johnson System of distributions/transformations.


The Guest Editors would like to thank the authors and the reviewers for their contribution to this special issue.

Abdelhakim Artiba, Philippe Castagliola

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