Excellence in Manufacturing and Operations Control

Manufacturing, i.e. operations of plants and facilities, is a key function of all industrial enterprises. Plants and facilities are at the origin of creation of value for customers. Commercial success hinges on production of products of quality, delivered on time at a good price. Process industries utilize an extraordinary variety of process units based on a multitude of different technologies, of different sizes; they may be run continuously or discontinuously (by batch); they may employ a few people, or hundreds, thousands of people. But all have in common the transformation of raw materials into finished goods by a chemical, physical or biological route; all of them have needed an initial investment – a CAPEX (capital expenditure) – and running them needs an OPEX (operating costs). Most of the industrial assets use a significant amount of energy and create waste; their impact on the environment has for a long time tarnished their image among the society in many countries. Industrial catastrophes (SEVESO, BHOPAL, AZF) have impacted their reputations. Operations management has improved in recent decades with the introduction of the supply chain concept, and the understanding of the notion of flows (financial, information, goods). World Class Manufacturing (WCM) introduced in the vein of TOYOTISM encompasses a lot of techniques for operations improvement, cost reduction, problem solving and more generally several tools for better ...

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