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EMSIG - Introduction

A TOOL FOR MODELLING STRAIN OF MANUAL WORK IN MANUFACTURING SYSTEMS


Through the automation and mechanisation of transportation and production the hard manual work has been more and more reduced. However, hard manual work is still necessary. This fact will be outlined by the following reasons:
  • high flexibility of humans,
  • creativity of humans and
  • the limit of effective mechanisation and automation.
Simulation tools support the high resolution modelling of technical systems and its control. In this field of application, workers are represented in the model often very simply and insufficiently . The worker is just modelled like a resource or a parameter of a technical device. This kind of worker description is sufficient for the modelling of highly automatized production and transportation systems. But this approach is hardly applicable for the modelling of systems with a high portion of manual work. For those systems we need a model which also considers the strain of workers. Hereby the task of defining an abstraction level for describing single working operation needs to be addressed. The abstraction level has to be chosen so that single working operations can be appropriately and sufficiently described within the model. For describing manual work which will then be integrated in the simulation model it is necessary to acquire additional input data. Furthermore the simulation results have to be prepared in a way usable for a planner, a specialist for manpower studies and/or a specialist for information science.

Simulation models with detailed worker description support the user in evaluating a manufacturing system in terms of ergonomic and economic aspects in the planning process. The future strain of workers after a planned reconstruction of a factory can be observed.

Of course one could have developed a special simulation tool. But we created a separate module as an extension to different existing simulation languages.


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