The main idea of the project is to develop a scheduling network for knitting SMEs to improve their flexibility and co-operation. The individual nodes of the network are economically independent SMEs, each with a lean scheduling system with three hierarchical scheduling levels. The planning board of each scheduling system allows an optimised scheduling of each individual order to an individual machine. A communication structure allows the exchange of selected information of the scheduling nodes. In case of bottlenecks the planner will get additional information from the partners by the superior co-operating planning board. The communication within the individual scheduling systems will be done automatically via Internet or phone. Thus a network of co-operating SME will be created which enables the partners to share their production capacities. Several economically independent knitting SME together form a 'virtual enterprise' which can act as one virtual supplier for potential customers. This will lead to an inter-enterprise network and organisation, which improves the ability to work together and thus reducing the throughput time and time-to-market.
Funding SchemeEAW - Exploratory awards