Lexicographic bottleneck mixed-model assembly line balancing problem: An artificial bee colony approach
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Typically, total number of required workstations are minimised for a given cycle time (this problem is referred to as type-1), or cycle time is minimised for a given number of workstations (this problem is referred to as type-2) in traditional balancing of assembly lines. Lexicographic bottleneck assembly line balancing problem is a recently introduced problem which aims at obtaining a smooth workload distribution among workstations. This is achieved hierarchically. The workload of the most heavily loaded workstation is minimised, followed by the workload of the second most heavily loaded workstation, and so on. We address this problem on mixed-model lines, where more than one model of a product is produced in an intermixed sequence, and introduce Lexicographic Bottleneck Mixed-model Assembly Line Balancing Problem (LB-MALBP) for the first time in the literature. That is the major contribution of this paper. Main characteristics of the problem are exhibited through a numerical example and a new artificial bee colony algorithm, which consumes quite reasonable CPU time, is developed for the solution of the problem. Solution procedures of the algorithm are explored illustratively. The performance of the algorithm is assessed using derived well-known test problems in this domain and promising results are observed.