In contrast to capacity improvements, which must first target bottleneck resources, cycle time improvements can be made at any tool within the factory. However, cycle time reduction opportunities are usually best focused on the tools that contribute most heavily to overall cycle time. To determine these tools, use Factory Explorer®'s Cycle Time Contribution by Tool Group Chart, shown below for Factory Explorer®'s sample Aspen model (based on data from SEMATECH's set4 testbed dataset). These results were generated using both capacity analysis and simulation.
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Cycle Time Contribution by Tool Group Chart, Aspen model. This chart displays the tool groups that contribute most heavily to cycle time. Although it is not heavily loaded, tool group QLESS is responsible for nearly 20% of total cycle time for this product. Understanding and reducing this tool group's cycle time contribution could reap substantial benefits.
The Factory Explorer® Advantage
You could create the chart above using outputs from other simulation tools, but the necessary data is often buried in text-based output reports. You would have to copy and paste the data to Excel, create the chart manually, and worst of all - repeat the entire process after each simulation run. With Factory Explorer®, it's an automated output chart that's available at the touch of a button. Because we use Factory Explorer® every day, we are among its most demanding users. We solve problems and add capabilities - like automated output charts - ahead of customer needs. Once you start using Factory Explorer®, you'll appreciate this innovative drive.
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