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Distributed modelling and simulation of supply chains

: Mertins, K.; Rabe, M.; Jäkel, F.-W.


International journal of computer integrated manufacturing 18 (2005), No.5, pp.342-349
ISSN: 0951-192X
ISSN: 1362-3052
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IPK ()

The behaviour of supply chains, especially those in which several enterprises are involved, is often difficult to predict. For the analysis of such systems, which cannot be evaluated by analytical models, discrete event simulation is an adequate technology. The competence of the local engineers about the single chain elements has to be incorporated into the simulation models. This can be done best by establishing local models, representing the local section of the supply chain. Up to now, integrating such local models into one complete model was time consuming and error prone. Even more critical, local maintenance of partial models was inhibited. A new approach solves this problem, exploiting the advantages of distributed simulation. Furthermore, this approach provides encapsulation, if supply chain partners do not wish to publish details of their node to other partners. The interfacing description is based on the High Level Architecture (HLA) and generates Extensible Markup Language (XML) files, which provide a specification of each supply chain node and its interfaces.