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Title: A knowledge-based system for planning and scheduling ready mixed concrete
Authors: Lam, Yow T.
Issue Date: 1995
Publisher: © Yow Thim Lam
Abstract: The use of ready-mixed concrete primarily involves two parties, the supplier and the customer (who is usually a construction contractor), although others may be involved. Ready-mixed concrete is not only a product, it is also a service. This implies that the supply of ready-mixed concrete should satisfy the customers' needs in relation to both quality and supply. To satisfy quality requirements, ready-mixed concrete must contain suitable materials, and be produced under conditions of quality control by experienced staff using reliable equipment To meet the supply requirement, it must be delivered at the time and rate required. Based on the findings in several surveys and studies, the UK ready-mixed concrete industry appears to meet the quality requirement quite well. However, the service provided to the customers could be improved. In addition, the industry's efficiency is not satisfactory when compared to its counterparts in other European countries such as Germany. Due to the peculiar characteristics of the product, which has a "shelf life" of only a few hours, and the unpredictable nature of the operating environment, the planning and scheduling problems of the production and delivery activities are usually unstructured and complex. In practice, UK ready-mixed concrete companies rely on their shippers' personal experience or intuition to make their planning and scheduling decisions. This research explored the feasibility of using a knowledge-based decision support system for planning' and scheduling the production and delivery of ready-mixed concrete. A prototype called ISRMC has been successfully developed as a result of a study of the operations of concrete production and construction as well as the ready-mixed concrete production and delivery process and detailed collection of knowledge from various sources.
Description: A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University.
URI: https://dspace.lboro.ac.uk/2134/11138
Appears in Collections:PhD Theses (Civil and Building Engineering)

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