Material Handling System Design: A Case-Study in Bosch Rexroth Japan

University essay from Högskolan i Jönköping/JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion; Högskolan i Jönköping/JTH, Industriell organisation och produktion


In today’s fierce competitive global markets, customers are demanding adjustable lot sizes, shorter lead times, higher quality and flexibility; in short, they want it all. In order to stay competitive in the market, companies need to attain both customer satisfaction and cost reduction in production operations. Material Handling Systems (MHS) is the place to accomplish this goal, since they have a direct impact on production. Therefore, the aim of this study was to design an in-house MHS that could be efficient for the production it serves.

With this intention, a case-study has been conducted in Bosch Rexroth Japan. During the study, the information gathered through various sources; interviews, observations and measurements. Further, the gathered data is evaluated according to main pillars of the theoretical framework, which includes design principles and physical elements, information and software, human and management.

By analyzing the findings from literature review and empirical study, first problems and challenges related to MHSs are identified. Thereafter, possible features that the system should posses are elicited and a design is built out of the selected features.

To conclude, the results show that the success is not solely depending on system’s physical attributes; on the contrary, it is more related to rapid and accurate information sharing within the system. Another vital element is the interaction between system and the people, who are utilizing and operating the system. In general terms, the research took MHS design problems from one-dimensional equipment selection processes and enriches them by adding information sharing, human and management angles to design steps.

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