Project Management Institute

Recovering from a crisis at Tinker Air Force Base

Project Management in Action

Showcase Project

Building 3001 at Tinker Air Force Base, showing damage from a 1984 fire.


Adedeji B. Badiru, Bob L. Foote, Larry Leemis, A. Ravindran school of Industrial Engineering University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma Larry Williams, Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Tinker Air Force Base (TAFB), located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, is one of the five overhaul bases in the Air Force Logistics Command. It is a prime Air Force rework facility for jet engine parts that support standard engines. The base has the responsibility for overhaul and repair of six types of jet engines, various aircraft and engine accessories, as well as worldwide management of selected Air Force military assets. The base is a major economic factor to the state of Oklahoma and a major strategic facility for national defense. Covering more than 5,000 acres, the base has nearly 25,000 military and civilian personnel. Its annual payroll of $676 million is important to the economy of the entire area. TAFB‘s mission, which includes worldwide support of B-52, B-1 and B-2 bombers as well as a host of other aircraft and missile types, is vital to the nation's defense.

The base dates back to 1941, when the need for a maintenance and repair depot was recognized and the land was made available by a group of local business and civic leaders. The base was named for Major General Clarence Tinker, of Pawhuska. Oklahoma. General Tinker was lost leading a bombing raid on Wake Island early in World War II. During the war and subsequent conflicts, Tinker Air Force Base has performed its logistics, maintenance and repair jobs with distinction. It was obviously a major concern when a devastating fire in November 1984 threatened to disrupt operations in the Propulsion (Engine) Division in the Directorate of Maintenance.

Project Background

The fire that necessitated the project occurred in TAFB Building 3001, the largest single building in Oklahoma. The building houses several key maintenance facilities. The base command quickly organized a team to plan, design, and implement an emergency reconstruction project. The base team was headed by Larry Williams, who was then Engineering and Planning Branch deputy chief, Propulsion Division, Directorate of Maintenance, for the base. The base team contracted with a team of faculty and students from the School of Industrial Engineering at the University of Oklahoma on the technical aspects of the reconstruction efforts. The University of Oklahoma team got the contract after some of the national consulting firms that submitted bids for the project claimed that the project could not be done within the required time limit. Some of the firms submitted bids running into hundreds of thousands of dollars. The University of Oklahoma team completed its tasks ahead of schedule at a fraction of the cost of other bids. The MAE (an engineering department) relocation team from Tinker Air Force Base was responsible for managing the overall project, while the University of Oklahoma (OU) team was responsible for the quantitative and computer analyses required by the project. The OU team assisted the transition to the reconstructed layout by developing a simulation program, designing the overhead conveyor system routings, laying out the plant, and making a routing analysis of the inter-shop part transfers.

The reconstruction project provided an opportunity to improve on the previous production facilities at TAFB. It resulted in a 50 percent decrease in material handling for long flow items, a 50 percent decrease in organizational transfers for long flow parts, a savings of 30,000 square feet of production floor space, a savings of $3.5 million from elimination of excess machinery, and a $1.8 million improvement per year in direct labor efficiency. The successful completion of the project has gained international recognition through several publications and by winning fourth place in the international 1988 Franz Edelman Award competition, presented by The Institute of Management Sciences (TIMS).

This article discusses the project management techniques applied during the reconstruction project. Other aspects of the project have been documented in the literature [2] [3] [4] [5].

The Need For Project Management Approach

Project management is the process of managing, allocating, and timing resources to achieve the desired goals of a project in an efficient and expedient manner. The objectives that constitute the desired goal are normally a combination of time, cost, and performance requirements. A project can be simple or very complex. The reconstruction project at Tinker Air Force Base was an example of a very complex project that required carefully designed interfaces between multiple federal, state, and private organizations. The project provided an opportunity to integrate project management theories and concepts with real-world practices.


The project management steps shown in Figure 1 illustrate the process used for the reconstruction project. The life cycle of the project consisted of several chronological steps: problem identification, problem definition, specifications, project formulation, organizing, resource allocation, scheduling, tracking, reporting, control, and project termination. The steps were performed in accordance with the specified project goal. It was necessary to have concurrent implementation of the steps for the several groups involved in the project. Some of the steps are explained below.

Project Definition

The purpose of the project was clarified in this step. A mission statement and a statement of work (SOW) were the major outputs at this point. The mission statement specified that the base must be back in full and satisfactory operation within the shortest possible time. A condensed sample of the statement of work is presented in Appendix A.


Project planning was required to determine how to initiate and execute the objectives of the project. Both bottom-up and top-down planning strategies were used. The requirements for supervision and delegation of authority were considered in the planning phase. The critical path method (CPM) was used as the analytical tool for executing the project plan. Gantt chart schedules were developed after performing the CPM calculations. A project responsibility matrix (PRM) was developed to indicate where and how each team fitted into the overall project plan. Each team then developed its own expanded responsibility chart to describe and track individual assignments. The PRM linked responsibilities, tasks, and priorities by team and sequence of activities. Cells within the matrix were filled with relationship codes that indicated who was responsible for what. The responsibility chart clearly communicated and focused attention on critical tasks.


Figure 1. Project Management Steps for the Reconstruction Project.


Fire damage to the interior of Building 3001.

Resource Allocation

Project goals and objectives were accomplished through the allocation of resources to functional requirements. Resources for this project were defined in terms of manpower, equipment, and skill requirements. Because of the crucial nature of the project, resource allocation was not a major problem. However, whatever resources were allocated had to be effectively and efficiently utilized.


The various tasks in the project had to be carefully orchestrated. Task precedence relationships were reviewed in terms of technical, procedural, and resource restrictions. Time lines were developed for specific team schedules. Bottleneck tasks were identified and given special attention.

Project Tracking and Reporting

This step involved evaluating whether or not project results conform to plans and specifications. Frequent project review meetings were conducted to appraise the progress of the project. Reports were generated at the appropriate levels of detail and in simplified forms to facilitate quick management review and decisions. Areas of potential conflicts were identified and contingency plans were developed for such areas. When conflicts developed, control actions were taken promptly.

Project Phase-Out

The phase-out of a project is as important as the initiation of the project. To prevent the project from dragging on needlessly, clear goals and objectives were established for each measurable and obtainable element in the SOW. However, provisions were made for follow-up projects that would further improve the results of the project. These follow-up or spin-off projects were to be managed as totally separate projects but with proper input-output relationships between the sequence of projects. For example, one follow-up project involved transferring the simulation program developed by the OU team to some other Air Force bases involved in similar maintenance operations.

A sample of the statement of work for the project is presented in Appendix A. Larry Williams was the major author of the statement of work. The details provided by the statement of work is indicative of the complexity and criticality of the reconstruction project.


The base reconstruction team was organized quickly with the charter to get the maintenance facility back in production status within the minimum amount of time. Using the matrix structure, personnel from various departments within TAFB were assigned to the project team. The team included both civilian and military personnel. Figure 2 presents an abbreviated portion of the overall matrix structure. The major groups within the overall project team were:

  • Tinker Task Force management group, headed by a colonel;
  • Tinker Project Management group, headed by Larry Williams;
  • Tinker Facilities Department personnel;
  • Construction subcontractors;
  • University of Oklahoma research group.

The project team was given the authority to implement whatever strategies were necessary to accomplish the reconstruction without disrupting maintenance operations spared by the fire. A temporary project office was created for the project team at the base. During the most critical planning stages, the team was sequestered in the office away from all interruptions. Despite all the reconstruction and relocation activities going on, regular maintenance operations continued to the extent possible and met mission requirements. A control center was established to manage the day-to-day tasks of facility relocation.


Very careful planning was needed to achieve the reconstruction goals. Machines had to be relocated while new shop layouts were developed. Relocation efforts began on August 1, 1985. The first shops to be reclaimed were the disassembly and cleaning functions. Shops and Modular Repair Centers (MRCs) were time-phased to match existing constraints and minimize impact on production requirements. The constraints included space availability, technical service support, machine availability, and impact on production. In order to determine the impact on limited resources and to ensure a smooth continuous return to the north end of the building, a CPM chart was established for each individual MRC and the overall project. In order to properly define the required activities, the project was viewed as a component of a larger system. The hierarchy of the system components followed the sequence of system, program, project, task, and activity. These components are explained below.

System: A project system consists of interrelated elements organized for the purpose of achieving a common goal. The elements are expected to work synergistically together to generate a unified output that is greater than the sum of the individual outputs of the components. For the reconstruction project, the U.S. national defense system was defined as the parent system.

Program: Program commonly denotes very large and prolonged undertakings. It is a term that is typically applied to project endeavors that span several years. Programs are usually associated with particular systems. In this case study, Tinker Air Force Base's function of maintaining Air Force jet engines was defined as a program within the national defense system.

Project: Project is the term generally applied to time-phased efforts of smaller scope and duration than programs. Programs are sometimes viewed as consisting of a set of projects. The reconstruction project was viewed as one project within ongoing TAFB programs.

Tinker Air Force Base Simulation Program

The simulation model, called Tinker Integrated Planning and Simulation (TIPS), was written using the discrete event orientation in the SLAM simulation package. It contained approximately 1750 lines of FORTRAN code. The simulation entities in the model were WCDs (Work Control Documents) flowing through one particular MRC (Modular Repair Center). TIPS incorporated three shifts, machine down-time, worker absenteeism, transfer to other MRC operations (e.g., painting, plating, and heat treat) and stackers. The stackers were used to model work in process storage when machine queue lengths were exceeded. Machines had queues with limited capacity. Stackers were modeled as having infinite storage capacity. The simulation model was capable of handling 70,000 concurrent entities (WCDs) in an MRC. Despite this large model capacity, three of the large repair centers at Tinker Air Force Base had to be broken into smaller part family groups before they could be run. The model was run on VAX machines both at Tinker Air Force Base and the Engineering Computing Network at the University of Oklahoma.

The data used to determine the rate of flow of WCDs through each MRC was obtained from Tinker Air Force Base. The data for each MRC came in two sets; the 1985 fiscal year data and the 2000 engine equivalents. The 2000 engine equivalents data referenced a scenario when the production facility would run at full capacity. This represented the estimated repair workload for the year 2000. Both data sets contained a list of the WCDs for the MRC and the operation sequence, the corresponding machine processing time, the corresponding standard labor time, the UPA (units per assembly) number for each WCD, and a vector containing the relative frequencies of each WCD. In addition, the planned size of each MRC (e.g., number of machines of each type) and data needed to create from-to matrix (for inter- and intra-MRC part transfers) were contained in the data. The OU project team transformed all the data provided by Tinker into a custom format that allowed SLAM to execute the event model.

Two features of the TIPS model made it particularly unique. First. the model was so large that it used the SLAM package at its maximum configuration to run a single MRC. The project team had to consult with Pritsker & Associates (the developers of SLAM) to find out how SLAM‘s limits could be extended in the source code. Innovative programming tricks had to be developed to make the model work. Second, the simulation model integrated both physical (machines) and skill (labor) resources in a single model that supported a bottleneck analysis, space analysis, and overhead conveyor routing analysis. The model was developed for managers and engineers. Two hands-on-training sessions were held at Tinker to introduce the model to Tinker managers and engineers.

Modeling of Downtime

Machine breakdown is a factor that affects the flow time and throughput for an MRC. After each machine completes processing on apart, the potential for a breakdown occurs with probability that depended on the machine. The time to repair a machine was assumed to be exponentially distributed since only the mean repair time was available as input data. The distributions and parameters used in the simulation were based on estimates by Tinker Air Force Base personnel.


Reconstruction of Building 3001 in progress.

Interarrival and Service Time Distribution

Since no data was available on the interarrival time distribution, deterministic interarrival and service times were used based on the annual volume of the particular WCD being considered.

Labor Utilization

The modeling of a WCD being serviced on a machine was difficult because both a machine and an operator were required to service a part. Each WCD required an operator and a machine for durations determined from data before completing processing on that machine. In addition, sick leave, training leave, and vacations for machine operators were modeled.

The simulation model provided a utilization histogram giving the percent of time that a particular machine was busy. Because only one shift was worked in the fiscal 85 models, machines were idle during the second and third shifts. As a result, the statistics for idle machines (O percent utilization) might be distorted. To overcome the distortion, calculation adjustment was performed to achieve a desired 95 percent machine availability at any given time during the shift.

Simulation run times varied depending on the size of the MRC. For example, MRC GX 2000 engine equivalents data took about one hour to run on IBM 3081. The run times on a VAX 11/780 minicomputer were generally eight times longer than the mainframe run times. In one specific case, MRC CC2, one of the smallest families in MRC C, took 1.5 minutes to run on the IBM and 7.8 minutes on the VAX. The CC2 shop contained a maximum of five WCDs and could handle up to 63 different processes. It had annual workload of about 821 parts. By comparison, MRC GX handled about 329 WCD types and had up to 72 different organic processes. Its annual repair volume was over 100,000 parts.

Simulation Output

A warm-up period of 13 weeks (one quarter) was used for each simulation run. Statistics on MRCs were collected starting with the 14th week. Simulation outputs were printed in 13-week time intervals to match regular production runs at the base. The output consisted of two parts: the standard SLAM summary report and a custom printout generated by a FORTRAN output subroutine developed by the project team. The custom output helped in presenting the SLAM output in a format and level of detail suitable for prompt managerial review and decision making. Supplementary FORTRAN programs were written to generate certain input data for the simulation model. A bottleneck program was used to set a minimum number of machines available for each process. Other programs were written to use some of the SLAM outputs to generate reports that were of specific interest to management. For example, the COPT (Conveyor Optimization) program used some of the SLAM outputs to generate an improved design for the overhead conveyor system using a shortest-route model.

The TIPS model has served many useful purposes at Tinker Air Force Base. It has been used to determine the number of machines to place in each MRC and to determine process capability for the repair facility. It has facilitated the review of the process plans for the overhaul of parts. The model has been the core of an integrated system of management decision aids combining technical expertise and project management approaches to achieve reconstruction goals.


Figure 2. Abbreviated Matrix Organizational Structure

Table 1. Example of Activity Requirements Format for CPM Planning


Task: A task is a functional element of a project. A project consists of a contiguous collection of tasks that all contribute to the overall project goal. For the reconstruction project, some of the responsibilities assigned to specific groups within the project team were defined as tasks. For example, one of the tasks of the University of Oklahoma research team was to develop a computer simulation program.

Activity: An activity is defined as a single element of a project. A collection of activities constitutes a task. One activity within the programming task was the collection of input data for simulation.

The above hierarchical definitions were necessary because throughout the project each function was evaluated in terms of how it would affect other functions at a higher or lower level of the overall project structure. The definitions also helped in developing accurate work breakdown structures (WBS) and clear statements of work (SOW). Activities for each MRC required resources and consumed calendar time, all of which had to be planned, scheduled, and controlled. Each activity had to have an estimate of time required for completion in labor-hours as well as clock hours and days. The level of detail required for each output and format of the output were agreed upon by all the groups involved. Initial time and resource elements were obtained from each branch by May 31, 1985. An abbreviated sample of the requirements format is shown in Table 1.


Figure 3. Sample of MRC CPM Network

Figure 3 presents a portion of the MRC CPM planning guide. The sample network shows the complexity of the project. The larger nodes represent tasks of a bigger scope than activities. The task codes are written as T (for task) plus a task number. The smaller nodes represent activities of a smaller scope than tasks. The activity codes are written as A (for activity) plus an activity number. Expanded and separate CPM networks were drawn for some of the tasks in the sample network. For example, the task node representing the University of Oklahoma project team had its own expanded CPM network. With this network strategy, it was not necessary to draw one huge cluttered network for the overall project. TimeLine project management software was used to analyze the CPM networks. The descriptions of a selected set of the task and activity codes in the network are presented in Figure 3.

To facilitate the project efforts, new organizational and shop layout strategies were developed. The strategies included:

  • Maintenance facility was initially sized for one-shift operation. Additional specific processes and equipment were added later for two-shift operation to meet pre-fire process requirements.
  • Modular repair centers were established for parts with similar geometries, part families, and process requirements.
  • Machine placements were clustered to reduce material handling and establish work centers.
  • General-purpose functions such as heat treat, painting, and plating remained unrelocated due to the nature of those processes.
  • Each MRC was provided with all equipment and processes that could be economically justified. This significantly reduced MRC-to-MRC traffic and material flow on the conveyor system.
  • The MRC became the single point of production responsibility. Every work control document (WCD) was assigned to a specific MRC.
  • The “central station” concept of an independent group for checking components prior to delivery to the serviceable stacker was discontinued.
  • Known and anticipated productivity enhancements were incorporated into individual MRCs.

The CPM chart helped in establishing the sequence of when each MRC would be created and relocated. However, allowances were made for continuous changes to the initial plan as detailed planning was completed and actual construction proceeded, An abridged example of a relocation plan for an MRC is shown in Table 2. Table 3 shows an example of machine relocation plan within an MRC.

With the information contained in Tables 3 and 4 and other similar memos and notices, it was possible to keep project team members informed of the requirements and due dates. Thus, few scheduling conflicts were experienced. A feedback loop was created whereby each person or team could identify and promptly report potential or real problems.

Table 2. Abridged Example of MRC Relocation Plan


Table 3. Example of Machine Relocation Plan


Figure 4. Implementation of Triple C Model for the Reconstruction Project


Planning, communication, cooperation, and coordination formed the basis for the relocation to the damaged portion of Building 3001. Equipment recovery, site preparation, construction, and relocation were carefully coordinated to avoid conflicting schedules. While the military process of command, control, and communication played a role in the initial response to the fire, the project team relied more on the Triple C model of project management [1]. Triple C suggests planning and implementing complex projects under a structural approach to communication, cooperation, and coordination. The principle facilitates a systematic approach to the planning, organizing, scheduling, and controlling of a project. The three components of the Triple C model are discussed below. Figure 4 presents a pictorial representation of the model.


Proper communication contributes significantly to better performance in a project environment. The communication function of project management involves making everyone aware of the project requirements and progress. Those who would be affected by the project directly or indirectly, as participants or beneficiaries, were kept informed on the following:

  • The scope of the project
  • The need for the project
  • The organization of the project
  • The expected impact of the project
  • The individual in charge of the project
  • The time frame for implementing the project
  • The level of personnel participation required

Communication was kept open throughout the reconstruction project. In addition to in-house communication, external sources were also consulted as appropriate.


The cooperation of the project personnel was explicitly sought. Merely being informed of the project requirements was not enough assurance of full cooperation. The personnel were convinced of the merits and the urgency of the project. Factors that are typically of concern in cooperation problems were addressed by the project coordinators. These factors included resource requirements, relocation requirements, revised priorities, and so on. Each project team member was made aware of the following:

  • The cooperative efforts needed
  • The implication of lack of cooperation
  • The criticality of cooperation to the project
  • The time frame involved for personnel participation
  • The organizational impact of cooperation


After successfully initiating the communication and cooperation functions, the efforts of the project team were directed at coordination. Coordination facilitates harmonious organization of project efforts. The development of a responsibility chart was very helpful at this stage. A responsibility chart showing individuals, teams, or functional departments and assigned tasks and responsibilities was developed. The responsibility chart helped to avoid overlooking critical communication requirements, commitments, and critical interrelationships. It helped to clearly specify:

  • Who was to do what
  • Who was responsible for which results
  • What personnel interfaces were involved
  • Who was to inform whom of what
  • Whose approval was needed for what
  • What support was needed from whom for what functions and when that support was needed
  • What were the critical tasks now


An important follow-on component of the overall reconstruction project was a training program conducted by the University of Oklahoma research team for Tinker Air Force Base personnel. The training was conducted over several weeks and it involved how to model individual shops and run the simulation programs developed for production planning.

The simulation model, called the Tinker Integrated Planning and Simulation (TIPS) model, was written using the discrete event orientation in SLAM II and it contains over 1750 lines of FORTRAN code (see [2] [3] [4] for further details on TIPS).

A separate training program was conducted for managers. For Tinker technical staff, the training covered the technical aspects of the simulation model. The training for managers covered how to use the outputs of the simulation to make decisions. For this purpose, customized and simplified output formats were incorporated into the simulation model.

After the two training programs, the project of the University of Oklahoma team was essentially transferred to the Tinker staff. The team, however, continued to provide technical support. Modified or customized versions of the simulation model were later transferred to several DOD activities with functions similar to those of Tinker Air Force Base.

Technical reports were provided to over 50 private firms interested in the concept and application of modeling and simulation as project management tools for industrial operations. Several colleges and universities are now using the TAFB reconstruction project as a training case study.


The integrated project management approach employed on the reconstruction project was the major factor in the quick recovery from the disastrous fire. The project team started the project in January 1985, approved the organizational concept in February 1985, developed the industrial process code concept and started data collection in late February. The first detailed shop layout was required to be completed in July 1985. Data required to meet material and scheduling lead times was needed by June 15, 1985. All simulation runs had to be completed by September 1985 to finalize shop resource allocations and to allow for design lead times. The outputs of the simulation model were needed to allocate personnel, machines, and floor space to the various shops. All of these requirements were met on time and within budget.

The role played by project management on this reconstruction project is a good example that should benefit other organizations that face crisis management problems.


Section 1: Scope

This section describes the scope of the project.

  1. Contractor is to provide all labor, equipment, materials, facilities, and transportation necessary to evaluate the alternate production facility layouts for jet engine overhaul provided by the government. Evaluation and simulation will determine the most economical shop arrangement in terms of machine utilization, material handling cost, and floor space occupation, that provides sufficient overhaul capability to meet projected requirements. This effort will require the services of simulation modeling, mechanized material handling (MMHS), and storage devices analysis. The analysis will include all production shops in Building B3001 assigned to or directly associated with engine overhaul. Specific shop description will be provided by OC-ALC/MAE. Evaluation of the demand and routing of the mechanized material handling system for shop-to-shop material transfer as well as the size, configuration, and location of the mini-stackers for individual shop material staging and queuing is an integral part of the project. This effort is essential to a timely and cost effective relocation of OC-ALC/MAE production facilities into the fire damaged portion of Building 3001. Site visits will be scheduled as needed to ensure contractor understanding of the requirements and evaluate their recommendations.
  2. While this effort is directly related to recovering from the November 1984 fire at Tinker AFB, it will establish and provide an essential engineering capability for analysis, evaluation and development of current state-of-the-art theories or findings to overhaul requirements of OC-ALC/MA. This service will provide an essential capability that is not organically available at OC-ALC/MA.
    1. The model must reflect production flow and sequence of operations. Production data will be provided by OC-ALC/MAE for each work control document.
    2. Contractor will provide proposed report formats no later than 10 days after contract award for OC-ALC/MAE review and approval. Report formats will be divided into three areas:

      HEADER: Define purpose and application of report DATA DESCRIPTION: Display/define data elements presented
      DATA: Compiled/analyzed/processed raw data that provides specific information for management decisions.

      All reports will provide data by individual code elements. Data elements and report formats used in SLAM II simulation software will be the basis for all reports. Selected figures are attached to clarify requirements. Modifications may be required to meet OC-ALC/MAE terminology requirements.

Section II: Requirements

The deliverables required of the contractor include the application of industrial management expertise, analysis and evaluation, which should incorporate the application of standard industrial engineering techniques, such as facility modeling, simulation, operations research, queueing theory, and potential failure analysis. Specific requirements to be fulfilled are:

  1. Data Security: All production data must be secured from non-AFLC personnel and non-U.S. civilians. Actual capacity projections are considered sensitive, not classified, and sufficient security measures must be taken to ensure data protection, and upon completion of this project, all data in the contractor's possession must be destroyed or returned to the government. Certification of material destruction must be submitted to the contracting officer for verification.
  2. Training: Instruct TAFB personnel in the input, analysis, and operation of the capacity planning model and the analysis of mechanized material handling system (MMHS) sizing and routing simulation. A minimum of five MA personnel will require this training.
  3. Specific Contractor Reports and Analysis Required:
    1. Reports will reflect shop organizations
      1. Family groupings of machines/processes
      2. Individual Modular Repair Centers (MRCs)
      3. Individual machines/processes
      4. Total of all production shops
    2. Specific reports for the above areas will include but not limited to:

      (1) Output requirements by individual or nested customer order (control numbers) for variable time/production periods.

      (2) Process requirements by process code that details the total Bill of Material (BOM) by Work Control Document (WCD) for each control number for each shop area involved.

      (3) Projected operating costs in terms of personnel costs and equipment requirements based on proposed shop layouts, shop resources, and workload mixes.

      (4) Reports for individual shops or all shops for various workload projections.

      (5) Machinery dedication in terms of operating costs, floor space, and machine utilization, based on sequenced WCD flow and constraints specified by OC-ALC/MAE.

      (6) Capability and capacity of each shop, MRC and organization.

      (7) Utilization of individual or groups of machines

      (8) Using current operating costs, production outputs and space requirement from the combustion can and gearbox or TF30 assembly organizations as a baseline, provide accurate data projections for the following:

      (a) Queue time

      (b) Flow time and material handling cost within shop/MRC

      (c) Flow time and material handling cost between shops/MRCs

      (9) Recommendations for sequence and location of equipment within shops/MRCs to reduce operating costs.

    3. MMHS and Mini-Stacker Analysis: Using data from the verified simulation model, contractor will provide the following:

      (1) Economic analysis of planned routing of MMHS.

      (2) Recommended changes to minimize operating and construction costs.

      (3) Number and location of input-output elevators to minimize material handling costs, and other operating costs.

      (4) Identification of potential bottlenecks generated by surge situations and cost effective solutions to associated problems.

      (5) Accurate prediction of system volume in total and for individual shops for variable time frames.

      (6) Determination of whether or not the proposed government conveyor design will permit continuous material flow from any shop to any other shop. Contractor should recommend corrective actions needed to achieve this requirement.

      (7) Recommendation for optimum location, size, number of bins, size of bins, and degree of automation for mini-stackers to meet overall shop/MRC requirements.

      (8) Recommendation for queue sizes at the following points:

      (a) Input-output stations

      (b) Key machines

      (c) Mini-stackers

      (9) Development of operating procedures for mini-stackers.

    4. Software package, simulation, etc., must operate on VAX 11/780 series computers.

    Contractor will provide a working model of the facility with support documentation by June 15, 1985. MMHS recommendations are required by July 1, 1985.

Section III: Items to be Provided to Contractor

The following items will be provided to the contractor by the government.

  1. Process requirements data for each Work Control Document (WCD) on magnetic tape that will contain the following in a standard format:
    1. Part description data, WCD number, noun, size, MRC assignment, workload requirements by control number.
    2. Individual process requirements in production sequence: the type of process, standard labor, and process flow time.
  2. Equipment availability by process code and shop/MRC.
  3. Workload requirements.
  4. Proposed shop capability and capacity by process code.

Section IV: Duration

As identified in Section II, capacity reports are due June 15 and MMHS and mini-stacker recommendations are due July 1, 1985. Follow-on analysis and additional evaluation will be required throughout the period of relocation or approximately 12-24 months in total.


Bob Foote is a professor in the School of Industrial Engineering at the University of Oklahoma. He is a registered professional engineer in the state of Oklahoma. He received his BS and MA in mathematics, and his Ph.D. in industrial engineering from the University of Oklahoma. His research interests are in applied operations research, plant and production planning, inventory models/MRP, and quality control/assurance. He is a fellow of the Institute of Industrial Engineers.


Adedeji B. Badiru is an associate professor of industrial engineering at the University of Oklahoma. He is a registered professional engineer in the state of Oklahoma. He received his BS degree in industrial engineering, MS in mathematics and MS in industrial engineering from Tennessee Technological University. He received his Ph.D. degree in industrial engineering from the University of Central Florida. He has published several papers and four books in the areas of project management and expert systems.


A. Ravindran is associate provost at the University of Oklahoma. He is also a professor of industrial engineering. He received his BS in electrical engineering from Birla Institute of Technology and Science in India. He received his MS and Ph.D. degrees in industrial engineering from the University of California at Berkeley. His research interests are in operations research and multicriteria optimization. He is a fellow of the Institute of Industrial Engineers.


Larry Leemis is an associate professor in the School of Industrial Engineering at the University of Oklahoma. He received his BS and MS degrees in mathematics, and his Ph.D. in operations research from Purdue University. His research interests are in reliability and simulation.


Larry Williams is presently the staff consultant for organizational assessment and improvement for military and civilian organizations at Tinker Air Force Base. He was formerly the chief of the Facilities and Equipment Branch at the base. He received his BS degree in mathematics and physics from East Central State University and his MS degree in industrial engineering from the University of Oklahoma.

1. Badiru, Adedeji B. 1987. Communication, Cooperation, Coordination: The Triple C of Project Management. In Proceedings of 1987 IIE Spring Conference, pp. 401-404, Washington, DC (May).

2. Foote, B.; A. Ravindran; A.B. Badiru; L. Leemis; and L. Williams. 1988. Simulation and Network Analysis Pay Off in Conveyor System Design. Industrial Engineering, vol. 20, no. 6 (June), pp. 48-53.

3. Leemis, L., A.B. Badiru, B.L. Foote, and A. Ravindran. 1990. Job Shop Configuration Optimization at Tinker Air Force Base. Simulation, vol. 54, no. 6 (June), pp. 287-290.

4. Ravindran, A.; B.L. Foote; A.B. Badiru; L. Leemis; and L. Williams. 1989. An Application of Simulation and Network Analysis to Capacity Planning and Material Handling Systems at Tinker Air Force Base. TIMSInterfaces, vol. 19, no. 1 (Jan. -Feb.), pp. 102-115.

5. Ravindran, A.; B.L. Foote; A.B. Badiru; and L. Leemis. 1988. Mechanized Material Handling Systems Design & Routing. Computers & Industrial Engineering, vol. 14, no. 3, pp. 251-270.

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