Self Organization Map Applied for the Design of Cell Formation in a Cellular Manufacturing System

Abstract

Cell Formation (CF) problem is considered as the most important issue in the cellular manufacturing system. CF deals with the creation of Machine Cells (MCs) and Part Families (PFs). Numerous methods were proposed in the literature for solving the CF problem. The current paper used a strategy based on one well known method, namely Self Organization Map (SOM). It's used for the products firstly, then rearranged them to form the families. Afterward SOM used for the machines, then rearranged them as cells. The output of the proposed method was compared with the best mentioned results in the literature. Five performance measures were used for the comparison and evaluation, these measures are Percent of Exceptional PE elements, Voids V, Intercellular moves IC, Grouping Efficiency GE and Machine Utilization MU. The results referred to the outperforms of the SOM based method, where it leads to reduce the number of IC moves. The PE values are equal or almost equivalent to the best known results, the MU results are approximately equivalent to the best recognized results and the GE results are better than the best identified results for the most problems.