Simulation-Based Analysis of Integrated Production and Jobsite Logistics in Mechanized Tunneling

The planning of jobsite layouts and logistics management has a major impact on the performance of tunnel construction projects that use tunnel-boring machines (TBMs). Frequently, projects do not reach the highest possible production performance due to undersized logistics processes or insufficient storage capacities. In this paper, a flexible simulation framework for analyzing interactions between production and logistics processes on tunneling jobsites is presented. A formal ontology for logistic elements on a tunneling jobsite is developed using SysML formalism. Based on this formulation, single systems elements combined in process chains are analyzed and their influence on production processes is evaluated. The formal system description identifies process dependencies and resource constraints of the system elements. These formulations are implemented in configurable simulation components for construction equipment, storage spaces, and production materials. Using these components, a jobsite simulation model can be created. The jobsite layout is represented at a high level of detail, with geometric shapes used for estimating storage capacities and movement durations. This approach uses discrete event and system dynamic simulation and applies probability functions to inputs representing production process times. Dynamic simulation can reveal unknown impacts of logistical processes on the continuous advance processes of the TBM. A simulation model for TBMs is integrated to determine the demand for supply processes. A fast and effective comparison between different jobsite layouts and logistics strategies is possible due to flexible components. By analyzing the workload of construction equipment, robust and efficient setups can be developed. A case study illustrates the usefulness of the simulation framework by comparing the performance of three different jobsite setups for a tunneling project.


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  • Accession Number: 01612014
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ASCE
  • Created Date: Aug 17 2016 3:33PM