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Maintenance optimisation of a series production system with intermediate buffers using a multi-agent FMDP

Yifan Zhou, Yiming Guo, Tian Ran Lin and Lin Ma

Reliability Engineering and System Safety, 2018, vol. 180, issue C, 39-48

Abstract: Maintenance decision making of a series production system with intermediate buffers is a research topic of practical significance. The Markov decision process (MDP) is an effective tool to undertake maintenance optimisation of a series production system with buffers due to its capacity in dealing with complex structure of maintenance strategies for such systems. However, the MDP has only been employed to analyse small systems due to the “curse of dimensionality†. A multi-agent factored Markov decision process (FMDP) is adopted in this study to remit the “curse of dimensionality†. The series production system considered in the study consists of several subsystems, and each subsystem is managed by an agent. A new method is developed to select maintenance actions in cooperation of different agents. An approximate linear programming algorithm is used to solve the FMDP model efficiently. The numerical study shows that the developed methods can deal with medium-scale series production systems with an insignificant small error in maintenance decision making.

Keywords: Maintenance optimisation; Intermediate buffers; Multi-agent; Factored Markov decision process (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2018
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