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US Navy Speeds Deployment with Arena

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The Challenge

Predict the behavior and delivery rate of this complex system by calculating the interaction of the system’s components.

The Arena Solution

The Arena consulting team developed a baseline model with Arena, which was validated against actual shipboard operations. Other scenarios were then developed.
The results of each scenario were evaluated against the baseline to determine its impact on the landing craft loading time. Scenarios included alterations to the monorail track designs, elimination of conveyors, and replacement of the monorail trains and conveyors with forklift trucks. Each model allowed the government contractor or naval personnel to easily make changes to system parameters. They could also modify the number of forklifts and monorail trains in the system.
 

Results

With the help of Arena and the consulting team, the contractor analyzed the model results to determine that using forklifts alone to transport cargo to the landing craft slowed the loading rates to unacceptable levels. The results also revealed that, by eliminating some monorail track switches, maintenance costs would be reduced without impacting the loading rate. Further, it was determined that a lower number of monorail trains could load the landing craft as fast as the original design, due to less track congestion - again having a major impact on the cost of cargo - handling equipment.

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Background

A major government defense contractor was given the task of reducing the complexity of the cargo handling system for U.S. Navy LHA 1 Class vessels, while maintaining a high delivery rate. LHA 1 Class vessels are responsible for loading palletized cargo onto landing craft for deployment. Palletized cargo must be transferred rapidly from the lower decks of the ship to landing craft located in the ship’s well. Loading the specialized landing craft carried within the ship must happen quickly and efficiently when launched under combat conditions.