Project scheduling under resource constraints : a study for the applicability and performance of a new heuristic

Pao Yue-kong Library Electronic Theses Database

Project scheduling under resource constraints : a study for the applicability and performance of a new heuristic

 

Author: Wan, Chak-keung
Title: Project scheduling under resource constraints : a study for the applicability and performance of a new heuristic
Degree: M.Sc.
Year: 1996
Subject: Project management
Production planning
Production scheduling
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: Multi-disciplinary Studies
Pages: viii, 102 leaves : ill. ; 30 cm
Language: English
InnoPac Record: http://library.polyu.edu.hk/record=b1236984
URI: http://theses.lib.polyu.edu.hk/handle/200/3546
Abstract: Aside from the commonly used priority dispatching Heuristics of most algorithms for multiresource-constrained project scheduling problems, Bell and Han (1991) has suggested a simple heuristic that employs resource conflict repairing technique and Hill Climbing improvement approach to provide a reasonably good feasible schedule without violating the resource constraints. In the light of this new approach, a comparative study concerning the applicability and also the ability of finding the minimal project duration of the heuristic is carried out. A commonly used Project Management software " Microsoft Project 4.0" is used to facilitate the study. A comparison is made between the feasible solutions obtained from the Automatic Resource-leveling Function of Microsoft Project 4.0 and from following the Bell & Han's heuristic procedure. In order to show the different ability of the approaches, 6 tested networks are so designed with different characteristics by following the scheme of the experiment of Cooper(1976) . The tested networks are described by four parameters related to the size, structure of the project graph, the project time properties and resource properties. The first parameter used is "order strength," by which the structure of the project graph is specified. The second parameter used is "density" which is a function to the free float of activities. The third parameter used is "Resource factor" which is defined as the ratio of the average number of different kinds of resources used per job to the number of total type of resource available. The last parameter used is "resource strength" which concerns the quantity required by activities in the project relates to the amount of available resource . The sizes of the sample projects are relatively small due to the limitation of this research , and are varying from 10 and 15 activities only. A modification of the Heuristic of Bell & Han(1991) is suggested in attempting to tackle the shortcoming of the Hill-climbing technique used by Bell & Han. The comparison among the results obtained from the three different methods for the 6 testing networks shows that MS Project 4.0 can provide better feasible schedule for network with Resource Strength closed to 2.0. However, Bell & Han'S and the Modified Heuristic perform better for flexible networks with smaller Order Strength, and all three methods perform similarly for networks that are tightly constrained in resource.

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