Quality & Productivity

Economic Impact of the Foreign Farm Laborer on U.S. Local Communities

An issue that has been greatly debated over the past decade is the impact of immigrant farm workers on the U.S. and local economies. Concerns that increases in immigrant farm workers may lower domestic wages are of interest to U.S. policy makers, however farm owners argue that insufficient labor supply has negatively affected farmland and lowered profits. The H-2A temporary agricultural program is a way for agricultural employers who anticipate a shortage of domestic workers to bring nonimmigrant foreign workers to the U.S. to perform agricultural labor or services of a temporary or seasonal nature. The objective of this study was to compare the benefits received by U.S. citizens under welfare programs to the income earned by a typical H-2A worker. The study also analyzed the impact of the H-2A program on local employment and economy. 

Automated Generation of AVI Routines for Surface Mounted Assembly Systems

The objective of this proposal is the development of tools to significantly shorten the time required to develop inspection algorithms for new components. In particular, we propose to develop the methodology for the automatic generation of inspection routines of new SMD components introduced to a PCB assembly line.

Bucket Brigades at TRW Occupant Restraints Plant, Chihuahua, Mexico

Arizona State University and TRW are currently working together in an innovative production system which aims to minimize the impact of labor turnover and absenteeism to assembly line throughput. The new production system is based on a one-piece flow, pull type production method that utilizes dynamic work allocation and operator replacement techniques at a passenger airbag assembly line of the TRW Chihuahua OR plant.

Development of an Integrated Environment for SMD Technology Assembly

This report documents the activities (broadly classifiable into research and educational activities) performed under NSF grants DMI-9502897 and DMI-9996183: Development of an Integrated Environment for SMD Technology Assembly.

Development of Planning Tools for the Supply Chain of Fresh Produce

The US market for fresh agricultural products has become an important source of revenue and growth for the food supply chain. This market accounts for nearly a quarter of all food expenditures in the US, and has an annual estimated consumption of over a $100 Billion in fruits and vegetables related products (Epperson and Estes, 1999).

Efficiency Analysis of the America West Customer Call Center

The goal of this project is to analyze the America West CS Call Center, by documenting procedures, gathering data and identify areas of opportunity.

Efficiency Measures for Inbound Logistics Performance

This research looked for appropriate measures of performance for the inbound transportation system of a manufacturing plant, in order to assess, monitor and improve the performance of their transportation logistics. Along with the efficiency metrics, other tools were developed, such as control charts and action plans to continuously monitor the performance of the inbound transportation systems.

Efficient Aircraft Boarding Strategies

One of the main factors affecting turn time for a commercial airline is passenger boarding time. Reducing boarding time, however, is difficult since it directly involves the passengers. By assigning passengers to groups (or zones) the airline obtains some level of control on the boarding process.

Integration of the North American Electronics Industry Supply Chain

EAL was involved in a research project that focuses on trying to bring improvements to the North American electronics industry by creating a more integrated supply chain. The goal of this study is to assess the viability of an opportunity for the electronics industry to reduce travel time, travel costs and in-transit inventory for certain components by eliminating the large travel distance necessary for packaging in Asia.

JVML: Design and Realization of a Virtual Manufacturing Laboratory Using JINI™

The Jini Virtual Manufacturing Laboratory created using Jini™ technologies forms part of MANET, also known as Manufacturing Network. JMVL’s conceptual structure allows users to distribute and expand its software and hardware.

Logistics Capacity Study of the Guaymas – Tucson Corridor

The Port of Guaymas, Sonora is located in the northwest of the Pacific coast of Mexico, 258 miles from the nearest border crossing point in Nogales, Arizona. The Port has unused capacity which could allow for fast and efficient vessel turnaround since the port does not experience the congestion of larger, regularly scheduled ports of call.

Logistics Strategies for Mexican-Based Plants Serving U.S. Markets Under Current Transportation Restrictions

This paper studies distribution strategies for a company operating under different levels of the North American Free Trade Agreement’s (NAFTA) implementation.

Optimal Designs for Serial Assembly Lines Under Labor Turnover

In a simulation study performed by Hutchinson (1995), it was found that in a serial assembly line with five operators and a moderate monthly turnover rate of 6%, throughput was reduced by 12.6% and that, with a 12% turnover rate, the reduction in yield was as high as 16.3%.

Strategic Design of a Logistics Platform for Fresh Produce

In recent years, the consumption of agricultural products worldwide and its international commerce has increased significantly. This represents new opportunities to farmers on the major markets and in other countries as well due to seasonality.

US-Mexico Binational Aerospace Workshop for Supplier Development

The first US-Mexico Binational Aerospace Workshop for Supplier Development was organized by Arizona State University (ASU) in partnership with Monterrey Tech as part of the activities of the USAID-sponsored graduate program on logistics of the aerospace industry.

US-Mexico Partnership on Education and Technology Transfer for the Aerospace Industry

As part of the Global Engineering activities of the Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering the TIES program with Monterrey Tech to offered a dual MS in Industrial Engineering with a focus on the Aerospace industry.

US-Mexico Virtual Laboratory for Electronics Manufacturing

This proposal has a dual objective: the development of automated tools for the continuous quality improvement of electronic assembly processes and the establishment of the basis for the formation of a network of US and Mexican universities working on research and educational projects in the area of electronics manufacturing.

Vector Classification of SMD Images

Automated visual inspection of surface mounted devices (SMD) requires the correct classification of an image as either “component present” or “component absent”.

 Work Allocation Strategies for Serial Assembly Lines under High Labor Turnover

Labor turnover can be very detrimental to the performance of traditional serial assembly lines. It has been shown that high turnover rates can reduce annual production throughput in serial assembly lines by more than 16% when these lines operate under a balanced work allocation strategy.