Trade-off balancing between maximum and total completion times for no-wait flow shop production

Honghan Ye, Wei Li, Barrie R. Nault

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


We propose a trade-off balancing (TOB) heuristic in a no-wait flow shop to minimise the weighted sum of maximum completion time ((Formula presented.)) and total completion time (TCT) based on machine idle times. We introduce a factorisation scheme to construct the initial sequence based on current and future idle times at the operational level. In addition, we propose a novel estimation method to establish the mathematical relationship between the objectives min((Formula presented.)) and min(TCT) at the production line level. To evaluate the performance of the TOB heuristic, computational experiments are conducted on the classic Taillard's benchmark and one-year historical data from University of Kentucky HealthCare (UKHC). The computational results show that minimisations of (Formula presented.) and TCT yield inconsistent scheduling sequences, and these two sequences are relatively uncorrelated. We also show that our TOB heuristic performs better than the best existing heuristics with the same computational complexity and generates stable performances in balancing trade-offs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3235-3251
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Production Research
Issue number11
StatePublished - Jun 2 2020

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019, © 2019 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.


  • maximum completion time
  • no-wait flow shop
  • scheduling
  • total completion time
  • trade-off balancing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Strategy and Management
  • Management Science and Operations Research
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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