Synchronized manufacturing as in OPT: from practice to theory

Boaz Ronen*, Martin K. Starr

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


Synchronized manufacturing as in the OPT system (Optimized Production Technology, by Creative Output Inc.) is a relatively new concept for production management. This paper analyses the nine OPT rules, the OPT concepts and OPT philosophy in order to establish an analytical, theoretical basis for the OPT system. The analysis is based on systems theory concepts, mathematical programming theory and techniques, as well as queuing theory, the Pareto rule, and the Japanese production experience. It is shown that the OPT rules reflect substantial integration of well established MS/OR techniques with the whole OPT philosophy. The paper analyzes the OPT classification of VAT plants and the Drum-Buffer-Rope concept used in OPT. Our analysis makes a clear distinction between BIG OPT (the management system) and its subsystem SMALL OPT (the scheduler). The paper suggests that while the BIG OPT concepts may be applied in all types of processes, job shop processes and very complex assembly lines are the most suitable ones for the SMALL OPT scheduling system. The paper then shows the management by constraints methodology as a natural enhancement of the OPT concepts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)585-600
Number of pages16
JournalComputers and Industrial Engineering
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1990


Dive into the research topics of 'Synchronized manufacturing as in OPT: from practice to theory'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this