Industrial and Management Systems Engineering


Date of this Version



A thesis submitted to the Faculty of the Graduate College at the University of Nebraska in partial fulfillment of requirements for the Degree of Master of Science in Industrial and Management Systems Engineering, Lincoln, Nebraska, July 2011.

Copyright (2011) by Sarah M. Asio.


The application of traditional approaches to the design of efficient facilities can be tedious and time consuming when uncertainty and a number of constraints exist. Queuing models and mathematical programming techniques are not able to capture the complex interaction between resources, the environment and space constraints for dynamic stochastic processes. In the following study discrete event simulation is applied to the facility planning process for a grain delivery terminal. The discrete event simulation approach has been applied to studies such as capacity planning and facility layout for a gasoline station and evaluating the resource requirements for a manufacturing facility. To the best of my knowledge, no case study for the use of the discrete event simulation tool to evaluate a grain delivery terminal facility’s requirements as a whole is available. The following study will develop an approach tailored to a grain delivery terminal with fundamental concepts that can be applied to any other type of facility planning activity with an underlying stochastic process. A 2000ft by 1000ft facility was considered in the study and four scenarios evaluated with varying number of resources, queue capacities and mode of operation of human operators. A comparative assessment of the scenarios was done. The results showed the relative change of performance in the grain delivery process as the resources were increased. The discrete event simulation tool developed in this study can be used in combination with the cost analysis of resources to determine the optimal design in the construction of grain delivery terminals.

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