Cellular manufacturing

Cellular manufacturing occurs when production equipment is grouped together and used for the sequential production of a set of parts that have similar characteristics. This concept is used in a lean manufacturing operation, as part of the effort to strip waste from the production process. The following are characteristics of cellular manufacturing:

  • Machines within a cell are grouped close together, so that unfinished parts can be walked from one machine to the next.
  • Employees may operate more than one machine within the production cell.
  • Parts processed through the cell have similar characteristics, so that machine setups are minimized.
  • There are likely to be a number of production cells within a manufacturing process.

By using cellular manufacturing, a business can benefit from greatly reduced inventory levels and higher product quality.