Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Legacy Department

Industrial Management


Fredendall, Lawrence D


Manufacturing systems are complex. They consist of many interrelated subsystems and elements. This study investigates the effect on performance due to the complexity resulting from system design, i.e. internal static manufacturing complexity. The quantitative measure, ISMC, consisting of eight measurable complexity elements is proposed. This new measure of complexity was then tested with another existing measure of internal static manufacturing complexity proposed by Frizelle and Woodcock (1995).
A large set of simulation experiments, each modeling a general batch-type manufacturing system, was employed to test the effects of the overall complexity measure, ISMC, and the eight individual elements on five measures of manufacturing performance. The experimental design included two levels for each of the eight static complexity elements and two levels for the environmental variable, due date tightness.
The results indicated that neither the proposed measure, ISMC, nor the prior Frizelle and Woodcock's measure demonstrate a practical level of predictive validity. Three of the eight individual components making up ISMC were correlated to manufacturing performance. These were the breadth of the product structures, the depth of the product structures, and the number of different end-products in a manufacturing system.