The Need

A $2B aerospace systems and controls manufacturer desired new, larger production space that would help fulfill their high backlog of orders, and they proceeded with a plan to move operations across town. As part of the move, they would need to relocate 240 machines to the new space.

When moving and purchasing new equipment in the past, they received equipment that did not reflect original specifications, and they were met with schedule delays in the certification process. Therefore, one of their concerns was the ability to maintain their on-time delivery rates when moving their equipment.

The Solution

Mortenson partnered with the manufacturer’s team to study the equipment, processes, past causes of delays and rework. Our team utilized proven tools, such as an equipment matrix, energy analysis, and virtual reality flow planning. We created a holistic approach that integrated the equipment very early into the design process of the new space and embedded it into the project plan. This included planning for commissioning of the equipment, OEM certifications and sustainable operations. By optimizing their equipment, we ensured each machine was quickly ready for restart/sustainable operations. 

Woodward Drake Rendering

A Closer Look: Utilizing Virtual Reality to Optimize Flow in Manufacturing

While planning for equipment layout and optimizing flow, Mortenson walked the company's leaders and end users through the space virtually, using virtual reality. In doing so, those who were not accustomed to reading 2D drawings could better visualize the space and make adjustments (such as the space in between walkways or equipment) before the equipment was moved in.

The Result

The meticulously planned equipment move reduced downtime by 20% and saved over $3 million in wages by keeping employees producing product instead of idle. In addition, the manufacturer’s new production space optimized their flow of goods, boosted productivity and accommodated future growth.

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