Objects are connected by drawing routing arrows between them. Routing arrows show all the possible routes a work item could take. Rules can be attached to these arrows to control the way work flows.
For each routing link that work items travel, a travel time can be specified.
All routes can have their travel times set to zero and SIMUL8 can be configured to do this automatically.
The following routing methods are available when selecting work items from an Activity:
Work is taken from the first item in the routing in list
Use to assemble together a number of work items from different objects into a group.
The Activity never pulls work from an object but will accept work pushed to it.
This is used to remove work items from a queue when they pass their shelf-life.
Pulls work from the queue which has the oldest work at its head.
Pulls work from the queue which has the youngest work at its head.
Pulls work from the feeding queue containing the most work.
If suitable work is available work is taken from each route in turn.
Used from Visual Logic to allow only one route to operate
Ideal function for when you don't want to give priority to any particular incoming route, you just want the Activity to randomly select work from any of its feeding objects.
As well as being able to control the way an Activity selects work it is also possible to control how it accepts this work.
If checked this Activity can have its current work interrupted by work of a higher priority arriving.
Batch together work items so that a minimum batch size, but not more than the maximum batch size, is reached.
Batch by Type
Tells the Activity to only accept work items which have a certain value in one of their labels.
Wait Until Exit Clear
The Activity should not attempt to draw work in until its exit is able to accept work.
Visual Logic can also be used to add more complex and unique selection rules.
The following rules are available when controlling where work is sent to from an Activity, Start Point or conveyor.
Work is circulated through the destinations in the list. That is the first work item will go to the first destination in the list, the second work item to the second,...., the Nth work item to the Nth destination on the list. The Nth+1 work item with go to the first destination etc. etc.
Work is distributed randomly with equal chance of being sent to each of the routes.
Distributes work to the routes in the percentages you specify.
SIMUL8 always try to send work to the first destination in the list, if this is blocked then it will try the second etc.
The value in a label on a work item controls where it goes. For example if the label value is 3 it will go to the third destination in the list, if the value if 5 it will go to the fifth destination.
This method sends Work Items to the queue which is shortest.
Looks up the Jobs Matrix, a table of routings and timings to determine which route should be used.
Activities normally try to push work out when it is complete. This rules means it will not try to push work out but will wait until another object pulls the work.
Ignore Blocked Routes
If the desired route is blocked then the same rule will be used again to find another route. Switching "Preference Only" off means that once a route has been chosen for the work item leaving the Activity it will wait until that route becomes available.
The jobs matrix is a table of information that controls complex routings and timings. It is used if an Activity will feed work out to different destinations depending of the type of work. Job Matrix routing is ideal for Job Shops.
The Jobs Matrix also lets you specify different cycle and change over times for each type of work at each Activity. This timing can also be changed depending on what stage in the cycle the work is at.
This feature makes it very easy to simulate situations where work is described as a series of operations on one or more machines (rather than the "process flow" type description where SIMUL8 Routing arrows excel.) .