+61 2 4926 1500 | email@example.com | 7 Riverside Drive, Mayfield West (Newcastle) Australia
Simulation Modelling Services (SMS) is an Advitech Group company specialising in decision support solutions. SMS uses modelling and analytics technologies to support major strategic decisions, such as evaluating capital projects, improvement programs or cost saving initiatives. We don’t just tell you what ‘is’, but also what could be – helping you to understand the big picture implications, minimise risks and identify opportunities.
Comprehensive data analysis is an important springboard for success, but the best results require specialists with the ability to convert that data into scenario models that reliably predict outcomes. Our team can work with you to elicit the most powerful insights, and support your decision-making process. It is this combination of services that sets us apart.
SMS is rigorously independent, and can provide an honest and objective view of your situation. We use a mix of technology and methodologies to test future options by adjusting the dynamic elements of a system and understanding the resulting performance.
Our people are chosen for their breadth of industry experience, and ability to grasp complexity. We employ Australia’s leading Arena software authorities – specialists who can make the technology do things that other people simply cannot. If you have an in-house team, these are the same specialists who can implement Arena on site and train your people in best-practice utilisation.
Our track record unequivocally shows that we provide the insights required to increase productivity, reduce capital expenditure requirements and build your competitive advantage.
With SMS, you can be confident that you understand the possibilities.
SMS supports the decision making capabilities of its customers through advanced modelling techniques; data analytics; strategy consulting; machine learning; and capability development – including simulation software distribution, support and training.
If you are interested in predicting future outcomes and unlocking the value of existing data, then we can help you.
Simulation modelling is a well-established technology applied to both system design and process improvement for a broad range of industry sectors. SMS creates, refines and tests simulation models to deliver simulation-based decision capability tools to our customers. Our strategy consultants support you to work with these decision tools to analyse scenario options and determine the best strategies and outcomes for your operations.
In addition to our consulting services, our experienced simulation modelling consultants are also available for secondment to your site to work with your project team on medium to long term projects.
Call us on +61 4926 1500 to discuss.
SMS are experienced in complex data analytics, including machine learning, statistical process control and simulation. Through the collection and review of historical performance data, SMS can provide insights into the opportunities available to optimise your business processes, so that you can achieve productivity gains. Our machine learning capabilities contribute to The Advitech Group’s IoT/IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things) offerings.
SMS distributes and supports Arena® simulation modelling software by Rockwell Automation. Arena® is the world’s leading simulation software, providing the power required for successful simulation within an easy-to-use modelling environment. It has been used successfully by organisations the world over to advance the efficiency and productivity of their business. We offer any support you require to maximise the return on your business simulation investment, including a product support help-desk and consulting advice to help you get going with your projects. To purchase Arena, call us on +61 2 4926 1500.
SMS provides comprehensive training and support to users of the Arena family of simulation software products.
Regular training courses are run from our Newcastle office, or we can bring our training to you. Our Introduction to Simulation with Arena workshop equips first-time modellers with the skills to tackle simulation projects in their own work environment.
More advanced courses are offered on request. SMS also offers customised training courses to suit your unique needs, which we can host at your premises or ours.
Contact us on +61 2 4926 1500 to discuss your training needs.
Our decision support tools and techniques are widely applicable, and our experienced team has applied them across a variety of industry sectors. (Click a tile to read more)
SMS has applied simulation modelling to airport logistics at major airports including Sydney International Terminal. Completed projects have included the modelling of gate occupancy and development of gate allocation planning tools to assist with flight scheduling; and baggage handling modelling to explore options for the management of baggage and to assist with labour rostering.
The SMS team has applied simulation modelling to a range of applications within the Australian defence industry, including capacity assessment and workforce planning. We have engaged directly with the Department of Defence as well as primes such as Boeing and Lead Lease. In recognition of our strong capabilities in the sector, SMS was recently approved as a provider on the Australian Dept of Defence Simulation Support Panel – ‘Standing offer for the provision of a range of simulation support services’.
Ammunition Plant Capacity Assessment
As part of the delivery of a new Ammunition Plant at Mulwala, the Department of Defence required that the prime contractor, Lend Lease, demonstrate that the propellant production facility had the capacity to meet surge delivery targets. Lend Lease engaged SMS to model proposed system designs and test likely performance. Modelling highlighted several design issues which were incrementally rectified until a workable facility was completed.
The Preparedness Branch of VCDF engaged SMS to develop a model to forecast future personnel levels across the ADF organisation structure over a 4 to 20 year period. This model used planned intake numbers for ranks within each of the services, then estimated likely force strength at various points in time. The system was aimed at addressing issues related to force structures, recruitment and training of personnel, training delivery capacity requirements, system constraints and force transition impacts.
SMS was engaged by Boeing to develop a ‘Mission Support Performance Simulation’ analysis tool, which informed their successful tender to supply aircraft to the Australian Department of Defence (Project Wedgetail). The model simulated the operation of a fleet of Boeing 737 aircraft to assess their likely on-station performance. It assessed the time to return the aircraft to service after a failure, depending on the availability of spares and the nominal repair time. The ultimate output of the model was expected aircraft availability depending on variables such as episode duration, spares holdings and the number of aircraft in the fleet.
SMS developed a suite of tools for the Integrated Logistics Division of the Army Logistics Training Centre (ALTC) at Bandiana, to allow the ALTC to ‘play out’ solutions put forward by participants in logistics courses in order to evaluate their effectiveness. SMS created a Concept Demonstrator Model which enabled the visual animation of a deployment of a force, incorporating appropriate times, speeds, and rules applying to the movement of vehicles, aircraft and rail resources. The model highlighted any deficiencies in the deployment and collected statistics which allowed evaluation of the proposed solution. Building on the experience gained in development of the model, SMS built a toolbox of constructs to enable ALTC personnel to easily put together similar course evaluators for other transport, maintenance, medical evacuation and supply functions.
Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) Industry
SMS can help the LNG industry across different aspects of their operations including:
- Evaluating the entire supply chain performance
- Maximising capacity utilisation
- Improving operational efficiency
- Sizing new FLNG/LNG trains and equipment
- Exploring LNG production bottlenecks
- Determining storage requirements
- Evaluating new designs
- Testing operating strategies
Logistics and Supply Chains
SMS has applied simulation modelling to countless logistic and supply chain projects – simulating the movement of all manner of ‘things’ from A to B to C, by truck, train, ship or air. Our varied projects have included processing plants, equipment maintenance, shipping fleet scheduling, port operations, coal transport networks, rail operations, postal services, Defence aircraft support performance, pathology sample processing and supply chain modelling.
- We developed a simulation model to study the storage and logistic requirements for development of a processing plant. This model helped to size storage requirements for raw materials, intermediate and finished products, and to assess the likely impact on storage requirements of the rail transfer of these materials.
- SMS created a model template for a mail sorting centre which encompassed various sorting mechanisms, inward bulk mail receipt and despatch of sorted product. The template was then available as a basis for the client to readily build their own models of each of their mail exchange sites.
- In order to evaluate a radical change to the philosophy of scheduling its shipping fleet, an interactive model was developed to assist a shipping fleet operator with the development of alternative schedules and aid quantification and evaluation of the difference between various alternatives.
- Coal Stockpiling and Logistics Case Study
- Pit to Port Supply Chain Optimisation Case Study
Our simulation modelling experience extends across the manufacturing industry, from food and beverage production to the manufacture of building products, telephone assembly and racking plant operations.
- SMS developed a simulation model for a new manufacturing facility for CSR Hebel which demonstrated that the proposed design could not meet the production requirements. The model helped to identify options and quantify their performance, assisting in a redesign which would achieve required outcomes. Read Full Case Study
- We developed a detailed production model for a proposed major upgrade to a building board production plant, taking into consideration intermediate storage requirements for drying and cooling of product, the influence of product sequencing on storage requirements, and the distribution of tasks between available forklift trucks.
- We modelled a proposed new cheese production facility in Victoria to simulate additive handling and transfer of mixtures to cookers, and to develop scheduling strategies for blenders.
- We modelled product handling through a complex network of conveyors at a food and beverage operation before a significant redesign of their operations. The modelling identified a serious shortcoming in the initial design which allowed major changes to the proposed layout before the project progressed too far.
SMS has extensive ‘pit-to-port’ experience across the mining industry – including coal, copper, iron ore and hard rock mining. This experience encompasses underground and open pit mining, haulage, stockpiling, maintenance planning, materials handling and transport.
- SMS undertook modelling and analysis of a complex coal transportation system for a coal stockpiling and logistics upgrade project. Read Full Case Study
- SMS worked with SKM to model the ore handling system associated with a block cave copper mining operation in South America. The simulation modelling reviewed the extraction of ore from over 500 draw points and its delivery to six underground crushing stations, to estimate equipment requirements and review the feasibility of the proposed mine layout.
- SMS simulated a proposed cave development to evaluate alternative designs and explore the impact of various infrastructure arrangements on production. The model was used to develop a strategy for the scheduling of operations and to understand the expected consequences of different rock fragmentation scenarios once production commenced. Several additional studies built on the original model to support further developments at the site.
- SMS modelled an African copper mine – covering mining; road, rail and conveyor transport; and the stockpiling of ore and mullock. The modelling assisted in both mine planning and the development of strategies for the internal transfer of ore/mullock within the mine. The modelling provided an understanding of the complex interactions in the materials handling system and allowed operating procedures to be developed to improve productivity.
- We modelled underground rail logistics to review and optimise the removal, reconditioning and return of longwall roof chocks to avoid rail traffic congestion and minimise lost production time. The modelling allowed the quantitative assessment of alternative strategies and their implementation costs against likely production losses.
- We developed simulation models of open pit mine and transportation infrastructure to evaluate various development proposals and modes of operation, with a focus on the handling, stockpiling and processing of coal. The primary areas modelled included shovel and trucking operations, stockpile management and coal washery operations.
SMS has extensive port experience. We have modelled Newcastle Harbour port operations, several coal loader operations, and numerous projects related to materials handling – including coal, bauxite and grain.
- SMS worked with Bechtel to model a coal terminal to simulate the handling of coal from receival, through stacking, stockpiling, reclaiming and loading to ship. Particular attention was paid to coal placement within the yard and the movement of yard equipment for stacking and reclaiming to ensure that the model accurately reflected the complexity of these activities. After validation against current operations, the simulation model was used to evaluate a range of expansion options and estimate expected terminal throughput capacity.
- We modelled upgrade alternatives for a grain and woodchip loading facility to explore the impact of various upgrade scenarios on vessel turnaround times and assess the impact of several alternative management strategies.
- We simulated port operations related to increased raw materials delivery to a steelworks in South Carolina USA, prior to the commencement of a significant new operation. The modelling provided significant insight into the likely additional traffic and resulting port congestion – allowing decisions to be made in respect of tug requirements and additional berthing infrastructure.
- We developed a model for the transfer of bauxite from mine site through to refinery to assist with a long-term program aimed at achieving full business potential and a shorter-term program aimed at reducing operating costs. The modelling exercise established port capacity, critical throughput constraints, and potential improvements to delivery systems.
The SMS team has extensive experience in smelter operations, and has assisted numerous smelters across Australia over the last 20+ years including Tomago Aluminium and Bell Bay. Projects have covered various aspects of smelter operations including anode handling; casthouse operations; molten aluminium transport; ingot mill scheduling; nickel smelter upgrade; and zinc materials handling.
- Simulation modelling of molten aluminium and casthouse operations to review options for the management of crucibles and crucible transport vehicles (CTVs). Parameters reviewed included the number of crucibles and CTVs, location of pickup points, quantity of and time taken for scrap melting in VDC furnaces, siphon downtimes, and continuous ingot casting. The option for a dedicated CTV in the furnace area was considered, along with a review of the crucible cleaning area and its impact on overall production.
- Extensive modelling of anode handling to support the introduction of new technology. Issues addressed included the number and size of vehicles involved in the placement of trays on rodded anodes beside potlines preparatory to the changing out of anodes in individual cells; the collection of anode butts after change-out and their return to the rodding room; alternate schedules for anode changes; and interference of anode and butt transfers with other production activities.
- Modelling of the collection, transportation and consumption of molten aluminium to support upgrade planning. The study reviewed proposed changes to various aspects of the casthouse operation, and determined the number of furnaces required and the dependence of this upon the mix of products made.
- Study of ingot mill operations to assist with managing hot metal usage following a revision of operating procedures and increased production levels. The study was used to develop appropriate scheduling methodologies. It also highlighted some areas of concern with the proposed upgrade. This model was subsequently used to investigate further operational changes.
- Modelling of a nickel smelter to support a proposed upgrade in converter capacity. The model studied the impact of the upgrade on upstream and downstream processes and established the point at which interference between two overhead cranes became a limiting factor in throughput. Advice was also provided on different work practices relating to crane operation.
- Analysis of raw materials handling and storage to assist with planning for a proposed third potline. The study looked at the arrival, ship unloading, transfer, storage and consumption of all raw materials; and the circulation of the various recycled materials within the plant.
- Other smelting projects relating to high purity model capture; butt cleaning; alloying furnaces, modelling of anode baking furnaces; aluminium bath delivery, rodding room simulation; carbon bake conversion; and continuous homogenising study.
With a strong background as an analyst and programmer, Lucas, Managing Director of SMS, works with clients to enable data-driven decision-making through the use of simulation modelling and advanced analytics.
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