An integrated simulation and AHP approach to vegetable grafting operation design

Chao Meng, Dong Xu, Young-Jun Son, Chieri Kubota, Myles Lewis, Russell E Tronstad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

13 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

For vegetable seedling propagators, integrating grafting technology into their propagation operations is critical to keeping or expanding market share in the near future. In this paper, an integrated discrete event simulation and Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) approach is proposed to help vegetable seedling propagators design grafting operation. The proposed approach consists of four steps: (1) defining performance criteria and factors (i.e. system alternative parameters and noise factors), (2) identifying significant factors via Design of Experiment (DOE), (3) evaluating system alternatives, and (4) AHP. For steps 2 and 3, a generic propagation simulator is developed with the focus on specific grafting operations (e.g. creating rootstocks, scions and grafted seedlings) while considering biological factors (e.g. seed disease and disease infection). Both classic and fuzzy AHP methods are adopted for addressing multiple criteria (e.g. variable cost, grafting throughput time, total capital expenses, resource utilization and percentage of order fulfilled in time with acceptable quality) of decisions. To address the imprecise ranking led by utilizing sample means of alternative performance data in pairwise comparison, a Best Alternative Search (BAS) procedure is proposed for AHP by considering bounds of confidence intervals in ranking alternatives. In the experiments, six system alternatives involving three automation levels (e.g. manual, semi- and fully-automated grafting) and eight scenarios are applied to a large-scale seedling propagator located in North America. Results demonstrate that (1) classic AHP produces the similar trend as fuzzy AHP, (2) the proposed BAS procedure can ensure the ranking accuracy of AHP, and (3) the proposed approach can be successfully used by vegetable seedling propagators to support the design of a grafting operation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)73-84
Number of pages12
JournalComputers and Electronics in Agriculture
Volume102
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2014

Fingerprint

Analytic hierarchy process
Vegetables
grafting (plants)
vegetable
vegetables
seedling
seedlings
ranking
simulation
variable costs
market share
rootstock
scions
automation
Discrete event simulation
confidence interval
rootstocks
simulator
Design of experiments
experiment

Keywords

  • Best alternative search
  • Discrete event simulation
  • Fuzzy logic
  • Seedling propagation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Horticulture
  • Forestry
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Animal Science and Zoology

Cite this

An integrated simulation and AHP approach to vegetable grafting operation design. / Meng, Chao; Xu, Dong; Son, Young-Jun; Kubota, Chieri; Lewis, Myles; Tronstad, Russell E.

In: Computers and Electronics in Agriculture, Vol. 102, 03.2014, p. 73-84.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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