Success Story

The Challenge

In the metals industry, a small change can make a big difference in terms of costs. Trouble is, you might have to consider thousands of constraints across hundreds of heats. So how does a company determine how a change in any one constraint might affect costs?
One company turned to MSA for answers.

The Solution

MSA’s Metals and Advanced Manufacturing division recommended that the client use our Blending Optimization Software Suite™, BOSS™. BOSS determines the least-cost combination of raw materials needed to produce a given heat, line-up, or production schedule, taking into account all of a company’s various operating and quality constraints.
BOSS considers the current inventory, available market materials, material chemistry information, and the chemical and physical constraints to calculate the least expensive mixture of materials to meet a product specification.
This particular client was using BOSS to schedule a week’s worth of heats at a time, but they wanted a special sensitivity analysis report, summarizing the costs of each constraint considered while calculating the charges for hundreds of heats. We’re talking constraints in the thousands.
MSA prepared the special analysis report, and in reviewing, the client found an elemental maximum constraint on one standard grade that showed a cost of $14,000.

The Results

Our BOSS report indicated that if the company were able to increase the maximum amount of that particular element by one pound in a 200,000-pound heat, they would be able to save $14,000 each time they made that standard grade. Quality, operations, and sales personnel all approved of the change, and the client was able to recognize great, on-going savings.

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