SUNConferences, Southern African Institute of Industrial Engineering 2013

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Comparing Theory of Constraints (TOC) with TRIZ in Solving a Production Problem – A Case Study
B A Lebepe, Bruno Emwanu

Last modified: 2013-06-18


This research investigates the usability of TRIZ in a non- traditional area namely non-technical environment and compares results to that of TOC. The applicability in a non-technical environment is tested using a single case study in a production environment of a coal mine in South Africa. The task selected was improving the efficiency of a colliery by increasing the amount of coal conveyed by the conveyer belts. With constraints being the systems of scales and chutes which directly deposited coal onto the conveyer belt, solutions were generated for this system using the two tools and compared for strengths and weaknesses.

TRIZ was found to be applicable to this production environment and able to solve the problem that TOC traditionally did. In this respect it provided an alternative tool to TOC for the particular constraint considered. In addition TRIZ provided more options for solutions than TOC, although not all could be completed within the time constraints of the research. Further, TRIZ seemed to provide a stronger solution compared to TOC. Within limitations, overall TRIZ seems to be a more powerful tool for the selected production problem.


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