The Improvement of the Airbag Manufacturing: A Case Study of the Automotive Safety Equipment

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Thosapon Thongchai
Pichit Sukchareonpong


The main objective of this research is to improve the efficiency of the airbag manufacturing. The side airbag production line has been selected as the pilot study. The production line efficiency improvement is necessary to respond and support the customers’ demands as well as increasing the productivity of the company.

The side airbag production line under studied was not being able to fulfill the increasing customer demands. The research started by collecting the data represented the existing situation. The data are then analyzed and the Industrial Engineering techniques are applied. The ECRS and Yamazumi Chart technique for line balancing are applied to improve the process. In order to reduce the defective in the process, the Kaizen technique was finally implemented.

It has been proven that the techniques employed in this study can improve the efficiency of the side airbag manufacturing. The results obtained were: three operators have been reduced, the output is increased to 84 pieces per shift, and the productivity is increased from 3.16 pieces per man-hour to 4.43 pieces per man-hour. The product quality also improved. The defective rate is reduced by 1.99%, from 3.07% to 1.08%. The implementation of the line balancing technique reduces waiting time, so thus the OEE is increased by 9.22%, from 87.72% to 96.94%.


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