Shipbuilding facility planning and design: A product-centric approach

Mark T. Traband, Daniel A. Finke, Joe Hadfield, Robert Santos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Much of the emphasis on facility design for shipbuilding has focused on improved processes and material flow, whether in the panel lines, block assembly, unit erection, or dry-dock operations. However, the analysis performed during planning for a new structural fabrication facility at the Quonset Point site of Electric Boat Corporation indicates that excessive, non-value-added time is spent in material movement, job setup, and locating resources (crane, service material, inspection equipment, etc.). Although these problems are evident in many shipbuilding operations, they are especially problematic in submarine fabrication, where the structural components are high value added, production volumes are low, movement of in-process products is costly, and inspection requirements are stringent. In planning for the new facility for structural fabrication, Electric Boat is using a product-centric approach. The goal is to define manageable families of products and design a facility to ensure that all of the resources required by these products are readily available during their fabrication. In this paper the authors first present the methodology used to develop process models for the product families at Electric Boat. These process models provide critical input to the design team determining space, equipment, and manpower requirements for the new facility. The authors then discuss the design process for a new facility focused on the production of structural product families for submarines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)240-244
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Ship Production
Issue number4
StatePublished - Nov 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Ocean Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering


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