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This page concisely summarizes all the sponsored research activities of Purush Damodaran. A brief description of various activities (both on-going and completed) for each sponsored project is listed. The graduate/undergraduate students who worked on these research projects are listed in italics.

SPX Hydraulic Technologies

Process improvement for power team product line at SPX (8/12 - 5/13)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Omar Ghrayeb, Lamiae El Harrak, Fawwad Manzoor, Murul Mubinah Suhaimi, Neeraj Tadur

  • Formed pump families using clustering algorithms
  • Proposed a new mixed model assembly line, used simulation to valid the recommendations
  • Applied line balancing algorithm to balance the line
  • Conducted pilot studies to ensure the proposed mixed model line is balanced and can meet the customer demand
  • Developed work standards for products manufactured in two cells
  • Product documentation - manuals for installing, maintenance, troubleshooting, etc.


Improving warehouse operations at 3M distribution center (8/11 - 12/13)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Omar Ghrayeb, Kenneth Strohm, Jonathan Easto, Stefan Van Aulock, Alan Toomsen 

  • Analysis of value add area
  • Analysis of outside warehouse
  • Six Sigma project for warehouse B
  • Replenishment efforts - several mini projects
  • Safety stock, flow rack, product affinity study
  • Designing UPS area of the warehouse
  • Time studies - all activities


Analyzing and minimizing transportation costs (6/12 - 2/12)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Tom Bowers

Cost analysis of various transactions, identified and recommended solutions to reduce overall cost.


Analyzing the paint lines at Caterpillar (8/12 - 12/12)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Shanthi Muthuswamy, Yeshwanth Reddy, Prathyusha Rangavajjulu

Data collection for all the zones in the paint line, analysis to improve cycle time, process improvement projects

Process improvements for CAT Aurora wheel loader assembly lines (9/11 - 12/11)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Omar Ghrayeb, Lamiae Harrak, Priyanka Vuppala, Vishnu Vardhan, Akshata Ankkam

  1. Clustering - tool arrangement, work bench setup
  2. Time studies
  3. Lean - process improvement

Mixed model assembly line balancing for LWL at Caterpillar (9/10 - 5/11)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Omar Ghrayeb, Shasti Satyanani, Mohammed Wajahed, Brian Babo

  1. Mixed model line balancing, scheduling models and algorithms for LWL, launch sequence
  2. Analyzed repair bay area using simulation and six sigma tools
  3. Analyzed paint area - line balancing, process improvement, pre builds, tractors


Process improvements at Suncast (5/11 - 5/12)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Omar Ghrayeb, Nathan McKnight

Layout, parts bagging, time studies, MPP, ...

Improving warehouse operations at Montgomery distribution center (1/11 - 10/11)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Omar Ghrayeb, Aaron Call

Optimum lane depth, space optimization, slotting, order picking, rack design, customer family

Developing standard operating procedures and process improvement (1/10 - 5/11)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Omar Ghrayeb, Nicholas Weichman, Patrick Frega

  1. Time studies, MPP, process improvements, MIP models for integrating production planning, transportation and scheduling, scrap count, ergonomics for table design
  2. Cost estimation, layout, labor, probabilistic analysis of missing parts in bagging area

Product quality testing (6/10 - 12/11)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Richard Marcellus, Kevin Rutskowski, Shajan Raj

Customized product tests, document test results, process improvements for end user assembly

Ford Tool

Analyzing the quotation process and production system at Ford Tool (9/09 - 7/11)

Team: Purush Damodaran (PI), Omar Ghrayeb, Adolfo Rayon

  1. Improving quotation process - process mapping, time studies, product families, standard templates, cross training, etc.
  2. Production system analysis - bottleneck analysis, cell formation.

National Science Foundation

University-Industry graduate research assistantships for developing analytical models to estimate performance measures and optimize resource allocation in complex server manufacturing (1/08 - 12/09)

Team: Purush Damodaran (PI), Maria Hulett

Queueing network approximations for server assembly facilities, job failures, parallel processing, job circulation, Markovian and General distributions, error terms, decomposition techniques.

Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines

Modeling planned and unplanned crew movement at Royal Caribbean (1/09 - 8/09)

Team: Purush Damodaran (PI), Marco Zuniga, Jaime Perez

  1. Simulation models to simulate planned crew member movements.
  2. Mixed-integer linear formulations to optimize planned crew member movements.
  3. Simulation - Optimization models for planned and unplanned crew member movements.

Innovative Scheduling

A decision support system for the train schedule design problem (7/07 - 10/08)

Team: Purush Damodaran (PI), Yuan Sheu, Siddharth Mestry

Meet pass planning, algorithms, heuristics...

Integrating hump yard operations with railroad blocking (10/07 - 10/08)

Team: Purush Damodaran (PI), Michael Gatto

Simulation and optimization models for yard operations.


Modeling and Simulation of lean manufacturing systems (1/06 - 8/06)

Team: Purush Damodaran, Hari Srihari, Maria Schneider

  1. Simulation optimization of server manufacturing facilities.
  2. Optimizing drilling holes in hyper BGA lines.
  3. Simulation for hyper BGA lines.

Improving manufacturing systems performance through simulation and modeling (09/05 - 08/06)

Contact Info

Purush Damodaran
Engineering Building 230
Northern Illinois University, DeKalb, IL 60115