Towards zero-warehousing smart manufacturing from zero-inventory just-in-time production

Zhongyuan Lyu, Peng Lin, Darren Guo, George Q. Huang

Research output: Journal article publicationConference articleAcademic researchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


In the past half century, many manufacturers have been striving to achieve the “zero inventory” manufacturing. Suppliers would build the warehouse near the production line to hedge against the strict time delivery requirements for production in zero inventory. Although manufacturing processes have been improved, excessive warehousing operations have been brought along the supply chain. Recently, large manufacturers have invested heavily for industrial 4.0 and warehousing automation, thereby to facilitate warehousing operations and solve the expanding demand for storage space. Although warehousing automation can greatly enhance the efficiency, warehousing is still a non-value-adding process. Warehousing operations should be simplified as much as possible. This paper makes a comprehensive introduction to a new manufacturing mode called Zero-Warehousing Smart Manufacturing (ZWSM) from aspects of concept and process. ZWSM basically aims to avoid traditional non-value-adding warehousing operations such as put away and order picking. Further to reduces the space for storage operations and land demand expansion. Prototype layout and working process design under ZWSM are proposed and three practices to achieve the ZWSM are introduced. Basic Internet of Things (IoT) infrastructures are introduced to achieve real-time materials and inventory holding and delivery operations among different partners.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1270-1276
Number of pages7
JournalProceedings of International Conference on Computers and Industrial Engineering, CIE
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018
Externally publishedYes
Event48th International Conference on Computers and Industrial Engineering, CIE 2018 - Auckland, New Zealand
Duration: 2 Dec 20185 Dec 2018


  • Internet of Things (IoT)
  • Just-in-time (JIT)
  • Manufacturing
  • Warehousing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Computer Science
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Safety, Risk, Reliability and Quality


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