Line of Balance – Is It a Synthesis of Lean Production Principles as Applied to Site Programming of Works?

Rafael de Sousa Leal Martins Moura1, José Márcio Feitosa Monteiro2 & Luiz Fernando Mählmann Heineck3

1Master Student, Federal University of Ceará, Fortaleza, CE, Brazil, rafaelleall@hotmail.com
2Civil Engineer, Fortaleza, CE, marcioccap@gmail.com
3Professor, State University of Ceará - UECE, Fortaleza, CE, Brazil, freitas8@terra.com.br

Abstract

Evidence on the use of Line of Balance as a scheduling technique already exists in the Brazilian construction industry since the 80’. More recently it has been associated with Lean Construction applications, especially as tool for tactical planning of works. This conceptual paper discusses how line of balance can be taken not just as a straightforward graphical device to depict site programming in long, medium and short terms but also as an appropriate graphical tool to represent, induce and make self-evident the application of several Lean Production ideas like takt time, buffers transparency, integrated planning of long, medium and short term, minimization of production and transfer batches, PDCA, production levelling, inventory minimizing, pull production and parallel operations, among others. Each of these concepts is illustrated using line of balance displays. The work concludes that Line of Balance is akin to Lean Production and Lean Production is very well represented by Line of Balance diagrams, aiming at further discussions on this conceptual synthesis (lean is line and line is lean).

Keywords

Line of balance, building schedules, lean construction, lean conceptual synthesis, graphical communication of lean principles.

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Reference

Moura, R.D.S.L.M. , Monteiro, J.M.F. & Heineck, L.F.M. 2014, 'Line of Balance – Is It a Synthesis of Lean Production Principles as Applied to Site Programming of Works? ' In:, Kalsaas, B.T., Koskela, L. & Saurin, T.A., 22nd Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction. Oslo, Norway, 25-27 Jun 2014. pp 703-714

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