Author ORCID Identifier

Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME)

Document Type

Master's Thesis




Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Wei Li

Second Advisor

Dr. Fazleena Badurdeen


The perioperative process in hospitals can be modelled as a 3-stage no-wait flow shop. The utilization of OR units and the average waiting time of patients are related to makespan and total completion time, respectively. However, minimizations of makespan and total completion time are NP-hard and NP-complete. Consequently, achieving good effectiveness and efficiency is a challenge in no-wait flow shop scheduling. The average idle time (AIT) and current and future idle time (CFI) heuristics are proposed to minimize makespan and total completion time, respectively. To improve effectiveness, current idle times and future idle times are taken into consideration and the insertion and neighborhood exchanging techniques are used. To improve efficiency, an objective increment method is introduced and the number of iterations is determined to reduce the computation times. Compared with three best-known heuristics for each objective, AIT and CFI heuristics can achieve greater effectiveness in the same computational complexity based on a variety of benchmarks. Furthermore, AIT and CFI heuristics perform better on trade-off balancing compared with other two best-known heuristics. Moreover, using the CFI heuristic for operating room (OR) scheduling, the average patient flow times are decreased by 11.2% over historical ones at University of Kentucky Health Care.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)