Optimize Production Schedules and Decrease Manufacturing Costs

Challenge

A large hydrocarbon processing company configured the C3 AI® Production Schedule Optimization application on a large polypropylene plant to optimize production schedules and minimize manufacturing costs.

The company operates 35 refinery and petrochemicals plants in North America producing polymers, ethanol, asphalt, and fuels. The company sought to embed AI and machine learning across their businesses to fuel digital transformation efforts. After extensive due diligence, the company chose C3 AI to improve demand forecasting and optimize production schedules across its polypropylene plant.

Approach

C3 AI developers first integrated the company’s disparate data sources – including demand forecasts, customer orders, production costs, and parts inventory – into a unified, federated data image. Using the unified data image, the C3 AI team built machine learning models to characterize and predict customer demand and configured optimization algorithms to generate optimal production schedules for the upcoming 60 days. By configuring the C3 AI Production Schedule Optimization application, the company is able to generate production schedules that minimized manufacturing costs and improved customer demand forecasting accuracy by 20%.

Project Objectives

  • Integrate disparate data sources across supply chain planning and production scheduling processes
  • Improve customer demand forecasting using AI and machine learning
  • Reduce manufacturing costs using production schedule optimization

About the Company

  • 350,000 tons of polypropylene production per year
  • 35 refinery and petrochemicals plants in North America
  • 6,000 employees

Project Highlights

  • 16 weeks from kick-off to pre-production application
  • 10 data sources integrated
  • Over 480,000 rows of historical data ingested
  • 107 features constructed for demand uncertainty machine learning model
  • Over 2 million constraints configured from 20 operational categories for optimization algorithm

Results

+20%
Improvement in demand forecasting accuracy
+2M
Operational and logistical constraints incorporated
16
Weeks to complete pre-production application
10
Data sources integrated and unified

Solution Architecture

C3 AI Suite

Enterprise AI for Manufacturing

The C3 AI Suite provides the necessary comprehensive capabilities to build enterprise-scale AI applications 18-26x faster than alternative approaches. The C3 AI Suite enables manufacturers to rapidly integrate petabyte-scale data from any/all enterprise systems, operational sources, sensor networks, and external providers to power machine learning models that generate predictive insights to solve previously unsolvable problems.

Many global manufacturers are already using the C3 AI Suite to drive digital transformation efforts, generating results such as: reducing inventory by as much as 35%, lowering waste caused by quality defects by over 20%, and generating hundreds of millions of dollars in economic value annually.