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Supply chain management (SCM) is a topic area of great promise for improving the responsiveness, reliability, safety and overall affordability of transportation to and from space. Routinely associated with just the field of logistics, or narrow overhead functions (like "purchasing"), modern supply chain management has evolved to offer improvement paths across most of the functions of a complex organization. This page consolidates links to KSC work in this field and some information relevant to improvements in SCM that may hold the key to transforming the space transportation enterprise.
A Supply Chain Management Perspective Applied to NASA/Industry Space Transportation Systems
The Earth-to-Orbit (E2O) Supply Chain Simulation project begins by treating information flows (sustaining engineering, requirements management, configuration control, scheduling, planning, administrative, financial, etc.) as integral to material flows, such as flight and ground hardware processing, assembly, launch, return for refurbishment, reuse, disposition and servicing. This linkage is possible by taking advantage of existing, well established models in supply chain management (SCM). These descriptive models have organized the functional definitions for representing and analyzing the relationships between material and information flows. The model of choice here is the Supply Chain Council's Supply Chain Operations Reference (SCOR) model.
The "E2O Sim" project takes advantage of existing capabilities to create simulations automatically. The simulation is based on user inputs that require mostly operations subject matter expertise, not simulation programming/software skills. The analyst represents their specific supply chain using the relatively simple SCOR framework of plan, source, make, deliver and return functions (with a handful of others, such as inventory).
This project created an analytical capability for the supply chain for NASA's Vision for Space Exploration. This capability has been implemented in a team and a tool that can contribute to decision making and discovery for the NASA Constellation program and beyond.
Papers & Presentations: