Cost-constrained project scheduling with task durations and costs that may increase over time: demonstrated with the U.S. Army future combat systems
Grose, Roger T.
Koyak, Robert A.
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We optimize long-term project schedules subject to annual budget constraints, where the duration and cost of each task may increase as the project progresses. Initially, tasks are scheduled without regard to budgets and the project completion time is minimized. Treating the task durations as random variables, we then use simulation to describe the distribution of the project completion time. Next, we minimize the completion time under budget constraints with fixed task durations, where budget violations are tolerated albeit with penalties. Annual reviews are then introduced, which allow underway tasks to be delayed or monthly budgets to be increased. We obtain estimates of the completion time of the project and its final cost under each of these scenarios. The U.S. Army Future Combat Systems (FCS) is used for illustration. FCS is a suite of information technologies, sensors, and command systems with an estimated acquisition cost of over $90 billion. The U.S. General Accounting Office found that FCS is at risk of substantial cost overrun and delay. We analyze three schedule plans for FCS to identify which can be expected to deliver the earliest completion time and the least cost.
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