Aspen SCM

Aspen SCM is a software toolkit produced by Aspentech for tackling supply-chain problems across all industries. It was developed by Chesapeake Decision Sciences under the name "MIMI" and grew out of the practical needs of staff in oil refineries. They face hard planning and scheduling problems which cannot be tackled completely using a single technique but which are amenable to solution using an assortment of different techniques together.

Linear Programming (LP) is the foundation of most planning in oil refineries but the LP solution cannot be implemented directly. Instead it has to be broken down into a workable schedule, i.e. a series of batch operations on the various process units. Mimi made it possible to develop a consistent suite of applications which worked together to tackle the entire problem in a coherent way.

Although it has retained its place in the oil industry, the software has since moved out into manufacturing and logistics and in its guise as Aspen SCM is now targeted at the supply-chain market.

The main components which we use are:

In addition to these there are modules for:

  • demand management;
  • forecasting;
  • SQL access to databases.

The Expert System is the main "glue" for connecting together the various components to create an application. It is not a conventional programming language like Visual Basic or C but is declarative like LISP or Prolog. This creates challenges for programmers who are used to conventional languages and may have no experience of declarative languages. You can find an explanation of how Aspen SCM Expert System works and how to use it in the pages on this website beneath Expert System.

Eudoxus Systems has developed a pretty printer, SYN for Aspen SCM Expert System

  • to help those maintaining legacy systems to understand what their code does;
  • to improve the effectiveness of those developing or modifying code by finding errors before the code is run.

It does this by reformatting rules so that their logical structure is displayed. It also checks the syntax for common errors and highlights structural keywords. Contact Eudoxus Systems for a free trial.