Student: Yanzhe Ma

Project: Simulation of a Flexible Tow-State Markov Chain

View: Research Poster (PDF)

Institution: Lehigh University

Major: Industrial and Systems Engineering / Integrated Business and Engineering

Advisor: Lawrence Snyder


A series of supply disruptions have been observed following the global COVID-19 outbreak. We believe that the study of such disruptions could lead to valuable risk-mitigation strategies. In this paper, we present models for simulating these disruptions in assembly supply chain systems to quantitatively study and compare their effects. The goal is to identify and compare the optimal inventory targets and total cost of each system under various disruptions and supply network structures. Our simulation model can be extended to a wide range of supply chains and disruptions. Each node in the model uses a base-stock policy, links flexibly with other nodes, and specifies production requirements from predecessors. We use a two-state Markov chain system to simulate the disruptions in our models. We discuss how to use these models to study the optimal base-stock levels and total cost under different types of disruptions and supply chain structures, and we use these results to develop risk-mitigation strategies for future supply disruptions.


About Yanzhe Ma

Yanzhe Ma, is a senior student at Lehigh University. She is pursuing dual degrees in Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISE) and the Integrated Business & Engineering Honors Program. She also has minors in Materials Science & Engineering and Data Science. Yanzhe chose ISE as her focus because she is interested in discovering the underlying principles that govern seemingly random events, and subsequently applying these principles to improve the performance of large-scale systems. Yanzhe has conducted two research projects in ISE. Her first project focuses on applying reinforcement learning to demand forecasting in a competitive environment. Her second project focuses on studying how supply disruptions affect different supply chain systems. Yanzhe looks forward to exploring intersections of data analytics and ISE in her future years at Lehigh and beyond.