Simulation and modeling - Old Questions

1.  Explain the steps in simulation study. What are the limitation of simulation?

10 marks | Asked in 2071

Simulation is the imitation of the operation of a real-world process or system over time. Simulation involves the generation of an artificial history of the system, and the observation of that artificial history to draw inferences concerning the operating characteristics of the real system that is represented.

Steps in simulation study

1.Problem formulation
     Clearly state the problem.
2. Setting of objectives and overall project plan
     How we should approach the problem.
3. Model conceptualization
     Establish a reasonable model.
4. Data collection
    Collect the data necessary to run the simulation (such as arrival rate, arrival process, service discipline, service rate etc.).
5. Model translation
     Convert the model into a programming language.
6. Verification
     Verify the model by checking if the program works properly. Use common sense.
7. Validation
     Check if the system accurately represent the real system.
8. Experimental design
     How many runs? For how long? What kind of input variations?
9. Production runs and analysis
     Actual running the simulation, collect and analyze the output.
10. Repetition
     Repeat the experiments if necessary.
11. Document and report
     Document and report the results.

12. Implementation: Implement the simulated system in the real world if the simulation results show that it is advantageous to implement the new system or policy.

5: Traditional steps in a simulation study (Banks et al., 2014).

Limitations of simulation 

- Building model requires specialization which is the art learned through experience.
- In some cases, the results of the simulation may be so complex to interpret.
- It may be time consuming and expensive.