The wafer probing scheduling problem (WPSP)

W.l. Pearn, S. H. Chung*, M. H. Yang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


The wafer probing scheduling problem (WPSP) is a variation of the parallel-machine scheduling problem, which has many real-world applications, particularly, in the integrated circuit (IC) manufacturing industry. In the wafer probing factories, the jobs are clustered by their product types, which must be processed on groups of identical parallel machines and be completed before the due dates. Further, the job processing time depends on the product type, and the machine setup time is sequence dependent on the orders of jobs processed. Since the wafer probing scheduling problem involves constraints on job clusters, job-cluster dependent processing time, due dates, machine capacity, and sequence dependent setup time, it is more difficult to solve than the classical parallel-machine scheduling problem. In this paper, we formulate the WPSP as an integer programming problem. We also transform the WPSP into the vehicle routing problem with time windows (VRPTW), a well-known network routing problem which has been investigated extensively. An illustrative example is given to demonstrate the proposed transformation. Based on the provided transformation, we present three efficient algorithms to solve the WPSP near-optimally. Journal of the Operational Research Society.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)864-874
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of the Operational Research Society
Issue number8
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2002


  • Parallel machine scheduling
  • Vehicle routing with time windows
  • Wafer probing

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