Congratulations to IEM student Joseph Soueidy, the 2023 recipient of the prestigious MSFEA Penrose Award. The Penrose Award is an honorary annual award given to outstanding undergraduates at each faculty on the basis of scholarship, character, leadership and contribution to university’s life.
IEM Creative Achievement Award in 2022-2023
The IEM creative achievement award is given to the final year project (FYP) group that demonstrates the most creativity and innovation in their work. The winners for the 2022-23 academic year were IE undergraduate students Joy Bechara, Rachel El Hajjar, Lucie Marie Gebrael, Nareg Panossian, and Joseph Soueidy whose project was entitled "Optimization of Arcenciel’s Hospital Waste Treatment Center ". Congratulations!
Joy Bechara, Rachel El Hajjar, and Joseph Soueidy - "Optimization of Arcenciel’s Hospital Waste Treatment Center"
Arcenciel is a Lebanese non-profit NGO that provides support to Lebanon’s most underprivileged
and marginalized communities. Among its multiple areas of work, Arcenciel holds the largest
treatment operations for Infectious Healthcare Waste (IHCW) in Lebanon, with its biggest
treatment center being in Beirut. If not managed properly, IHCW presents a risk of infection to
patients, healthcare personnel, and the general public. Recently, this risk escalated further due to
the COVID-19 pandemic, after which the amount of IHCW generated daily in Lebanon almost
doubled. Thus, it is crucial to optimize the Arcenciel Hospital Waste Treatment Center’s
operations to mitigate the increase in IHCW generation. In fact, the Beirut treatment center requires
optimization in several fields of its operations, including data management, ergonomics and
worker training, facility planning and optimizing cost expenditures.
To accomplish this, we will pinpoint specific problems to tackle using a variety of Industrial
Engineering tools and techniques. The solutions will require the use of software, various strategies
for data collection, algorithms and computations, and specified equipment.
During the fall semester, we worked on two primary areas of focus: the routes and cost
optimization of the waste transportation by leveraging the Capacitated Vehicle Routing Problem
(CVRP), and the inventory planning of essential material and equipment on which Arcenciel’s
operations depend using the Lot-Size-Reorder Point Systems method with stochastic demand.
As for the Spring semester, we worked on digitalizing the waste tracking form, ergonomically
optimizing the workers’ tasks, applying facilities planning and evaluating the feasibility of
sustainable alternatives. We present sections on methods, models, and results, as well as our
interactions with Arcenciel, while touching on challenges faced and planning for the future through
a revised timeline.
The other nominated team project entitled “Optimization of NokNok: Online Grocery Delivery Service" and the team members are Habib Danial, Norman El Chahni, Andrew Gharghour, Elie Moukarzel, and Adriana Rebeiz
Elie Moukarzel, Andrew Gharghour, Adriana Rebeiz, Habib Danial, and Norman El Chahni - "Optimization of NokNok: Online Grocery Delivery Service."
NokNok is a Lebanese startup company operating in the quick grocery delivery industry. Since
its launch, NokNok has achieved significant success by positioning itself as a delivery app that
prides itself on delivering orders within a remarkable 15-minute timeframe from the moment of
order placement. However, it has come to our attention that this claim was not consistently met.
Our focus throughout the year was on enhancing the efficiency of one of NokNok's busiest
warehouses, located in Badaro, which currently handles the packing and delivery of an average
of 600 orders per day. We identified three key areas for improvement: inventory management,
facilities planning, and quality control. These areas aimed to address issues such as out-of-stock
item complaints, inefficient warehouse management, and delays in order processing, which led
to a significant increase in customer complaints.
In terms of inventory management, we proposed an optimal ordering policy by utilizing a
combination of Newsvendor, order-up-to, and EOQ model ordering policies for different item
categories. To address layout inefficiencies, we employed the Systematic Layout Planning (SLP)
method to suggest a more streamlined layout plan. In tackling latency issues and customer
complaints, we implemented Six Sigma concepts and recommended two improvements. Through
the analysis of a substantial sample of customer complaints, we identified three main trends:
orders with missing or defective items, and delays in delivery. Following the DMAIC (Define,
Measure, Analyze, Improve, Control) process, we developed an Out-of-Control Action Plan
(OCAP) model to handle orders with missing or defective items. Additionally, we suggested two
improvements for addressing late orders. The first improvement focused on optimizing the
number of pickers by providing an optimal schedule for picker allocation in the warehouse at all
times. Regarding the second improvement related to picking distance, we conducted experiments
using various route optimization algorithms. Our findings indicated that for orders with fewer
than 5 departments, all algorithms produced similar results. However, when dealing with orders
containing five or more departments, the Savings method algorithm proved to yield the most
These optimizations aim to enhance NokNok's operational processes and provide a higher level
of customer satisfaction. By implementing these improvements, NokNok can strengthen its
position as a preferred grocery delivery service in Lebanon.
IEM Creative Achievement Award in 2020-2021
The IEM creative achievement award is given to the final year project (FYP) group that demonstrates the most creativity and innovation in their work. The winners for the 2020-21 academic year were IE undergraduate students Marc Gholmieh, Joy Haddad, Nour Mouaness, and Dina Yassine whose project was entitled "Rehabililtation of the Government Bus Fleet ". Congratulations!
With the public transportation sector in Lebanon being characterized by inefficiency,
ineffectiveness and unreliability, we have decided to undertake the reformation of the governmental bus fleet as our Final Year Project. Optimizing this bus network will not only give citizens a dependable mode of transit, but also have tremendously favorable consequences on their health and expenditures and the country’s economic state and environmental wellbeing. To reach this ultimate objective, we have worked on allocating bus stops in the various regions complying to certain standards, optimizing the routing network using linear programming, determining the needed number of buses and timetable of operations to satisfy demand using simulation, setting up the ticket pricing strategy along with the ticketing structure, and finally, assessed the government’s capability of funding the project and recommended alternatives for financing the initial investment needed. Throughout the past year, we have consistently employed techniques, methods, and software solutions which we acquired throughout our training in Industrial Engineering, particularly in operations research, simulation, ergonomics and engineering economy, to formulate models, interpret results, and optimize systems based on data collected with the help of extensive research and our potential industry partners.
IEM Creative Achievement Award in 2019-2020
The winners of the 2019-20 IEM creative achievement award were given to the final year project group that is formed of IE undergraduate students Yara Bou Maacher, Mia El Boustani, Nadin El Maalouf, Yassmina Hachem, and Kevin Torbey , whose project was entitled "Enhancing the Facilities that Protect the Planet: Sorting Facility Optimization from Beit Mery to Kfarhazir". Congratulations!
Mia El Boustany, Nadin El Maalouf, Kevin Torbey, Yasmina Hachem, and Yara Bou Maachar - “ Enhancing the Facilties that Protect the Planet: Sorting Facility Optimization from Beit Mery to Kfarhazir "
Lebanon has a bad history of waste management systems that depend on dumping trash in landfills; to end this cycle, the use of sorting facilities to recycle our waste is necessary. Due to the importance of these entities, we decided to base our final year project on tackling the inefficiencies that plague these facilities. The main purpose of this paper is to study and understand the process and inefficiencies of sorting facilities, which would enable us to design an optimal one. Our first phase focused on understanding the problems present in the sorting facility. We compared current working conditions to ergonomic standards and suggested solutions to be implemented. We also conducted time studies on tasks to identify problematic ones that could be improved. Our second phase consisted of designing an optimal facility and supply chain by using three industrial engineering tools. First, we enhanced the old layout by using facilities planning techniques. Compared to the old layout, we got an increase of 48.4% in the adjacency score and a decrease of 25.7% in the distance-based objective. Second, we tackled the vehicle routing problem associated with the pick-ups of trash where we created a linear program. We identified the optimal route which resulted in an 8% decrease in time, money, distance, and carbon footprint. Third, we identified the most feasible recycling facilities to collaborate with while optimizing the drop off schedule of recyclables. Finally, to wrap everything up, we simulated the original and the improved systems to show the impact of our proposed modifications.
IEM Creative Achievement Award in 2018-2019
The IEM creative achievement award is given to the final year project (FYP) group that demonstrates the most creativity and innovation in their work. The winners for the 2018-19 academic year were IE undergraduate students Hammam Abu Hatab, Kareem Kaddoura, Nadim Yatim, and Zein Elabdin Zaher whose project was entitled "Reduce Patients' Waiting time at the AUBMC Ophthalmology Department ". Congratulations!
Hammam Abu Hatab, Nadim Yatim, Zein Elabdin Zaher, and Kareem Kaddoura - “Reduce Patients' Waiting time at the AUBMC Ophthalmology Department "
The main objective of our project was to combine simulation and data analytics in order to reduce patients' waiting time at the AUBMC ophthalmology department where patients wait usually for around an hour. Our procedure included the use Arena Simulation Software to model the flow in the department and continuously track our performance measures. Furthermore, R-Studio was used to plot data concerning the arrival and scheduled times of patients, which highlighted times during which modifications could be made to the process (e.g., Resource Allocation at peak hours). The bottleneck was at the imaging section of the patient's flow. Our recommendation was to reschedule the preparation staff during peak hours to help in imaging as well as adding an imaging staff which decreases waiting time by 20 minutes and increases profits of the department.
Carl Assaf, Judy Bakieh, Aman Chaarani, Celine Alame, and Jawdat Mirza - “Are we there yet? Loop hits the streets of Beirut"
This project illustrate the importance of Mobility as a Service in solving serious environmental and health issues that Lebanon is facing. Loop Sal is a current operating start-up that introduces electrical scooter fleet sharing service in Lebanon.
The overall purpose of the project is to improve the accessibility of scooters to current and potential users and facilitate fast transportation in a profitable, efficient and timely manner. This operational-analytical study was conducted on a one-year data set provided by Loop operators. Collected data sets were analyzed by Input Analyzer, Arena Simulation, Python and Excel software to optimize the allocation of scooters in the current and potential stations in Beirut. Financial data was collected to undergo a pricing strategy using a mathematical model to meet Loop's monetary expectations while satisfying customer's willingness to pay. An evaluation of traffic zones and roads infrastructure was used to determine the allocation of additional station locations.
Michelle Maria Diab, Firas Atoui, and Celine Bitar - “Turning the Grand Factory into an Optimized and Sustainable Nightclub"
The project has two main purposes which are turning the Grand Factory, one of Lebanon's most popular nightclubs, into the first sustainable nightclub in the country and optimizing the flow of people inside and outside of the club in order to improve customer satisfaction. The first propose can be achieved by implementing piezoelectric tiles on the dancefloor. These tiles convert the mechanical energy from footsteps into electrical energy that can be used to power electrical devices at the club and by implementing waterless urinals in the toilets. The other propose which is optimizing the flow of people inside and outside of the club in order to improve customer satisfaction is Implemented by simulating the processes at the main entrance and at the coat check station in order to come up with the optimal implementations.
IEM Creative Achievement Award in 2017-2018
The winners for the 2017-18 academic year were IE undergraduate students Joy Bou Sleiman, Ralph Deeb, Zeina Jouni, and Jeffrey Khattar, whose project was entitled "Optimization of the American University of Beirut Gym". Congratulations!
The other nominated teams were Yara Mia Chamoun, Ramsey Fahed, Chris Maroun, and Lea Nasr (“Optimization of Warehousing Practices at Karim Trading S.A.L.") and and Elias Chahine, Rami El Shammas, Tracy Haoui, and Dina Khoury (“"Beirut Beer Production Line Optimization and Employee Safety")
Joy Bou Sleiman, Ralph Deeb, Zeina Jouni, and Jeffrey Khattar - "Optimization of the American University of Beirut Gym"
Health and fitness are of supreme importance at any stage of human life. People are becoming more and more conscious about their health, and are hence referring to the gym more frequently. Sports are more often than not an adopted mechanism to cope with stress, especially for students and professors who deal with tight schedules and many deadlines. Increasingly, universities around the world are providing their students and faculty with a sports center that caters to these needs. Our objective in this project is to improve the overall gym experience at the Charles Hostler Student Center in the American University of Beirut. We are using our knowledge and expertise in various fields to ensure that the gym at AUB is up to gold standard and that every person entering it will have a great experience that is well rounded and does not lack anything.
Yara Mia Chamoun, Ramsey Fahed, Chris Maroun, and Lea Nasr - "Optimization of Warehousing Practices at Karim Trading S.A.L."
Working on finding optimal solutions to warehousing issues can be particularly challenging, especially when it comes to countries that lag on the use of modern techniques. Karim Trading S.A.L is a warehouse and distribution company that distributes food, fast moving consumer goods, and household products to around 5,000 customers across Lebanon. The company holds 42 product brands, which translates into 680 different products. Despite the large scale of operations of the company, the warehouse is still not running based on predetermined strategies. In this context, we decided that our approach should tackle two main objectives: the design of a new layout for the distribution of products throughout the warehouse, and the development of an order picking strategy applicable to any type of orders. Instinctively, we thought of resolving the issue by looking mainly at optimization tools and trying to derive an integrated model. This reasoning shortly led us to the development of several unrealistic assumptions and simplifications. After extensive research, we shifted our focus towards more flexible and adaptable techniques all based on heuristics. We were able to come up with three different combinations of layouts and order picking strategies: ABC classification, Alphabetical classification, and Weight classification. So far, our empirical research has shown that heuristics can lead up to a 10% improvement on order picking times on average. Our work will now be directed towards a more analytical approach with the aim of concluding based on a final cost-benefit analysis.
Elias Chahine, Rami El Shammas, Tracy Haoui, and Dina Khoury - "Beirut Beer Production Line Optimization and Employee Safety"
This project presents an analysis of a Lebanese Beer Production company. Beirut Beer is a company that proudly differentiates its product as the drink of the Lebanese youth that has been gaining recent recognition for its marketing campaigns. These attributes intrigued both our social and educational facets and have driven us towards our objective throughout this field study. Throughout the course of this project, we have aimed to increase the overall efficiency of Beirut Beer's manufacturing plant through optimizing the production line and improving employee well-being. This project focus on our results to date with emphasis on the production line. The procedure section of the report contains various qualitative techniques that have allowed us to visualize the problem of production such as detailed walk-throughs, interviews with industry partners, fishbone diagrams of the facility, and flow process charts for the entire packaging process. This has led us to build a robust Arena Simulation model that mimics the reality of the process, which consequently highlighted potential problematic areas on the line. In addition to methods, we have compiled the results of our qualitative and quantitative measures by locating bottlenecks on main processes, which allowed us to shift our focus on certain areas in the factory to analyze and monitor. Furthermore, we have begun tackling the issue of noise levels through the creation of a noise level diagram along with measuring noise using an application throughout areas subjected to a high staff concentration. We will conclude with a discussion on future steps and further analysis that would allow us to reach feasible recommendations.
Congratulations to IEM student Mariam Dabboussi, the 2018 recipient of the prestigious MSFEA Penrose Award. This award is given to the one MSFEA graduating student who shows the best combination of scholarship, character, leadership, and contribution to the university. Mariam was the deserving winner of the Penrose Award given her outstanding work throughout her years at AUB. She was the Chief Executive Officer for the 2018 edition of AUB Outdoors, a two-day student-run event that annually attracts over 23,000 people. In a departure from previous editions, this year's profits were used to create the Outdoors Scholarship. Mariam also founded Light Up a Village (LUV), a society that promotes sustainability in rural areas in Lebanon. Their first project involved setting up16 solar-powered lampposts and 10 solar kits in El Mejdel, Northern Lebanon. Last but not least, Mariam founded IISE and served as vice-President and then president of the society. Mariam helped the society gain official accreditation and founded INDE: Decoded, a platform that connects industrial engineering students to pioneers in fields of interest.