Industrial and Systems Engineering

Office: 2143 Manufacturing Engineering Building 4815 Fourth St.; 313-577-3821
Interim Chairperson: Ratna Babu Chinnam

Industrial Engineering is a broadly-based integrated field concerned with enabling complex systems to function effectively. Managing the inventory of a production facility, for example, involves issues of production and stocking policy, manufacturing equipment, human resources, customer demand, and supplier relationships. The industrial engineer must understand the interaction of the components of a system, and coordinate the flow of materials and information to effectively manage the operation. He/she plays an important role in defining information needs and developing strategies for improving decision making in existing systems. The skills of the industrial engineer, however, can be applied in more than just the traditional production environment. In the growing service sector of the economy including health care delivery, public safety, air transportation, energy, and banking issues of resource management, scheduling, quality of service, and systems design are of increasing importance.

Manufacturing Systems Engineering was traditionally involved in developing process capabilities to realize the output of design engineering. Today, design and manufacturing systems engineering is becoming reciprocally integrated and both groups work together in teams to assure the soundness of design and producibility of goods and services. The manufacturing systems engineer must have an understanding of the design process as well as special expertise in the knowledge and understanding of the production process, which is now computer-based and provides flexibility through numerical control. The manufacturing systems engineer is responsible for designing and implementing the cells and production lines which become the basic units of manufacture. Increasingly, such production units are becoming parts of an integrated factory system, and are not simply islands of automation. The manufacturing systems engineer must understand the multi-layered control architecture of the integrated factory, and the computer-based technologies which enable it.

Engineering Management has grown in importance as today’s engineer must possess the necessary tools for effective technical management. Inherent in successful leadership is an understanding of the business functions of an organization, tools used in the decision-making process, and skills for efficient project management, among others. An effective engineering manager will utilize industrial engineering skills to develop strategies that improve the product development process, manage quality and productivity, and advance techniques in world-class manufacturing. More often, a business overview is critical to developing and improving these processes.

Systems Engineering is an interdisciplinary approach and means to enable the realization of successful systems. It focuses on defining customer needs and required functionality early in the development cycle, documenting requirements, then proceeding with design synthesis and system validation while considering the complete problem.

Data Science & Business Analytics is an interdisciplinary program with Computer Science and Mike Ilitch School of Business that is designed to provide a broad range of data science and analytics knowledge and skills. This fast growing field is quickly becoming a key facet of business strategy with increasing need for employees who can think uniquely across disciplines to transform data into relevant insights for making better decisions.

Facilities: The Department maintains laboratories in systems simulation, computer-aided manufacturing, smart engineering systems, big data, design, and concurrent engineering.

Master's Degree Programs of this department offer the flexibility of full or part-time study. Most of the courses are offered in the evening, allowing students to continue full-time employment in local industries. Some program classes are offered at off-campus sites. Many of the graduate-level courses are also offered in the evening, allowing graduate students also to continue full-time employment in local industries. To further accommodate the working student population, several engineering courses are offered online (refer to the schedule of classes to determine availability).

All incoming M.S. students must demonstrate competency in undergraduate probability and statistics, through successful completion of BE 2100, or equivalent courses. If the student fails to show competency, he or she may be required to complete a pre-requisite course in probability and statistics.