Impact of additive manufacturing on aircraft supply chain performance: A system dynamics approach

Abhijeet Ghadge, Georgia Karantoni, Atanu Chaudhuri, Aravindan Srinivasan

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)
39 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to assess the impact of additive manufacturing (AM) implementation on aircraft supply chain (SC) networks. Additive and conventional manufacturing spare part inventory control systems are studied and compared, revealing insights into SC performance. Design/methodology/approach: A leading global commercial airline’s SC network data are used to model the research problem. A system dynamics simulation approach is followed, drawing out insights for managers. Findings: A significant improvement in SC efficiency is observed through the implementation of AM, rendering it a worthwhile investment for global SCs. AM helps to balance inventory levels, and increase responsiveness while decreasing disruptions and carbon emissions in the supply networks. Practical implications: The paper offers guidance on the adaption of AM in aircraft SCs and AM’s impact on spare part inventory systems. Originality/value: The study provides robust evidence for making critical managerial decisions on SC re-design driven by a new and disruptive technology. Next-generation SC and logistics will replace the current demand for fulfilling material products by AM machines.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Manufacturing Technology Management
Issue number5
Pages (from-to)846-865
Number of pages20
Publication statusPublished - 2018



  • Additive manufacturing
  • Aerospace industry
  • Performance measurement
  • Simulation
  • Supply chains

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