Failure mode and effect analysis (FMEA) in mechanized harvest of sugarcane billets

ABSTRACT The quality control is used for the evaluation of processes and products, and it is important to detect and reduce variability and in operations management can be applied in mechanized harvesting of sugarcane billets. In this sense, this study aimed to identify critical quality indicators and, if necessary, to develop a continuous improvement plan for harvest of sugarcane billets. For the survey and definition of critical quality indicators the FMEA (Failure Mode and Effect Analysis) was applied, after the formation of the quality technical team. Evaluations of the collected variables were through control charts of individual values and the process capability indexes. There are 8 critical quality indicators in the billets harvesting process; the cutting height, the damage index, the percentage of non-viable buds and operating speed have greater importance for analysis due to the risk priority index and the easiness of obtaining data for analysis. The development of the improvement plan aims to reduce the variability due to crop billets, thus, making it able to perform the operation within the required quality standards.