A manufacturing model to support data-driven applications for design and manufacture
This thesis is primarily concerned with conceptual work on the Manufacturing Model. The Manufacturing Model is an information model which describes the manufacturing capability of an enterprise. To achieve general applicability, the model consists of the entities that are relevant and important for any type of manufacturing firm, namely: manufacturing resources (e.g. machines, tools, fixtures, machining cells, operators, etc.), manufacturing processes (e.g. injection moulding, machining processes, etc.) and manufacturing strategies (e.g. how these resources and processes are used and organized). The Manufacturing Model is a four level model based on a de—facto standard (i.e. Factory, Shop, Cell, Station) which represents the functionality of the manufacturing facility of any firm. In the course of the research, the concept of data—driven applications has emerged in response to the need of integrated and flexible computer environments for the support of design and manufacturing activities. These data—driven applications require the use of different information models to capture and represent the company's information and knowledge. One of these information models is the Manufacturing Model. The value of this research work is highlighted by the use of two case studies, one related with the representation of a single machining station, and the other, the representation of a multi-cellular manufacturing facility of a high performance company.