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Title: Development of a manufacturing engineering system for the motor industry : executive summary
Author: Allchurch, M. J.
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 1998
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Manufacturing Engineering is concerned with converting a product specification into the most appropriate method of manufacture to produce the product to the correct cost and quality. Lack of integration and 'over the wall' engineering between design and manufacturing engineering adds to the time and cost of product development, and has significant effects on the subsequent cost and quality of the product. Because of the size and complexity of manufacturing engineering within the motor industry, the task is often divided between disparate, isolated, departments that traditionally have their own goals and objectives, supported by different business processes and systems. The adverse effects of the lack of integration between design and manufacturing engineering re-emerge within manufacturing engineering itself. As a part of this research, the author analysed the existing information flows through manufacturing engineering within Rover Group, and showed that the business processes and systems generated a high duplication of effort and data, and reinforced functional demarcation between the departments. The new Rover Integrated Manufacturing Engineering System (RIMES) has been developed to address these issues. RIMES has been developed using TQM techniques and evolutionary delivery, new to Rover, to involve the manufacturing engineering customer in all aspects of business analysis and system development. The resultant system deliverables have therefore more closely met the customer requirements and have consequently been implemented with greater customer support. The subsequent changes to manufacturing engineering culture have been promoted from within manufacturing engineering, with the RIMES system acting as a lever for the change. The research has been primarily concerned with the analysis and development of appropriate solutions in three main areas: integration of design and manufacturing engineering, change control procedures to maintain data integrity, and business processes to improve efficiency of manufacturing engineering and the quality of its output. These are all issues that are important for supporting concurrent engineering but were found not to have been adequately addressed, either in the research literature or in commercial systems, for applications involving large, complex products. The new system provides support for the electronic integration of design and manufacturing engineering information, which is based on a technique developed that combines data 'push' and 'pull' principles, and enables the efficient communication of product specification to manufacturing engineering. It provides a single system and repository of manufacturing engineering knowledge, a common fundamental business process, and a common and consistent way of presenting manufacturing engineering information and reports. Concurrent engineering is promoted through early availability of information for downstream processes and strict change control procedures have been developed to maintain data integrity. The previously disparate departments of process engineering and industrial engineering are now working concurrently from the same data which has improved the accuracy, consistency and understanding of information both internally and in external reporting. The time to market has been reduced because product specification information is provided earlier and simultaneously to all manufacturing engineering functions. The manufacturing engineering process and its output have been redesigned. New working methods introduced through the RIMES system have promoted reorganisation and the elimination of demarcation within manufacturing engineering to further facilitate concurrent engineering. Newly designed multi media forms for communication of process information to manufacturing, developed in consultation with the RIMES user community, has promoted team working on the shop-floor.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (D.Eng.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: HD Industries. Land use. Labor