Design of Reconfigurable Manufacturing System Architectures - Methodology for Low Volume Industry

Project Details


This dissertation presents two novel methodologies, which enables low volume companies to design reconfigurable manufacturing system architectures on two different factory structuring levels.
In order for manufacturers to be able to compete in today's global market, they should be in a position where they are able to rapidly change to the present required functionality and capacity. Such demands can be met by the responsive Reconfigurable Manufacturing System, which has been referred to as the new manufacturing paradigm. However, the transition towards a reconfigurable manufacturing system in low volume industry is largely unexplored. Consequently, two methodologies for Reconfigurable Manufacturing System architecture design for low volume industry is provided in this dissertation. These methodologies enables low volume manufacturing companies to reach increased responsiveness through reconfigurability, which provides them with competitive advantages.
The two methodologies are concerned by architecture design on two interdependent factory structuring levels; machine level and system level. Hence, one of the two methodologies addresses architecture design of Reconfigurable Machines, whereas the second methodology addresses architecture design of the system into which the machines are arranged and interlinked with the specific context of high variety low volume production. The two methodologies has been synthesised based on existing literature on Reconfigurable Manufacturing System design, and subsequently design issues within each design phase has been related to low volume industry. The constituent publications of this dissertation addresses both isolated design issues related to one or a few design phases, and the entire sequence of design phases for architecture design on each of the two system levels.
Design of such Reconfigurable Manufacturing Systems has been scarcely described in literature, particularly in relation to low volume industry. At the same time practitioners in industry have expressed a need for practical guidance to design systems with increased responsiveness. Thus, the origin of the methodologies is based on a specific need in industry and a gap in literature. By applying the methodologies to an industrial case they proved to be practically applicable and the results of applying the methodologies revealed a promising potential of increased reconfigurability to the case company.
Short titleDesign of Reconfigurable Manufacturing System Architectures
Effective start/end date01/09/201401/10/2017

Collaborative partners

  • Hydrema Produktion


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