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Supporting the design of reconfigurable production systems
Jönköping University, School of Engineering, JTH. Research area Industrial Production.
2012 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

To compete, manufacturing companies need production systems that quickly can respond to changes. To handle change drivers such as volume variations or new product variants, reconfigurability is advocated as a competitive means. This implies an ability to add, remove, and/or rearrange the structure of the production system to be ready for future changes. Still, it is not clear how the production system design process can capture and support the de-sign of reconfigurable production systems. Therefore, the objective of this thesis is to increase the knowledge of how to support the design of reconfig-urable production systems. Reconfigurability could be defined by a number of reconfigurability char-acteristics including convertibility, scalability, automatibility, mobility, modularity, integrability, and diagnosability. In eight case studies, reconfigu-rability characteristics in production system design were studied in order to investigate reconfigurability needs, knowledge, and practice in manufactur-ing companies. In three of the case studies reconfigurable production sys-tems were studied to identify the links between change drivers and reconfig-urability characteristics. In the remaining five case studies, reconfigurability in the production system design processes was addressed in terms of needs, prerequisites, and consideration. Based on the literature review and the case studies, support for reconfigu-rable production system design is suggested including two parts. The first part comprises support for analyzing the need for reconfigurability. Based on relevant change drivers the need for reconfigurability must be identified to enable selection of right type and degree of reconfigurability for each specif-ic case of application. A comprehensive view of the reconfigurability charac-teristics is presented and links between change drivers and reconfigurability characteristics are described. The characteristics are divided into critical characteristics, that lead to a capacity or functionality change of the produc-tion system, and supporting characteristics, that reduce system reconfigura-tion time but do not necessarily lead to a modification of functionality or capacity of the production system. The second part provides support in how to consider reconfigurability in the production system design process. A holistic perspective is crucial to design reconfigurable production systems and therefore constituent parts of a production system are described. Accord-ing to their character physical, logical, and human reconfiguration must be considered through the whole production system design process.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Västerås: Mälardalen University , 2012. , 201 p.
Series
Mälardalen University Press Dissertations, ISSN 1651-4238 ; 130
Keyword [en]
production system, production system design, development, reconfigurability
National Category
Mechanical Engineering
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-20306ISBN: 978-91-7485-079-6 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hj-20306DiVA: diva2:591325
Public defence
2012-10-11, Filen, Smedjegatan 37, Eskilstuna, 10:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2013-01-21 Created: 2013-01-21 Last updated: 2013-01-21Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Reconfigurable Production System Design - theoretical and practical challenges
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Reconfigurable Production System Design - theoretical and practical challenges
2013 (English)In: Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management, ISSN 1741-038X, E-ISSN 1758-7786, Vol. 24, no 7, 998-1018 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to explore theoretical and practical challenges to achieve reconfigurable production system designs. Design/methodology/approach – Presented results are based on a multiple-case study involving two industrial companies and in total four production system design projects in which considerations of reconfigurability were studied. Additionally, literature related to reconfigurability and production system design was reviewed.

Findings – For more than a decade foresight reports have pointed out the need for responsiveness to change through reconfigurability in production system design. In order to achieve reconfigurable production systems, three challenges were identified: to use a structured design methodology, to gain knowledge in reconfigurability and its characteristics, and to include the reconfigurability knowledge in a structured design methodology. Still there is no comprehensive support available for reconfigurability in the production system design process.Research limitations/implications – Limitations are mostly related to the chosen methodology approach, and additional empirical studies to establish generic results are required. Practical implications By combining knowledge from the production system design field with the reconfigurable manufacturing system field a potential of meeting identified challenges is pointed out. Originality/value This paper adds to current knowledge by pointing out three main challenges to achieving reconfigurable production systems. The paper also contributes with ideas on how to respond to these challenges.

Keyword
Production system design, reconfigurability, review, challenges, manufacturing industry
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-19340 (URN)10.1108/JMTM-02-2012-0021 (DOI)2-s2.0-84885825915 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2012-09-04 Created: 2012-09-04 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
2. Enabling Changeability in Manufacturing System Design by adopting a Life Cycle Perspective
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Enabling Changeability in Manufacturing System Design by adopting a Life Cycle Perspective
2009 (English)In: Proceedings of 3rd International Conference on Changeable, Agile, Reconfigurable and Virtual Production, 2009, 612-621 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

An industrial need is to develop and operate changeable manufacturing systems that easily can be changed according to customer requirements, production volumes, and new product generations. Such a manufacturing system needs to be developed with the manufacturing footprint in mind, comprising solutions at a conceptual and technical level that can be standardized and duplicated for new geographical locations. This demands the mindset and the incentives of the manufacturing industry to define and implement a life cycle approach when designing, thinking in system generations and recycling of solutions. It requires an integrated development process of the product and the manufacturing system with conscious planning of a ‘manufacturing systems portfolio’ that corresponds to the product portfolio. These are issues addressed in this paper with the objective to investigate available methods or tools for manufacturing system design, how they correspond to the product portfolio, and how they support life cycle perspective.

Keyword
Manufacturing system design, manufacturing system portfolio, changeability, reconfigurability, life cycle perspective
National Category
Other Mechanical Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-10733 (URN)978-3-8316-0933-8 (ISBN)
Available from: 2009-10-26 Created: 2009-10-26 Last updated: 2013-01-21Bibliographically approved
3. Considering reconfigurability characteristics in production system design
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Considering reconfigurability characteristics in production system design
2012 (English)In: Enabling Manufacturing Competitiveness and Economic Sustainability: Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Changeable, Agile, Reconfigurable and Virtual production (CARV2011), Montreal, Canada, 2-5 October 2011 / [ed] Hoda A. ElMaraghy, Berlin: Springer Berlin/Heidelberg, 2012, 57-62 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Production systems must be easy to change in different configurations in order to meet the demands of e.g. changing product volumes and product types. In order to meet the demands efficient support for design of reconfigurable production systems that is easy to apply in an industrial setting is needed. The problem is to get an understanding of how the production system design process can capture and support the design of reconfigurable production systems with technology, organization, and personnel under consideration. The objective of this paper is to describe and define reconfigurability and discuss how reconfigurability characteristics better can be considered in the production system design process. A literature review is made in order to describe the RMS design research and what is characterizing reconfigurability. A case study has also been carried out in order to analyze how the reconfigurability characteristics were considered in a production system design process. The case study motivate a structured and systematic way to consider reconfigurability in the production system design process. A tentative structure of a support to concider reconfigurability in the production system design process is presented.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Berlin: Springer Berlin/Heidelberg, 2012
Keyword
Reconfigurability, Production system design, Mobility
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-16256 (URN)10.1007/978-3-642-23860-4_9 (DOI)978-3-642-23859-8 (ISBN)978-3-642-23860-4 (ISBN)
Conference
4th International Conference on Changeable, Agile, Reconfigurable and Virtual production (CARV2011), Montreal, Canada 2011
Available from: 2011-10-06 Created: 2011-10-06 Last updated: 2016-02-03Bibliographically approved
4. Linking Production Strategy to Production System Specification - a case study
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Linking Production Strategy to Production System Specification - a case study
2009 (English)In: Proceedings of the 3rd International Swedish Production Symposium, 2009, 12-18 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-20304 (URN)
Conference
The 3rd International Swedish Production Symposium
Available from: 2013-01-21 Created: 2013-01-21 Last updated: 2013-01-21
5. The concept of mobile manufacturing
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The concept of mobile manufacturing
2007 (English)In: Journal of manufacturing systems, ISSN 0278-6125, E-ISSN 1878-6642, Vol. 26, no 3-4, 188-193 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

 

It is increasingly important to locate manufacturing activities close to the most relevant competence or the most interesting market. The possibility to easily and quickly move manufacturing capacity is thus becoming more important. Hence, the demand for mobile manufacturing has increased and requires solutions for a quick, rational, and economical reconfiguration of the production system. Within the research project Factory-in-a-Box, the concept of mobile manufacturing has been investigated through the development and implementation of five operative demonstrators. This paper will analyze the concept of mobile manufacturing by presenting the results from the Factory-in-a-Box research project and its demonstrator development. The objective is to clarify when mobile manufacturing capacity can be a proper solution to use as well as to discuss future possible industrial manufacturing applications. The results show that there is a large range of applications for the concept of mobile manufacturing and that two dimensions – the geographical distance and the organizational distance – can be used to classify the mobility within manufacturing systems.

 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier Ltd, 2007
Keyword
manufacturing system, mobility, flexibility
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hj:diva-8681 (URN)
Available from: 2009-05-07 Created: 2009-05-07 Last updated: 2017-12-13Bibliographically approved

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