Traditionally, design and manufacturing activities have taken place sequentially rather than simultaneously leading to inefficient and time consuming iterations between design and manufacturing stages. In order to expedite these iterations, manufacturability analysis systems (MASs) have been developed to allow the evaluation of various manufacturability aspects during the design stage and consequently to reduce the costs and time to market of the designed products. The definition, concepts, advantages of the MAS and its current state of development and applicability in the industrial environment are discussed in the introduction of the paper. Then, key issues and technologies related to the construction of a MAS such as methodologies applied in data input mechanisms, techniques for manufacturability reasoning and formats of the outputs generated by MASs are analysed. Furthermore, applicability of a MAS to various manufacturing processes and aspects such as manufacturability and fixturability indices that can be analysed and produced through a MAS are also commented. Disadvantages and limitations emerged from utilisation of MASs are critically analysed and presented. Finally, the paper concludes with discussion and suggestions for some prospective research trends and challenges in building and exploiting MASs. Particular attention is paid to the application of a MAS to micro-manufacturing processes on which, nowadays, both academics and industry are focusing their attentions for identifying future research and technological challenges and opportunities.
- Expert system in MAS
- Manufacturability analysis system
- Manufacturability assessment and reasoning
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Strategy and Management
- Management Science and Operations Research
- Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering