Application of faceted classification in the support of manufacturing process selection

Matthew Giess, Christopher McMahon, I D Booker, D Stewart

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (SciVal)


Engineering designers are required to consider many factors concurrently when evolving a design, one such factor being the manufacturing process by which the product Will be realized. The selection of such a process involves filtering available processes according to the current design situation, and providing detailed information describing this subset of processes such that the engineer may further refine the design. The approach described in this paper allows an engineer to browse documented manufacturing process information through a faceted classification (FC) system. Where traditional hierarchical classifications are notably viewpoint-dependent, an FC essentially comprises concurrent classification schemes (facets). A designer may browse within and across any combination of facets of interest and make selections at any given level of granularity. The use of a classification scheme provides a degree of abstraction, useful when certain process capabilities may not be directly expressible as parameters. A software environment, Waypoint, has been developed which assists in the construction and population of the faceted scheme, supports the designer in browsing, and through which relevant documentation may be identified and retrieved. The approach is demonstrated upon process descriptions obtained from an engineering textbook, although it may be applied to any given document corpus.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)597-608
Number of pages12
JournalProceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part B: Journal of Engineering Manufacture
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2009


  • manufacturing process selection
  • faceted classification
  • information management


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