Required parameters for modelling heterogeneous geographically dispersed manufacturing systems

Mark Goudswaard, Chris Snider, Martins Obi, Lorenzo Giunta, Kautsar Ramli, Jennifer Johns, Ben Hicks, James Gopsill

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COVID-19 and global crises/events are driving governments to rethink their national manufacturing strategies. The drastic change of societal conditions has exposed our reliance on a constrained set of production practices. Furthermore, the future manufacturing landscape indicates - supply chain crises, trade agreements and natural disasters - a high level of volatility which requires a response that is far from being achieved.

While these emergent challenges have called the efficacy of established practices into question, new manufacturing technologies, such as Additive Manufacturing (AM), present the capability to provide a solution. One proposal is agent-based brokering of AM which could be a method for tackling local, regional, national, and international production needs. However, to achieve the reality of brokered AM, it is imperative that the diversity of AM capability is considered. Diversity that existing homogeneous modelling of AM and manufacturing systems rarely consider or capture. This paper conceptualizes the reality of AM systems and elucidates parameters that are necessary for successful modelling and subsequent co-ordination. Having presented the required parameters the paper continues to discuss requisite levels of abstraction, suitable performance metrics and the role of humans in agent-based manufacturing systems.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1545-1550
JournalProcedia CIRP
Publication statusPublished - 26 May 2022

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