The objective of COMPLAN is to develop an integrated system for concurrent process planning, scheduling and shop-floor control based on non-linear plans (ie process plans containing manufacturing alternatives) for small-batch manufacture of mechanical parts.
The following modules will form the COMPLAN system:
- a process planning oriented CAD/CAPP Programming Interface will provide the required direct coupling to a wide variety of CAD-systems and provide technical and geometric information
- an existing semi-automatic process planning system (running in 40 companies) and an existing expert shell for automatic process planning of a limited workpiece spectrum (EP 2457) will be adapted and merged to form a single planning environment allowing the generation of non-linear process plans. It will be integrated with a graphical editor for non-linear process plans (EP 2457)
- a process plan evaluator which will allow the process planning module to consider both actual and forecasted workshop loading information during the generation of non-linear process plans and during just-in-time process planning. Furthermore it allows manufacturing alternatives to be assessed with respect to times, costs, and technical validity
- a workshop control system, based on non-linear process plans will be integrated with the process planning system
- a production evaluator evaluates the quality of a schedule and determines the workshop performance in the past. The evaluation results will support and control both process planning and scheduling.
A pilot demonstration and evaluation are foreseen by a machine tool company (LVD) acting as a pilot end-user. The results will be incorporated in products marketed by vendor consortium members.