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Content archived on 2024-04-19

Intelligent Control and Integration of Manufacturing Systems


The main objective of the proposed NOE in "Intelligent Control and Integration of Manufacturing Systems" (ICIMS) is to pool together and enhance the human and material resources of leading research and academic institutions as well as all related industries, aiming at the creation of an infrastructure that will allow the coordination of research and development, provide the leadership for new research directions, efficiently disseminate the new knowledge and help the effective training of professionals and students alike. The long term industrial goal of the NOE ICIMS is to develop and contribute the necessary tools so that an Adaptive Intelligent Factory (ADIF) become a reality in the long run of 10-12 years. The distinct feature of ADIF would be the effective linkage of intelligence and integration.

Most complex manufacturing systems and many natural processes are of a distributed nature and are characterised by the interaction of many agents trying to solve a variety of problems. In these systems, each agent has an individual, local view of the problem, and at the same time must successfully interact with other subsystems and agents in order to find global solutions to the problems posed. One of the difficulties in both the design and the understanding of distributed Complex Manufacturing Systems comes from the lack of central controls and the conflicting, uncertain, incomplete and delayed knowledge from the agents.

Although there has been considerable progress in theoretical as well as applied research in developing isolated "islands of excellence" in the areas of systems controls and integration of systems, relatively little has been developed in the evaluation of the global behaviour of these systems as they are scaled up to deal with more realistic problems. This is an important issue since the individual agents must not only be designed to cooperate with each other, but also to adapt appropriately to global consequences of their actions (holonic systems). Thus, it is required that considerable basic and applied research in this area be undertaken as well as coordinated in order to develop the necessary generic tools which will enable the design of future Complex Manufacturing Systems in which "Intelligent Control" and "Integration" will be the central factor.


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Participants (55)