High value adding VR tools for networked customer-driven factory

Pedrazzoli, Paolo and Rovere, Diego and Constantinescu, Carmen and Bathelt, Jens and Pappas, Menelaos and Dépincé, George and Boer, Claudio (2007) High value adding VR tools for networked customer-driven factory. In: 4th International Conference on Digital Enterprise Technology 4th International Conference on Digital Enterprise Technology, 19.09.2007-21.09.2007, Bath, United Kingdom.

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Current manufacturing systems, the typical instantiations of modern socio-technical systems called factories, have to solve highly complex tasks under increasing demands for adaptability, cost efficiency, maintainability, reliability, scalability and safety. The "Next Generation Factory", approached as a complex long life product, has to be adapted continuously to the needs and requirements of the market. Furthermore the "factory" will have to take more and more into consideration social responsibility and, in particular, environmental sustainability. Based on these challenges the need of breakthrough Virtual Factory (VF) tools for cost-effective and rapid creation, management and use of the Next Generation Factory, in respect of its digital and virtual representation (called further on Virtual Factory), is more and more relevant for the purposes of the European Industrial Transformation. The paper presents a new VF approach coherent with the "Next Generation Factory" meant to advance the capability to simulate dynamic complex behaviour (organizational, engineering, …) over the whole life cycle of Product, Process, Plant and Network, thus fostering major time and cost savings, while increasing performance in the design, management, evaluation and evolution of new or existing facilities. The paper presents the underlying models and ideas at the foundation of this new conceptual framework for the high value adding tools also meant to lay the basis for future works and applications in this research area.

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