Scheduling Adaptive Modular Flexible Manufacturing Systems. NWO MasCot Partnership Program.

Smart industry targets high quality, highly productive, customizable manufacturing. Optimizing the productivity of Flexible Manufacturing Systems (FMS) is challenging. Today’s FMS are Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) where productivity depends on the interaction between physical processes, mechanical design and construction, and embedded software and control. Adaptivity and modularity in the FMS design increase flexibility and enable reuse. This improves market potential through product customization and reduces development time and cost through reuse of components and technology. However, adaptivity and modularity complicate optimization of productivity, because design choices and settings for one FMS configuration may not be optimal for another configuration. The SAM-FMS project addresses the challenge of co-designing the mechanical structure and the product flow scheduling of adaptive, modular FMS for optimal productivity. Five specific scientific challenges are investigated:

(SC1) Modular scheduling and design – How to modularize and distribute FMS scheduling?

(SC2) Real-time scheduling and design – How to ensure real-time performance of FMS schedulers?

(SC3) Robust scheduling and design – How to develop schedule(r)s that are robust against variations in operation, configuration, or usage?

(SC4) Parameterization – How to relate and co-optimize structural FMS parameters (such as transport speeds and buffer capacities) and scheduling parameters?

(SC5) Schedule(r) learning – How to learn and evolve schedules and schedulers from operational FMS and schedule data?

The SAM-FMS project will contribute to the development of high-performance, customizable, and robust FMS. The obtained scientific results will be validated in industrial practice.