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South African Journal of Industrial Engineering

versão On-line ISSN 2224-7890
versão impressa ISSN 1012-277X

S. Afr. J. Ind. Eng. vol.21 no.2 Pretoria  2010




Reconfigurable product routing and control for mass customisation manufacturing



A.J. WalkerI; G. BrightII

IDepartment of Mechanical Engineering, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa
IIDepartment of Mechanical Engineering, University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa




Reconfigurable control of flexible manufacturing systems can allow for the efficient and responsive production of customised product instances. This can aid in providing make-to-order business models for various small- to medium-sized enterprises in South Africa, and provide competitive advantage in a dynamic global marketplace. Reconfigurable control application requires an understanding of the modes of production variability in mass customisation manufacturing. Temporally uncorrelated workflow routings are considered as one of these production variability modes. In this light, this paper addresses the flexible material payload routing problem, and presents a mobile robot platform that has been developed to research and design reconfigurable routing systems.


Verstelbare beheer van aanpasbare vervaardigingstelsels kan die doeltreffende en reaktiewe produksie van doelgemaakte produkeksemplare toelaat. Hierdie beheer kan assisteer in die voorsiening van vervaardig-na-bestellingbesigheidsmodelle aan 'n aantal klein- tot medium-grootte ondernemings in Suid-Afrika, en aan hulle 'n kompeterende voorsprong bied in 'n dinamiese globale mark. Die instelling van verstelbare beheer vereis dat die modi van produkveranderlikheid in massa verbruikersaanpassingsvervaardiging verstaan word. Hierdie artikel spreek die probleem van aanpasbare roetebepaling van materiaalvragte in massa verbruikersaanpassingsvervaardiging aan. 'n Mobiele robot-platform, ontwikkel vir navorsing in verstelbare roetebepalingstelsels, word ook voorgelê.



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* Corresponding author.
1 The author is a candidate for the PhD degree in Engineering in the Mechanical Engineering Department at the University of KwaZulu-Natal..

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