Structure of a Flexible Manufacturing Protocol for Design and Control of a Vertical Machining Cell
The thesis presented here develops the Flexible Manufacturing Protocol (FMP) for use in CIM (Computer Integrated Manufacturing). The philosophy of the FMP is discussed, as well as the FMP structure. A vertical machining cell was built for automated machining of prismatic parts based on FMP concepts. This cell uses two computers to simulate the responses of cell level components. The system hierarchy and software structure are described in detail as well as the operation schemes. The interfacing/integration problems encountered during the development of the cell are also discussed. An example of how the FMP works with the vertical machining cell is included. The successful demonstration of the FMP-based system capability further reflects the need for FMP and how it is going to benefit the CIM industry.