Fault-Tolerant Control and Management of Production Systems


Project 2349

Keywords fault-tolerant systems, flexible manufacturing systems, CIM system implementation, sensors


Start Date: 17-JAN-89 / Duration: 48 months

[ contact / participants ]


Objectives and Approach

The objective of this project is to develop a system technology for the efficient integration of monitoring and diagnostics with the control of discrete parts manufacturing plant at the machine and cell level. This has the aim of providing the plant with a degree of fault tolerance through improved control during abnormal or fault conditions.

Taking as its example the European automotive industry, the project will extend the concepts and techniques already defined by ESPRIT project 504. The flexible machining cell test bed established by that project will be further developed as a research and educational tool, particularly for the industrial users and system vendors who will play a key role in the specification of generic requirements.

The principal tasks to be addressed are:

Enabling Technologies
A toolkit of hardware and software modules will be developed for use alongside existing modules to provide the monitoring, diagnostic and action planning functions of a fault-tolerant system.
Application Tools and Methods
Support tools will be provided covering feasibility studies, investment justification, system installation, operation and enhancement, etc.
Integration Methods
Integration methods will be defined which will be compatible with users' current and future manufacturing control systems.
Industrial Application Demonstrators
It is planned to implement at least three demonstrator sites within plants operated by the industrial partners, incorporating the tools and methods appropriate to the demonstration of fault-tolerant control concepts in each environment. It is hoped that at least one site will extend the system implementation to include end-of-line testing using the same generic hardware, software and reporting strategies as will be used for the production machinery.

Exploitation

Although the project is focused on metal working in the automotive industry, the tools and methods developed will be widely applicable to a range of processes in many other manufacturing industries.

The project results are being commercialised with systems and design services sold into the aerospace and automobile industries. Commercial exploitation based on the project's hardware and software modules has extended into new areas including: a gas turbine monitoring system; an integrated workstation for simulation and planning of cutting processes; and an end of line test system for automobile gearboxes.

The design of three industrial demonstrators of "fault tolerant control" has been completed. All the systems are based on a common set of modules which are now being installed on machining cells in the factories of Peugeot, Citroën and Pegaso. These demonstrators will provide the opportunity for a full evaluation of the technology by the host sites, and by European industrialist who will be invited to visit the sites.

One key feature of all the sites is the use of force sensitive hydrostatic spindles. These provide cutting force sensing of a quality never seen before in a production environment, and will support the most advanced types of cutting process monitoring - helping industry to optimise cutting speeds and cut costs.


CONTACT POINT

Mr Piet Ephraim
STEWART HUGHES LTD
School Lane, Chandlers Ford
UK - EASTLEIGH S05 3YG
tel: + 44/ 703-270-027
fax: + 44/ 703-270-007

Participants

STEWART HUGHES LTD - UK - C
ADERSA - F - P
IKERLAN - E - P
PEGASO/ENASA - E - P
PSA - F - P
MANDELLI SPA - I - P
AMTRI - UK - P


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Project 2349, December 1993


please address enquiries to the ESPRIT Information Desk

html version of synopsis by Nick Cook