In today’s manufacturing systems, robots and material handling facilities flexibly circulate and integrate material flows among distributed, automatic production equipment. Robots and material handling facilities provide two important and unique capabilities into manufacturing systems: (1) dynamic and mixed material flows, and (2) flexible relationships between manufacturing systems and their environment. The first capability is based on the reprogrammability and intelligence of modern material handling devices and robots. Hence, the material flows are changeable rather than fixed. In parallel, because customers, competitors, and suppliers expect the availability of such an integrated and flexible manufacturing system, the second capability is developed.
KeywordsMaterial Flow Assembly Line Flexible Manufacturing System Material Handling Execution Trace
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