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Multi-agent based integration of process planning and scheduling

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5 Author(s)
Xinyu Li ; State Key Lab. of Digital Manuf. Equip. & Technol., Huazhong Univ. of Sci. & Technol., Wuhan ; Weidong Li ; Liang Gao ; Chaoyong Zhang
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Traditionally, process planning and scheduling were performed sequentially, where scheduling was done after process plans had been generated. Considering the fact that the two functions are usually complementary, it is necessary to integrate them more tightly so that the performance of a manufacturing system can be improved greatly. In this paper, a Multi-agent-based approach has been developed to facilitate the integration of the two functions. In the approach, the two functions are carried out simultaneously, and an optimization agent based on an evolutionary algorithm is used to manage the interactions and communications between agents to enable proper decisions to be made. To verify the feasibility and performance of the proposed approach, an experimental study has been conducted and comparisons have been made between this approach and some previous works. The experimental results show the proposed approach has achieved significant improvement.

Published in:

Computer Supported Cooperative Work in Design, 2009. CSCWD 2009. 13th International Conference on

Date of Conference:

22-24 April 2009