Figure 1. Ubiquitous assembly cell.
more accurate simulations and reality-based cost estimations and calculations. Real time real data knowledge can be used instead of estimates. The collectible data for these calculations could include, for example, process run times, material consumption, product manufacturing times phase to phase, the load and usage percentage of resources, idle times and time spent in queues, waste and loss of resources, number of defects and quality analysis of output. The generated meta-data also enhances traceability of the products. Some operative possibilities enabled by transparency on the shop floor include real time information about the phase of production and the estimates of throughput time. This is naturally reflected in better tracking of orders and more timely deliveries, as the real time information is used to answer all the queries. Plant-level operative applications can include, for example, automatic calculation of loading, materials management and man-
ufacturing control. Other operative planning actions can include automatic (crude) allocation of resources, work planning optimization, cost and time estimates based on real data instead of speculation and more timely resource usage. The research also included a single demo of a demonstrated ubiquitous assembly cell to portray ubiquitous manufacturing. Visualization of the whole cell can be seen in Figure 1. The example focuses on robot-assisted manual work in which the worker is constantly located with machine vision and instructed according to the location and the phase of assembly. The system assists the worker by indicating which components to collect and from where and how to add them to the assembly. Component picking instructions are shown as component names, pictures and locations, and also indicate the correct picking location with lights. Assembly instructions are shown at the assembly station with an augmented reality application, indicat-
Production matters. VTT in global trends. Kai Häkkinen (ed.)