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Computer-integrated manufacturing
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Manufacturing Systems Integration Program, NIST 2008.
Computer-integrated manufacturing(CIM) is the manufacturing approach of using computers to control the entire production process.[1][2] This integration allows individual processes to exchange information with each other and initiate actions. Through the integration of computers, manufacturing can be faster and less error-prone, although the main advantage is the ability to create automated manufacturing processes. Typically CIMrelies on closed-loop control processes, based on real-time input from sensors. It is also known as flexible design and manufacturing.[citation needed]
Contents [hide]  * 1 Overview * 2 History * 3 Computer-integrated manufacturing topics * 3.1 Key challenges * 3.2 Subsystems in computer-integrated manufacturing * 3.3 CIMOSA * 4 Application * 5 See also * 6 References* 7 Further reading * 8 External links |
[edit] Overview
The term "computer-integrated manufacturing" is both a method of manufacturing and the name of a computer-automated system in which individual engineering, production, marketing, and support functions of a manufacturing enterprise are organized. In a CIM system functional areas such as design, analysis, planning, purchasing, costaccounting, inventory control, and distribution are linked through the computer with factory floor functions such as materials handling and management, providing direct control and monitoring of all the operations.
As a method of manufacturing, three components distinguish CIM from other manufacturing methodologies:
* Means for data storage, retrieval, manipulation and presentation;
*Mechanisms for sensing state and modifying processes;
* Algorithms for uniting the data processing component with the sensor/modification component.
CIM is an example of the implementation of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in manufacturing.
CIM implies that there are at least two computers exchanging information, e.g. the controller of an arm robot and a micro-controller of a CNCmachine.
Some factors involved when considering a CIM implementation are the production volume, the experience of the company or personnel to make the integration, the level of the integration into the product itself and the integration of the production processes. CIM is most useful where a high level of ICT is used in the company or facility, such as CAD/CAM systems, the availability of processplanning and its data.
[edit] History
The idea of "digital manufacturing" was prominent the 1980s, when computer-integrated manufacturing was developed and promoted by machine tool manufacturers and the Computer and Automated Systems Association and Society of Manufacturing Engineers (CASA/SME).
"CIM is the integration of total manufacturing enterprise by using integrated systems and datacommunication coupled with new managerial philosophies that improve organizational and personnel efficiency." ERHUM
[edit] Computer-integrated manufacturing topics

CIM & production control system: Computer Integrated Manufacturing is used to describe the complete automation of a manufacturing plant, with all processes running under computer control and digital information tying themtogether.[3]
[edit] Key challenges
There are three major challenges to development of a smoothly operating computer-integrated manufacturing system:
* Integration of components from different suppliers: When different machines, such as CNC, conveyors and robots, are using different communications protocols. In the case of AGVs, even differing lengths of time for charging the batteries may cause...
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