Asee peer logo

A Virtual Factory Approach For Design And Implementation Of Agile Manufacturing Systems

Download Paper |


2010 Annual Conference & Exposition


Louisville, Kentucky

Publication Date

June 20, 2010

Start Date

June 20, 2010

End Date

June 23, 2010



Conference Session

Computers in Education Poster Session

Tagged Division

Computers in Education

Page Count


Page Numbers

15.111.1 - 15.111.12



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Hamed Farahani Manesh Eastern Mediterranean University

visit author page

Hamed F. Manesh received his PhD degree in Mechanical Engineering from the Eastern Mediterranean University, N. Cyprus. He was a Research Assistant and Lecturer in this university from 2003 to 2010. He received his first Master’s Degree in Information Systems and the second in Mechanical Engineering also from Eastern Mediterranean University. Currently, he is involved in a research group, which carries out research and development activities for industry-oriented projects of intelligent manufacturing systems, automation, virtual manufacturing as well as engineering education. He has authored and co-authored various journal and conference publications. His research interests include: virtual reality, CAD/CAM, Multi-agent based manufacturing systems control and automation, robotics, holonic manufacturing systems, agile manufacturing and wireless sensor networks.

visit author page

author page

Dirk Schaefer Georgia Institute of Technology

Download Paper |

NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

A Virtual Factory Approach for Design and Implementation of Agile Manufacturing Systems


Worldwide competition among manufacturing enterprises has acted as a driving force for the design, development and utilization of manufacturing systems with an increased degree of agility. In these regards, Holonic Manufacturing Systems (HMS) are considered an intelligent systems paradigm to meet requirements for agile manufacturing systems. Despite all advantages of HMS, design and implementation of such control systems for real industrial cases is time consuming and requires risky, but careful consideration. While some universities may be able to expose their students to the latest manufacturing systems and technologies, others may not be that fortunate due to the lack of financial resources. Because of this, alternative ways for providing their students with equivalent education and training need to be developed. A potential solution for this issue is the adoption of advanced computer technology to facilitate the provision of flexible manufacturing-related education and training programs. To date, many studies have shown that the use of computers for teaching and training purposes is feasible and rapidly becoming an integral part of the general learning process. This paper presents a Virtual Reality (VR) system tool “VR-HMS” developed for training on design of holonic manufacturing control systems to enhance the development process. The proposed VR system is a safe approach to teaching the operations of HMS, which is well known as a large-scale and complex systems for a number of operational and structural reasons. The VR-HMS allows trainees to self-experience on these systems without the need to work in actual industry.


A side-effect of continuing globalization is that manufacturing is more and more becoming a commodity. In addition, the manufacturing industry has to respond to rapidly changing markets more often and much faster than ever before. The ability to respond to change, predicted or unpredicted, is referred to as agility and the associated industrial paradigm called agile manufacturing. A key goal is to make the manufacturing equipment, associated information systems and control architecture of an agile manufacturing enterprise as responsive to the physical and logical disturbances as possible [1].

Several technologies have been developed to implement agility within manufacturing enterprises, including Flexible Manufacturing Systems (FMS) and Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM) systems. Such systems consist of flexible, programmable manufacturing hardware and information system components. They allow for centralized control of manufacturing-related activities and help to improve the overall integration of design with manufacturing. In addition, they may support production planning and scheduling, enhance product service activities such as maintenance and repair, and furthermore provide a vehicle for manufacturing training and research [2].

Farahani Manesh, H., & Schaefer, D. (2010, June), A Virtual Factory Approach For Design And Implementation Of Agile Manufacturing Systems Paper presented at 2010 Annual Conference & Exposition, Louisville, Kentucky. 10.18260/1-2--15644

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2010 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015