PurposeThe purpose of this paper is to propose a decision support system (DSS) that stabilizes the flow of fixtures in manufacturing systems. The proposed DSS assists decision-makers to reuse or adapt the available fixtures or to manufacture new fixtures depending upon the similarity between the past and new cases. It considers the cost effectiveness of the proposed decision when an adaptation decision is passed.Design/methodology/approachThe research problem is addressed by integrating case-based reasoning, rule-based reasoning and fuzzy set theory. Cases are represented using an object-oriented (OO) approach to characterize them by their feature vectors. The fuzzy analytic hierarchy process (FAHP) and the inverse of weighted Euclidean distance measure are applied for case retrieval. A machining operation is illustrated as a computational example to demonstrate the applicability of the proposed DSS.FindingsThe problems of fixture assignment and control have not been well-addressed in the past, although fixture management is one of the complex problems in manufacturing. The proposed DSS is a promising approach to address such kinds of problems using the three components of an artificial intelligence and FAHP.Research limitations/implicationsAlthough the DSS is tested in a laboratory environment using a numerical example, it has not been validated in real industrial systems.Practical implicationsThe DSS is proposed in terms of simple rules and equations. This implies that it is not complex for software development and implementation. The illustrated numerical example indicates that the proposed DSS can be implemented in the real-world.Originality/valueDemand-driven fixture retrieval and manufacture to assign the right fixtures to planned part-orders using an intelligent DSS is the main contribution. It provides special consideration for the adaptation of the available fixtures in a system.
Journal of Manufacturing Technology Management – Emerald Publishing
Published: Mar 6, 2017