The uniqueness of Reconfigurable Manufacturing Systems (RMSs) is that the structure of the system as well as of its machines and controls can be rapidly changed in response to market changes (demand and products). A major component of RMSs is the reconfigurable machine tool (RMT). By contrast to conventional CNCs that are general-purpose machines, RMTs are designed for a specific, customized range of operation requirements and may be cost-effectively converted when the requirements change. In this paper, systematic design tools that have been recently developed for RMTs are reviewed, and three examples are provided to compare RMTs to traditional types of machine tools.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The authors gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Engineering Research Center for Reconfigurable Machining Systems (NSF Grant EEC95-92125) at the University of Michigan and the valuable input from the Center's industrial sponsors.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Mechanical Engineering
- Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering