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When all of the activities of the modern manufacturing plants are considered as a whole, it is impossible to think that a small portion might be automated, let alone trying to envisage automation of the whole.

Elements of computer integrated manufacturing systems CIMS

In systems approach, a large and complex system with interacting components are analyzed and improved. The one who assigned with the responsibility of implementation of automation for complex system is advised to implement a technique similar to the traditional systems approach. Following steps are involved in the systems approach:

  1. Objectives of the system are determined.
  2. Structuring the system and set definable system boundaries.
  3. Significant components for a system are determined.
  4. A detailed study of the components is carried out keeping in view the overall integration of the system.
  5. Analyzed components are synthesized into the system.
  6. On the basis of the performance criteria, predetermined system is evaluated.
  7. For continuous improvement, Step “2” to Step “6” are constantly repeated.

Even a small task should be tackled without knowledge of the task objective. This is the key ingredient which, when lacking, causes members of the same team to pull in different directions.

In the factory automation, there could be many possible objectives. One might be to improve the performance of a specific process. Boundary conditions should be limited to that process (as well as other processes that might be affected by increased output, such as material supply and assembly after production).

The other objective might be to minimize cost in a segment of the operation, and to maximize the profit ~ (Clearly it is rare) that such multiple objectives can all be optimized.

Setting system boundaries for a CIM project might be concerned only with the engineering design and actual manufacture of the products. While the integration of these two components is a major task which is not satisfied in most of the facilities, CIM helps to achieve this by going beyond these activities.

“CIM is the integration of total manufacturing enterprise through the use of integrated system and data communication mixed with new managerial philosophies which results in the improvement of personnel or organizational efficiencies”.

As definition stated above, the ultimate goal of CIM is the integration of all the enterprise operation and activities around a common data collection.During this situation, society of manufacturing engineers (SME) introduces the CIM wheel, which gives a clear cut picture of relationship among all parts of the enterprise.

Scope of cad, cam and cim

Fig. Elements of CIM

Outer layer constitutes of general management which includes marketing, strategic planning, finance, manufacturing management and human resource management.

The middle layer consists of three process segments: product and process determination, manufacturing planning and control, and factory automation.

These process segments represent all the activities in the design and manufacturing phase of a product life cycle taking the product from concept to assembly.

The center of wheel represents the third layer which includes information resources management and common database.

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