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Flexible Manufacturing System


Aug 02.2017
Flexible Manufacturing System (FMS) is a Manufacturing System with high flexibility and high degree of automation, which is suitable for many varieties and small batch production. Flexibility is the biggest characteristic of FMS, it means the ability to adapt to external environment inside the system. FMS has shown great vitality since its birth. It overcomes the limitation of traditional rigid automatic line only for a large number of production, and shows the adaptability to the automation of multiple varieties and small and medium-sized production and manufacturing. With the increasing urgency of the society for product diversification, low manufacturing cost and short manufacturing cycle, with the advance in microelectronics, computer technology, communication technology, machinery and control equipment, flexible manufacturing technology has developed rapidly and matured. The practical application shows that the flexible manufacturing technology has the following characteristics: it has high flexibility, mechanism and universality; Rapid production, short preparation time, high utilization rate, it can unattended 24 hours continuous operation, high processing quality and stability, low cost, and the same output area is 60% of traditional equipment. Therefore, it is precisely because of the high efficiency and flexible nature of flexible manufacturing technology that it becomes the basis for implementing agile manufacturing, parallel engineering, lean production and intelligent manufacturing system, and it has become the core technology of manufacturing. The FMS is mainly divided into: flexible manufacturing unit (FMC); Flexible manufacturing line (FML); Flexible manufacturing system (FMS).

The main components of a flexible manufacturing system are:

(1) the processing system
The equipment used by the FMS is determined by the categories of the processed artifacts, it includes the main processing center, turning center or CNC (CNC) car, milling, grinding and gear machine tools, etc. It is used to automatically process various processes.

(2) the material system
It is used to realize the automatic supply and loading of workpiece and fixture, as well as the automatic transmission, transportation and storage of the process, it includes various conveyor belts, automatic guide cars, industrial robots and special lifting and lifting machines.

(3) the computer control system
It handles all kinds of information about FMS, and outputs the information required for automatic operation of CNC machine tools and material systems. Generally, the three level (equipment level, work station level, unit level) distributed computer control system is adopted, the unit - level control system (unit controller) is the core of FMS.

(4) the software of the system
To ensure that the FMS can effectively adapt to the management, control and optimization of small and medium-sized multi-breed production. It includes the software for design planning, software for production process analysis, software for production scheduling, system management and monitoring software.
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