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  • 1.
    Brownlee, Alexander E. I.
    et al.
    University of Stirling, United Kingdom.
    Swan, Jerry
    University of York, United Kingdom.
    Senington, Richard
    University of Skövde, School of Engineering Science. University of Skövde, The Virtual Systems Research Centre.
    Kocsis, Zoltan A.
    The University of Manchester, United Kingdom.
    Conflict-free routing of multi-stop warehouse trucks2019In: Optimization Letters, ISSN 1862-4472, E-ISSN 1862-4480Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    The recent interest in greater vehicular autonomy for factory and warehouse automation has stimulated research in conflict-free routing: a challenging network routing problem in which vehicles may not pass each other. Motivated by a real-world case study, we consider one such application: truck movements in a tightly constrained warehouse. We propose an extension of an existing conflict-free routing algorithm to consider multiple stopping points per route. A high level metaheuristic is applied to determine the route construction and assignment of vehicles to routes. 

  • 2.
    Senington, Richard
    University of Skövde, School of Engineering Science. University of Skövde, The Virtual Systems Research Centre.
    Software containers as a generic foundation for iec 61499 distributed control systems2018In: Advances in Manufacturing Technology XXXII: Proceedings of the 16th International Conference on Manufacturing Research, incorporating the 33rd National Conference on Manufacturing Research, September 11–13, 2018, University of Skövde, Sweden / [ed] Peter Thorvald, Keith Case, Amsterdam: IOS Press, 2018, p. 273-278Conference paper (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    It is predicated that in the future factories will be more dependent upon complex distributed control software, where execution and communication occur at the edge of the system, close to the machines that are involved in the manufacturing process. This introduces the problem of how to effectively design, deploy and manage such systems. The IEC 61499 function block standard has been given as one way to solve this problem, proposing applications made from a number of modular event driven blocks that encapsulate algorithms potentially in any programming language. At the same time the Internet of Things and Cloud computing fields have encountered the similar problem of encapsulating, managing and distributing scalable applications, and have been investigating software containers as a solution. This paper proposes to combine these two approaches using containers to enable easy distribution and management of software modules on manufacturing devices while taking advantage of the IEC 61499 application model to enable an application orchestration tool. It describes the properties of container technology that can support the creation of function block like components and the proposal is supported by a prototype version of such a system which has already been implemented.

  • 3.
    Senington, Richard
    et al.
    University of Skövde, School of Engineering Science. University of Skövde, The Virtual Systems Research Centre.
    Baumeister, Fabian
    University of Skövde, School of Engineering Science.
    Ng, Amos
    University of Skövde, School of Engineering Science. University of Skövde, The Virtual Systems Research Centre.
    Oscarsson, Jan
    University of Skövde, School of Engineering Science. University of Skövde, The Virtual Systems Research Centre.
    A linked data approach for the connection of manufacturing processes with production simulation models2018In: Procedia CIRP, ISSN 2212-8271, E-ISSN 2212-8271, Vol. 70, p. 440-445Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This paper discusses the expected benefits of using linked data for the tasks of gathering, managing and understanding the data of smart factories. It has the further specific focus of using this data to maintaining a Digital Twin for the purposes of analysis and optimisation of such factories. The proposals are motivated by the use of an industrial example looking at the types of information required, the variation in data which is available and the requirements of an analysis platform to provide parameters for seamless, automated simulation and optimisation. 

  • 4.
    Senington, Richard
    et al.
    University of Skövde, School of Engineering Science. University of Skövde, The Virtual Systems Research Centre.
    Pataki, Balazs
    Hungarian Academy of Sciences Institute for Computer Science and Control, Budapest, Hungary.
    Wang, Xi Vincent
    KTH Royal Institute of Technology.
    Using docker for factory system software management: Experience report2018In: Procedia CIRP, ISSN 2212-8271, E-ISSN 2212-8271, Vol. 72, p. 659-664Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    As factories become increasingly computerised, and with the increasing interest in Cyber-Physical-Systems and the Internet-of-Things, the issues of software management, deployment, configuration and integration are expected to become increasingly important. This paper reports on the ongoing experiences of using the Docker container technology in a major EU research project targeting smart factories. Docker is used to distribute, deploy and manage the configuration of multiple software modules between multiple teams and demonstrator sites in multiple locations, where each module can use its own mixture of protocols, programming languages and platforms.

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