Machining process planning and measurement process planning have long received research attention from industry and academia. Machining and measurement process automation is well established for mass production in today’s manufacturing systems. However, over the years manufacturing systems have evolved in response to many external drivers including the introduction of new manufacturing technologies and materials, the constant evolution of new products and the increased emphasis on quality as well as the escalating global competition and pressing need for responsiveness, agility and adaptability. These external drivers compel the realization of cognitive manufacturing, in which machining and measurement are merged together to form a more informed, more flexible, and more controlled manufacturing environment. In this way, when unforeseen changes or significant alternations happen, machining process planning systems can receive on-line measurement results, make decisions, and adjust machining operations accordingly in real-time. This paper presents a new paradigm of process planning research and outlines the way to reach cognitive manufacturing. An integrated machining and measurement process planning prototype system has been developed and tested with case studies.

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