Title: Connecting factories and related IT environments to manufacturing clouds

Authors: Ursula Rauschecker; Daniel Stock; Matthias Stöhr; Alexander Verl

Addresses: Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA, Nobelstraße 12, 70569 Stuttgart, Germany ' Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA, Nobelstraße 12, 70569 Stuttgart, Germany ' Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA, Nobelstraße 12, 70569 Stuttgart, Germany ' Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation IPA, Nobelstraße 12, 70569 Stuttgart, Germany

Abstract: Cloud manufacturing is an emerging concept related to the management of flexible production networks such as virtual enterprises. It not only suggests management approaches such as service-orientation in manufacturing but also provides solutions for efficient execution of the production network management by means of IT tools. Such tools are in most cases represented by cloud manufacturing platforms to which the managed production facilities are connected. However, when integrating factories and their IT infrastructure to cloud manufacturing environments, considerable effort is necessary to implement appropriate IT interfaces. In order to overcome this issue, this paper suggests a concept for a configurable interface component, i.e. factory adapter, which enables to easily configure and execute data exchange between factory-internal IT systems with manufacturing clouds. Especially small and medium-sized companies as well as enterprises participating in short-term or ad-hoc production networks will benefit from a factory adapter which helps to decrease efforts for IT interface implementation during supply chain integration. [Received 15 November 2013; Revised 2 June 2014; Accepted 29 July 2014]

Keywords: cloud computing; cloud manufacturing; services; capability; data exchange; mapping; information technology; factory security; integration; adaptation; connecting factories; manufacturing clouds; flexible production networks; virtual enterprises; IT infrastructure; IT interfaces; configurable interface components; small and medium-sized enerprises; manufacturing SMEs; factory adapters.

DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2014.066664

International Journal of Manufacturing Research, 2014 Vol.9 No.4, pp.389 - 407

Available online: 27 Dec 2014 *

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