Forthcoming and Online First Articles

International Journal of Manufacturing Research

International Journal of Manufacturing Research (IJMR)

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International Journal of Manufacturing Research (9 papers in press)

Regular Issues

  •   Free full-text access Open AccessReproducible decision support for industrial decision making using a knowledge extraction platform on multi-objective optimization data
    ( Free Full-text Access ) CC-BY-NC-ND
    by Simon Lidberg, Amos Ng 
    Abstract: Simulation-based optimization enables companies to take decisions based on data, and allows prescriptive analysis of current and future production scenarios, creating a competitive edge. However, it can be difficult to visualize and extract knowledge from the large amounts of data generated by many-objective optimization algorithms. We present an open-source, web-based application in the R language to extract knowledge from data generated from simulation-based optimization. For the tool to be useful for real-world industrial decision-making support, several decision makers gave their requirements for such a tool. This information was used to augment the tool to provide the desired features for decision support in the industry. The open-source tool is then used to extract knowledge from two industrial use cases. Finally, further work is also discussed, focusing on further additions to the open-source tool and automatic model generation.
    Keywords: Knowledge-extraction; reproducible science; simulation-based optimization; industrial use-case; decision-support; knowledge-driven optimization.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2024.10057049
  •   Free full-text access Open AccessHow the Characteristics of Small and Medium-sized Enterprises influence Product-Service Systems Design Challenges
    ( Free Full-text Access ) CC-BY-NC-ND
    by Jennie Åkesson, Angelina Sundström, Glenn Johansson, Koteshwar Chirumalla 
    Abstract: Manufacturing companies can contribute to a resource-efficient society by designing product-service systems (PSS). Despite the increased importance of PSS for the manufacturing industry in their efforts to become sustainable, few studies focus on small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The study presented in this article aims to add knowledge on how the characteristics of SMEs influence the challenges SMEs experience when designing PSS. It employs a multiple case study design where data are based on interviews, workshops, and internal archive documents from three contract manufacturing SMEs. The analysis suggests that nine SME characteristics influence the challenges SMEs experience when designing PSS. It also shows that SMEs' different characteristics influence one or more challenges, and that SMEs have a short-term horizon and a reactive business approach which influences the overall challenge of designing PSS.
    Keywords: product-service systems; PSS; servitisation; small and medium-sized enterprises; SME; firm characteristics; challenges; sustainability; manufacturing companies; contract manufacturing.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2024.10057552
  •   Free full-text access Open AccessApproaching digital transformation in the manufacturing industry
    ( Free Full-text Access ) CC-BY-NC-ND
    by Mats Ahlskog, Anna Granlund, Viktorija Badasjane, Jessica Bruch, Barrett Sauter 
    Abstract: In order to support manufacturing companies in their digital transformation, challenges and views of the term digital transformation need to be identified since digital transformation is considered a source of competitive advantages. Therefore, this paper aims to explore the challenges and differing views of digital transformation in the manufacturing industry. A case study was conducted in collaboration with four Swedish manufacturing companies. The results were then mapped into categories of three dimensions (people, process and technology), indicating that digital transformation can have different meanings within a company. We conclude that the term digitalisation is more frequently used in the manufacturing industry than digital transformation and identified challenges relate to lack of best practice for digital transformation, degree of standardisation and therefore affects the workload and limits the possibilities of transferring technical solutions between factories. Our findings are relevant to operations managers and other interested in digital transformation.
    Keywords: production system development; smart production; digitalisation; manufacturing industry; Industry 4.0; knowledge; new competences; degree of standardisation; way of working; organisational structure.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2024.10057606
  •   Free full-text access Open AccessResilient and Sustainable Production Systems: Towards a Research Agenda
    ( Free Full-text Access ) CC-BY-NC-ND
    by Kristina Säfsten, Ulrika Harlin, Kerstin Johansen, Lisa Larsson, Anna Ohrwall Ronnback 
    Abstract: It is widely recognised that manufacturing companies need to pay attention to sustainability aspects to be competitive. However, there is still no clarity on how to combine requirements for sustainability and profitability to achieve long-term competitive manufacturing. Furthermore, there is a need for knowledge on how to develop resilient and sustainable production systems. This paper aims to explore the state-of-the art and state-of-practice associated with the development of resilient and sustainable production systems, with a focus on challenges and enablers. To achieve this, a narrative literature review was carried out, combined with results from knowledge creation workshops with five manufacturing companies striving towards resilient and sustainable production systems.
    Keywords: production system development; circular economy; resilient production; resilience; sustainable production; sustainable work; technology-organisation-people.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2024.10058315
  •   Free full-text access Open AccessFramework for universal design of digital support and workplace design in industry
    ( Free Full-text Access ) CC-BY-NC-ND
    by Sandra Mattsson, Martin Kurdve, Peter Almström, Katrin Skagert 
    Abstract: The aim of this paper is to propose a framework for universal design of manual assembly workplaces. Workplaces that are adapted to different individuals, regardless of gender, language, background and functional variations, also support the fundamental goals of the Industry 5.0 concept and an accessible, safer, productive and error-proof work environment. The study included: 1) a qualitative study on key factors for universal design and comparison with universal design theory; 2) improvement suggestions to the company based on observations, interviews and theory; 3) a framework for universal design. The framework included the following areas: personalisation and context, activities/tasks and output, and methods/standards and factors were suggested so that companies could start their analysis work for the design. The study resulted in new insights and empirics regarding universal workplace design.
    Keywords: Industry 5.0; assembly; inclusive design; universal design; poka-yoke; standards.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2024.10058316
  •   Free full-text access Open AccessSustainability and Circularity in Reconfigurable Manufacturing
    ( Free Full-text Access ) CC-BY-NC-ND
    by Filip Skärin, Carin Rösiö, Ann-Louise Andersen 
    Abstract: Reconfigurability is widely acknowledged as a foundation for achieving sustainable manufacturing, while also being an enabler for establishing circular manufacturing. However, further clarifications of how reconfigurable manufacturing can support sustainable manufacturing are necessary. Thus, there is a need to further investigate how reconfigurability can help companies in achieving sustainable manufacturing and to identify future research directions. In this paper, a literature review was conducted to categorise, describe, and summarise the previously conducted research on reconfigurable manufacturing in relation to sustainability. The literature review was conducted in the database Scopus and 265 papers were initially reviewed. After excluding papers not fulfilling the inclusion criteria, 79 papers were analysed in detail using five different categorisations. Based on these categorisations, the previously conducted research on sustainability and reconfigurable manufacturing was analysed. Several frequently discussed sustainability focus areas were identified and described, as well as suggestions of future research directions.
    Keywords: sustainability; circularity; circular economy; reconfigurable manufacturing; reconfigurability; changeability; RMS; literature review.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2024.10058562
  • Cutting force modeling for peripheral milling with a disk cutter considering instantaneously-engaged area   Order a copy of this article
    by Xinfeng Liu, Riliang Liu, Jiaming Feng 
    Abstract: Peripheral milling process with a disc milling cutter can be used for the manufacture of freeform surface. In this paper, a cutting force model for this milling process is proposed considering instantaneously-engaged area. Firstly, the peripheral milling process with the cutter is described. Secondly, the geometrical and mathematical models of the cutting tools and chip are modelled. To obtain instantaneous cutting forces, three related geometrical parameters including the instantaneous cutting thickness, instantaneously-engaged height of right-side edge and instantaneously-engaged area are defined and solved. Then the cutting force model is established with the cutting force coefficients solved using the data from cutting tests. Finally, series of cutting experiments are performed on H59 brass to verify the effectiveness of the proposed analytical model. The errors in the predicted result are within 5.97%, 8.06% and 16.14% in the x, y and z directions.
    Keywords: cutting force model; peripheral milling; disc milling cutter; cutting edge; instantaneously-engaged cutting area.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2023.10052034
  • Improved mechanical properties of steel/aluminum laser welding joint by Ti powder addition: experimental and first-principles investigations   Order a copy of this article
    by Dianwu Zhou 
    Abstract: The generation of brittle intermetallic compounds (IMCs) need be solved for steel/aluminium welding quality. In this study, Ti powder was selected as interlayer and the experiments of laser penetration welding for steel/aluminium through addition of interlayer were carried out. The effect of adding Ti powder on mechanical properties of the weld was investigated. Experimental results showed that the increased penetration depth was obtained, and the average tensile-shear strength of Ti-added joint was 10% higher than that of No-added joint. First-principle calculations revealed that the effect of reduced brittleness of IMCs with the addition of alloying elements was in accordance with the improved mechanical properties. When Ti powder was added, the grain was small, the layer thickness and brittleness of IMCs decreased, ductile phase Fe2Ti were formed. Hence, mechanical properties of the weld were significantly improved.
    Keywords: laser welding; powder; micro-structure; mechanical properties.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2023.10053013
  • Development of Hybrid Locomotive In-pipe Robot   Order a copy of this article
    by ATUL GARGADE, Saantipal Ohol 
    Abstract: This paper describes the development of an autonomous hybrid locomotive In-pipe Inspection Robot (IPIR) version 4. The novelty of version 4 is its hybrid steering mechanism and stability, maneuverability, mobility, flexibility, and diameter adjustability inside the different pipe elements. The vertical mobility and diameter adjustability of IPIR are improved by optimizing its spring design in such a way that version 4 can pass through 8-inch to 10-inch diameter pipe elements at 0-degree, 45-degree, and 90-degree inclinations. The IPIR version 4 is composed of a front leg system, a back leg system, connectors, and two DC motors. To verify the potency of the steering mechanism, several experiments of version 4 are conducted through basic structures such as straight pipes, couplings, and bends of 8-inch, 9-inch, and 10-inch in diameter. This robot will be utilized for the inspection of water pipelines, gas pipelines, and drain pipes.
    Keywords: Autonomous; bends; couplings; maneuverability; steering mechanism; hybrid locomotive.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJMR.2023.10054117