Date of Award

12-2012

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department

Mechanical Engineering

Advisor

Mocko, Gregory M

Committee Member

Summers , Joshua D

Committee Member

Fadel , Georges

Abstract

The design and manufacture of large scale systems, particularly automobiles, is a process that requires collaboration across multiple disciplines. This collaboration is facilitated through efficient and effective data and knowledge storage and transfer. Specifically, the data associated with the final assembly of the vehicle should be generated, organized, and distributed in such a manner that each user of the data is able to use it effectively. Furthermore, the structure for the assembly data should be robust and reliable such that it fosters consistency among various planners for multiple vehicle platforms that are assembled all around the world. This research aims to develop a centralized data structure for assembly planning information that will allow a global automotive production company to create, relate, and store the necessary information for the assembly of multiple vehicle platforms in various locations, performed by associates that speak multiple languages. This is achieved by first observing the existing business processes of the company and identifying which processes are crucial to the production of vehicles, which processes may be omitted, and what processes need to be added. A data model is developed around these processes that allows multiple users to interact with the data as applicable to his or her duties, and a user interface is developed to demonstrate these interactions. The prototype system is demonstrated and validated with respect to the requirements associated with the business processes that need to be accomplished and ease of use.

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