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Approach of the Amisa Project

We seek to develop a next-generation technology for model-based architecting of adaptable systems. Such systems will achieve increased cost-efficiencies, reduced production and development cycle times, and longer, more valuable lifetimes. This technology will also be harmonized with relevant Intelligent Manufacturing System (IMS) projects and European standards.
The creation of artifacts adaptable for a succession of upgrades and variations is of great importance to all systems since technology and business environments are likely to change over their lifespan. Figure-1 below shows one example of a manufacturing enterprise architecture. Several raw materials are used to build components, several components are used to build subsystems and several subsystems are used to build the final system or product. Sometimes products are sold to end customers. At other times a manufacturer retains ownership of their products in order to create a revenue-generating service. Most often, manufacturers combine these two approaches.
This conglomerate represents a particular and unique architecture composed of various elements and interfaces distributed in terms of geography, production philosophy, management structure, etc. This conglomerate is very dynamic. Different raw materials replace old ones, components are replaced or combined together, subsystems’ manufacturers change or go out of business, and the final system or service itself evolves over time, as well as the distribution network and customer base.archmanind
Similarly, Figure-2 below depicts the Vetronics (Vehicle electronics) architecture of a Scania truck. This specific architecture was created by way of historical experience and engineering gut-feeling, not by optimizing for adaptability to future, unpredictable needs.
The AMISA claim is that
a more adaptable architecture could significantly increase the lifetime value of a system.
Although various qualitative methods exist to increase the adaptability of systems (e.g. modularity, open systems, interface standardization, etc.), a methodology is lacking to quantify the value and achievable benefits of deliberately incorporating adaptability into system architectures.
The challenge, therefore, is to create theoretical methods to architect manufacturing systems as well as products and services for optimal adaptability. The corresponding challenge is to prove that such a method can be implemented in industry and will in fact lead to substantial lifelong savings.arcvehicleelect