ESR 1 – A concept for open evolvable assembly systems

Project description

The project will develop a model for evolvable assembly systems that will define and capture the dynamics of the product-process-system evolution building on previous work such as the PROSA and ADACOR holonic architectures. An integrated architecture for evolvable assembly systems will be developed targeting system adaptation at unit, station and system level. This architecture will be defined through a semantic model at physical, virtual and application layers and through resource object models that describe the physical resources and capabilities (in terms of skills and processes, including legacy systems) as well as the generic function-structure-behaviour interactions at different levels of system granularity. These objects will provide the basis for resource virtualisation and each one will be associated with a real-time intelligent cognitive agent therefore making all individual interactions accessible to self-learning and self-adaptation. Every agent will be able to use a suite of reactive plans that can be selected at run time to achieve the agent's local goals based on their current context. The model will support resource evolution of structure, capability and key performance characteristics by updates to the agent’s plans and synthesis of new global behaviours. These global behaviours will emerge through composition of novel "virtual" agents from the pre-existing "concrete" ones through online coordination protocols. The group of "virtual" agents will be able to collectively achieve the desired target behaviour that none of the "concrete" ones individually knows how to.

Host institution

University of Nottingham (UNOTT), United Kingdom

Planned Secondments


Lead Supervisors

UNOTT - Prof Svetan Ratchev, Dr Brian Logan, Dr Jack Chaplin



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