, Volume 14, Issue 3-4, pp 379-388

Identification of process disturbance using SPC/EPC and neural networks

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Since solely using statistical process control (SPC) and engineering process control (EPC) cannot optimally control the manufacturing process, lots of studies have been devoted to the integrated use of SPC and EPC. The majority of these studies have reported that the integrated approach has better performance than that by using only SPC or EPC. Almost all these studies have assumed that the assignable causes of process disturbance can be identified and removed by SPC techniques. However, these techniques are typically time-consuming and thus make the search hard to implement in practice. In this paper, the EPC and neural network scheme were integrated in identifying the assignable causes of the underlying disturbance. For finding the appropriate setup of the networks' parameters, such as the number of hidden nodes and the suitable input variables, the all-possible-regression selection procedure is applied. For comparison, two SPC charts, Shewhart and cumulative sum (Cusum) charts were also developed for the same data sets. As the results reveal, the proposed approaches outperform the other methods and the shift of disturbance can be identified successfully.