P-SOP Agent Generator for Flexible Manufacturing

Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Mechanical Engineering book series (LNME)


In a flexible manufacturing industry the production planner may need to make an updated description of the control strategy every day. The description contains all possible routing paths and is based on actual circumstances. It varies depending on, e.g., rebalancing due to market changes, scheduling of available operators, introduction of new parts, and rerouting due to a machine break down or planned service. A Part oriented Sequence of Operation (P-SOP) description language has been formulated to assist the production planner to be able to handle these flexible manufacturing scenarios. Multi-agents to control the manufacturing are automatically generated from the P-SOP description language. The P-SOP agent generator creates IEC 61131-3 PLC code that can be executed on standard PLC’s. An agent consists of a head, a communicator, and a body. The head and the communicator are the automatically generated part with a predefined interface against the physical body, e.g., the mechanical/electrical structure of a robot. This feature eliminates the need for an external expert in PLC programming. The head contains many small sub-sequences for all operations that are defined for the specific body. The purpose of the communicator is to communicate with surrounding neighbor agents to form a multi-agent system. The formulated language and the P-SOP agent generator has been successfully tested and evaluated in an industrial environment.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bo Svensson
    • 1
  • Anders Nilsson
    • 1
  • Fredrik Danielsson
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Engineering ScienceUniversity WestTrollhättanSweden

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