The focus of this thesis is to show the utility of Microsoft's' .NET framework in developing and implementing a MES system. The manufacturing environment today, more than ever, is working towards achieving better yields, productivity, quality, and customer satisfaction. Companies such as DELL are rapidly outgrowing their competition due to better management of their product lifecycles. The time between receiving a new order to the time the final product is shipped is getting shorter. Historically, business management applications such as Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) systems and Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems have been implemented without too much importance given to the operational and shop floor needs. The fact is that these business systems can be successful only when they are properly integrated with real-time data from the shop floor, which is the core of any manufacturing set-up. A Manufacturing Execution System or a MES is this link between the shop floor and the top floor. MESA international defines MES as "Systems that deliver information enabling the optimization of production activities from order launch to finished goods" Thus, a MES provides the right information to the right people at the right time in a right format, to help them make well-informed decisions. Thus, a necessity for an efficient MES is high capability of integration with the existing systems on the operational level. This is where Microsoft's' VS.NET fits in. Microsoft defines .NET as "A set of software technologies for connecting information, people, systems and devices". The vision of .NET is to enable the end user to connect to information from any place at anytime, using any device and in a manner that is independent of the platform on which the service is based. The building block of the .NET framework is the Common Language Runtime or CLR, which is capable of converting data from its original format into a format understandable to .NET and then use that format to interface with its client. This feature that .NET provides holds the key in the context of a MES development and implementation. The aim of this applied research is to design a MES using VS.NET to control the working of a Flexible Manufacturing System (FMS) namely CAMCELL. The architecture used for the MES will then be gauged against an MES implementation done previously using a Siemens' PC-based automation technology and Visual FoxPro. This study will integrate the Siemens' technology with the .NET framework to enhance the resulting MES efficiency. The shop floor details or the real-time data collection will be done using the databases from WinCC and data aggregation and manipulation will be done within the .NET framework. The software architecture used for this study will achieve vertical integration between the CAMCELL ERP layer, the MES layer and the Control layer. The study will demonstrate how the data stored in a high level ERP database can be converted into useful information for the control layer for process control and also how real-time information gathered from the control layer can be filtered into useful information up to the ERP layer to facilitate the decision making process. VS.NET user interface screens will be proposed to support these activities. The performance of the proposed architecture will be compared to that from previous studies, thus benchmarking VS.NET for the implementation of the MES.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Flexible manufacturing systems; Microsoft .NET Framework; Benchmarking (Management)
Industrial and Systems Engineering (MS)
Department, Program, or Center
Industrial and Systems Engineering (KGCOE)
Rege, Amit S., "Benchmarking VisualStudio.NET for the development and implementation of a manufacturing execution system" (2004). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
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