Dimensional quality control remains a challenge in assembly of complex products. Currently dimensional variation control research efforts include tolerance analysis and allocation, fixture layout design, assembly sequence planning, and others, without systematically viewing assembly
as a proxy for a wide range of design decisions to produce final products with least cost, most productivity and best quality. A literature review in current assembly modelling methods shows that a unified data structure has yet to be developed at a preliminary design phase in order to design
product and plan assembly process automatically. This paper serves to develop such a data structure, which captures heterogeneous product and assembly process information available at a preliminary design phase and unifies them in a data structure represented as a hierarchical graph. The graph-based
data structure, on one side, facilitates automatic product design and assembly process planning at the preliminary design phase by utilising research results developed in graph theory, and on the other side, allows easier embedding the assembly model into computer aided design (CAD) software
since they share the similar data structure. The presented graph-based data structure is illustrated by a sport utility vehicle (SUV) side frame assembly.
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graph-based data structure;
Document Type: Research Article
Department of Manufacturing Research and Development, Caterpillar Inc., Peoria, Illinois, USA
Department of Industrial and Information Systems Engineering, Ajou University, Suwon, Korea
International Digital Laboratory, WMG, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK
October 1, 2009
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