(Dr. Farrokh Mistree, advisor)
"Designing Open Engineering Systems in a Distributed Environment"
There exist numerous heterogeneous software tools on the Internet that help in the development of a product. The question then is - How can these distributed heterogeneous software tools (available assets) be used as web services to realize a product in today’s distributed product realization environment? The answer to this question lies in making these available assets accessible over the Internet so that they can be made a part of any product realization process irrespective of their geographical location.
In this thesis, we use XML to represent information at every stage of the design process. This includes representation of requirements for the product to be manufactured, representation of web services that would be used to design the product and representation of information at different stages in the design process. Appropriate web services are selected for realizing a product using utility theory for selection. The selected web services are then executed using server programs to invoke events in a distributed framework. These concepts are implemented in Web-DPR (Web based Distributed Product Realization) – a distributed product realization environment in which available assets are used as web services. Web-DPR is tested through two case studies – design and manufacture of a robot arm and design of a beverage merchandiser and verified using design and software validation techniques.