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An expert system for process planning of sheet metal parts produced on compound die for use in stamping industries

ABSTRACT

Process planning of sheet metal part is an important activity in the design of compound die. Traditional methods of carrying out this task are manual, tedious, time-consuming, error-prone and experience-based. This paper describes the research work involved in the development of an expert system for process planning of sheet metal parts produced on compound die. The proposed system is organized in six modules. For development of system modules, domain knowledge acquired from various sources of knowledge acquisition is refined and then framed in form of ‘IF-Then’ variety of production rules. System modules are coded in AutoLISP language and user interface is created using visual basic (VB). The system is capable to automate various activities of process planning including blank modeling, blank nesting, determining punch force required, selection of clearance between punch and die, identifying sheet metal operations, and determining proper sequence of operations for manufacturing the part. The proposed system can be implemented on a PC having VB and AutoCAD software, therefore its low cost of implementation makes it affordable even for small scale sheet metal industries.