Modular Integrated Manufacturing Systems (MISS)

This means they have to increase efficiency in the manufacture of their products, maintain good quality and make reasonable profit just to stay ahead of the others in the game. With this in mind, SMEs is embracing methods of improving manufacturing through different methods among which specialized designing and modular designing. Unlike specialized designing which is customized for a specific SME, modular designing involves the combination of standard components together to form a complete system that functions as desired by the manufacturer. This method offers a variety of options for the SME to choose from since standard components are in abundance in the market, thus making many modular designs available. However, one must research which of the many is best suited for the business. The best way to solve this is developing a Modular Integrated Systems Strategy (MISS) framework to help in the selection. This paper will look at the best way for SMEs to integrate formulation of a manufacturing strategy through MISS.Given that there are several types of modular design methods, only six of them are considered as standard. These include component sharing, component swapping, cut-to-fit mix bus and sectional modularity as illustrated in the figure below.All these forms of modularity are visible in our day to day lives in their simplest forms. Workmen’s tool kits with drills, sanders and jigsaws are one example. In terms of component sharing modularity, these tools are designed to use the same battery pack between them and the drill head being switched for a sander is an example of component swapping modularity. Bus modularity is used in the communication system of telephones through switchboards and cut-to-fit in the tailoring industry for custom fit clothes. The best example of sectional modularity is best brought out by the LEGO ® Company in making blocks that stack in any direction (The Daily Module, 2014).These forms of

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