An ontological model and method for obsolescence resolution and management




Zheng, Liyu
Sandborn, Peter A.
Terpenny, Janis
Orfi, Nihal

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DEStech Publications, Inc.


With today's rapid advancement in technologies, commercial high tech components are rendered obsolete more frequently. Such components are often parts of long-life products. Hence, technology obsolescence can make design changes for systems expensive and result in high life-cycle costs. Several tools have been developed to support obsolescence management. While these tools provide benefits and serve as focal points for information related to components, these tools are limited in many respects due to data conflicts, incompleteness and inconsistency. Further, the lack of communication between these tools compounds the limitations making the proactive management of obsolescence even more challenging. This paper addresses gaps in existing tools, by providing a framework capable of integrating heterogeneous sources of information and knowledge that are required to resolve and manage obsolescence. This is implemented through an obsolescence resolution ontological model developed using the ontology editor Protégé. A reasoning method is used to query obsolescence information and resolution strategies to support decision-making. This paper includes two case studies describing results from the application of the ontological model and method and how these facilitate sharing and exchange of knowledge critical to obsolescence management.


Paper presented at the Proceedings of the 24th International Conference on Flexible Automation & Intelligent Manufacturing, held May 20-23, 2014 in San Antonio, Texas, and organized by the Center for Advanced Manufacturing and Lean Systems, University of Texas at San Antonio
Includes bibliographical references


Product obsolescence, Product life cycle, Product management, Ontologies (Information retrieval)