Computer-integrated manufacturing

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CIM , from engl. computer-integrated manufacturing , dt. computer-aided manufacturing and computer-integrated manufacturing is a generic term for various activities in a company are supported by the computer, and therefore also " CAx " together ( computer-aided ... or computer-assisted ... are) .

The components of CIM are:

The technology behind the abbreviations CAD and CAM has been known since around 1965. This is understood to mean computer-aided drawing and construction of products ( CAD ) and the subsequent programming of the machines for product manufacture ( CAM ). The integration can go so far that CAD data is automatically transferred to a CAM system.

In 1973 Joseph Harrington introduced the concept of Computer Integrated Manufacturing. He wanted to emphasize the importance of information in production as well as the synergy potentials when linking the isolated solutions. He spoke of pieces of puzzles , by which he meant the island solutions, such as CAD, NC , CAM, etc., which were used in a company alone, without any EDP connection.

In addition to the large number of isolated solutions, the number of published CIM concepts certainly made implementation more difficult. The authors Meudt, Pohl and Metternich provide a visual overview (images of the concepts as well as a timeline of the times of publication) of the existing concepts.

With a higher degree of complexity and integration, these subsystems are grouped together for the purpose of production automation. This then no longer only includes product creation, but also production planning, production monitoring, resource and project management. This corresponds to the Industry 4.0 model , the all-encompassing inclusion of economic processes in a company in a virtual environment to increase efficiency.

Definition according to CASA / SME

CIM is the integration of total manufacturing enterprise by using integrated systems and data communication coupled with new managerial philosophies that improve organizational and personnel efficiency. (In German, for example: CIM is the integration of the entire manufacturing company through integrated system and data communication paired with a new management philosophy to improve organizational and personnel performance ).

In the early 80s, the CIM Wheel (CIM-Rad) was developed by CASA / SME ( Computer and Automated Systems Association of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers of the United States of America). The main idea was the holistic view of the company based on the CIM. In the center of the CIM Wheel Integrated stands system architecture (integrated system architecture) having a common database (common data) and the information management and communication (information resource management & communication).

On the second level, corporate functions from the areas of factory automation and production planning and control were linked to one another via the components of the integrated system architecture. What was new about this concept was that additional administrative tasks were taken into account on a third level. These were operations management, human resources , marketing , strategic planning and finance . The further development of the CIM Wheel is the Manufacturing Enterprise Wheel . The customer is at the center of this concept.

Definition according to AWF

Definition according to AWF (Committee for Economic Manufacturing, 1985): CIM describes the integrated use of EDP in all areas of operation related to production. It includes the information technology interaction between CAD, CAP, CAM, CAQ and PPS. The aim is to integrate the technical and organizational functions for product creation. This requires the shared use of all data in an EDP system, also known as the database.

The AWF concept is based on the Y-CIM model developed by August-Wilhelm Scheer .

Further definitions

During the high phase of CIM, every manufacturer such as DEC , HP , IBM or Siemens had their own definition. At Siemens, for example, they spoke of CAI ( computer-aided industry ). A comprehensive literature search on the subject of CIM was able to give an overview of the different CIM concepts. A total of 37 different concepts were found, with 20 concepts from Germany and 14 concepts from the United States.

In Japan in particular, CIM projects in the 1980s attempted to completely displace people from the sometimes highly dangerous production plant (the so-called deserted factory ), whereby apparently only simple, rather theoretical prototypes were created due to the complexity of modern industry.

Volker Spanier, Head of Factory Automation at Epson , said in an interview with Production magazine that Industry 4.0 is just a paraphrase for the term computer integrated manufacturing .

A comprehensive presentation of various CIM structural concepts (definitions) can be found in the 1991 guide for entrepreneurs and executives in small and medium-sized companies, "CIM Basic Knowledge for Business Practice".


  • Gunnar Paul : CIM basic knowledge for business practice . Friedr. Vieweg & Sohn Verlagsgesellschaft mbh, 1991, ISBN 3-528-04634-1 .
  • Fiedler, Angela / Regenhard, Ulla: With CIM into the factory of the future? Problems and experiences , Opladen: Westdeutscher Verlag, 1991
  • Jean-Baptiste Waldner: Principles of Computer-Integrated Manufacturing . 1 ed. John Wiley & Sons, 1992, ISBN 0-471-93450-X (English).
  • Yoram Koren: Computer Control of Manufacturing Systems . 1 ed. McGraw Hill, Inc., 1983, ISBN 0-07-035341-7 (English).
  • V. Singh: The Cim Debacle: Methodologies to Facilitate Software Interoperability . Springer, 1997, ISBN 981-3083-21-2 (English).
  • August-Wilhelm Scheer: CIM Computer Integrated Manufacturing: The computer-controlled industrial enterprise (hardcover edition), Berlin: Springer, 4th, neubearb. u. exp. Edition 1990, ISBN 3-540-52158-5
  • Jean-Baptiste Waldner: CIM . 1 ed.Dunod -Bordas, 1990, ISBN 978-2-04-019820-6 (English).
Commons : Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM)  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. a b Meudt, Tobias; Pohl, Malte; Metternich, Joachim: Models and strategies for the introduction of Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM) - A literature review . Ed .: TU Prints [TU Darmstadt - PTW]. TU Prints, Darmstadt July 27, 2017, p. 36 ( ).
  2. Production, July 31, 2012: Industry 4.0 equals CIM? ( Memento of the original from August 7, 2012 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot /
  3. " Gunnar Paul : CIM basic knowledge for business practice . Friedr. Vieweg & Sohn Verlagsgesellschaft mbh, 1991, ISBN 3-528-04634-1 . "