Quality-assured setup planning based on the stream-of-variation model for multi-stage machining processes

Jian Liu, Jianjun Shi, Jack J. Hu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations


Setup planning is a set of activities used to arrange manufacturing features into an appropriate sequence for processing. It has significant impact on the product quality, which is often measured in terms of dimensional variation in key product characteristics. Current approaches to setup planning are experience-based and tend to be conservative due to the selection of unnecessarily precise machines and fixtures to ensure final product quality. This is especially true in multi-stage machining processes (MMPs) since it is difficult to predict variation propagation and its impact on the quality of the final product. In this paper, a methodology is proposed to realize cost-effective, quality-assured setup planning for MMPs. Setup planning is formulated as an optimization problem based on quantitative evaluation of variation propagations. The optimal setup plan minimizes the cost related to process precision and satisfies the quality specifications. The proposed approach can significantly improve the effectiveness as well as the efficiency of the setup planning for MMPs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)323-334
Number of pages12
JournalIIE Transactions (Institute of Industrial Engineers)
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2009


  • Multi-stage machining processes
  • Setup planning
  • Variation propagation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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