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New Product: Brooks Software enhances FACTORYworks to interoperate at enterprise-level on Windows

18 September 2006 | By Mark Osborne | Product Briefings > Fab Management

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BrooksProduct Briefing Outline: Brooks Software, a division of Brooks Automation, has added a wide range of new functionality to its manufacturing execution system (MES) applications. ‘FACTORYworks', its core MES offering, has been enhanced significantly and is now available on the Microsoft Windows platform. ‘300works', an MES offering for highly-automated fabs has also been enhanced. The new functionality will, according to the company, improve productivity and make it easier to interoperate with enterprise-level applications.

Problem: Intelligent and interoperable plant floor applications are a requirement for today's manufacturers. Discrete manufacturers are looking for competitive advantage through improved performance across their global supply networks. The semiconductor industry has proven that full-featured MES solutions are critical to achieving the level of productivity required to effectively manage complex plant floor operations and drive bottom-line profitability.

Solution: Brooks has been working with Microsoft to extend the key FACTORYworks functionality to the ‘Windows' technology platform to help customers lower their total cost of ownership and integrate more easily - without compromising on performance, security and reliability. Using the Microsoft ‘Windows' platform helps manufacturers to gain significant real-time visibility into their plant floor operations, while maintaining operational performance. The new Work Order Management module allows manufacturers to create a production work order directly from customer order information contained in the ERP system. When used in conjunction with the EI Hub, the Work Order Management module maintains real time connectivity to the ERP system. The MBOM module defines where the parts will be consumed in the manufacturing process (the build profile), stores as-built configurations (ABC) and tracks the entire component genealogy through the manufacturing process. The Inventory Management module allows the ERP system to pass bills-of-material to the MES, thereby eliminating duplicate manual entry. The inventory module tracks consumable material on the shop floor. Nonconformance for Manufacturing module creates issues and tracks all nonconforming work in process (WIP), inventory and MBOM throughout the manufacturing process. A web-based client with a powerful workflow engine allows operators to place material on hold until a disposition is issued. The integration of ‘Business Objects' reporting tool technology allows users to create detailed, drill-down reports based on their top key performance indicators (KPIs).  

Applications: 200mm and 300mm fabs.

Platform: FACTORYworks now incorporates an industry standard message bus based on JMS. JMS reduces the costs of integrating disparate systems through its open standard interface and supports existing IT systems and new technologies such as J2EE and .NET.

Availability: July 2006 onwards.

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