The expert system applied to the IPM program used analysis and synthesis tools to form models of the material processes. The expert system assisted the knowledge engineer in the construction of the knowledge base. This example illustrated how an expert system can be used in the design stage of manufacturing.
The application of the expert system to the scheduling stage in the paper production industry reduced the scheduling time for a monthly schedule from three days (when done by a human expert) to two hours. This is a significant reduction in time, saving both time and money.
The expert system that is used to control the operation of the blast furnace showed that the system can control the thermal condition of the furnace as well as any human operator. The system was able to recognise the changes in input parameters (eg. water injection), compensate for these changes, and maintain stable operation of the blast furnace.
Expert systems is an emerging technology that is playing an increasingly significant role in manufacturing. The above examples illustrate the application of expert systems to many different stages of manufacturing.