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A microfactory refers to a small dimension factory able to produce small dimension products. The term was proposed by the Mechanical Engineer Laboratory (MEL) of Japan in 1990.[1] The microfactory main advantages are to save great amount of resources like space, energy, materials and time.[2]

Due to its reduced dimensions, microfactories should be highly automated. It might contain automatic machine tools, assembly systems, quality inspection system, material feed system, waste elimination system, a system to evaluate tool deterioration and a system to replace tools.[3]

At least one proposed microfactory is being designed to make many of its own parts, i.e., is a partially self-replicating machine.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Makoto Tanaka, Development of desktop machining microfactory. Riken Review N. 34 Focused on Advances on Micro-mechanical Fabrication Techniques, April, 2001. Available in the WEB at http://www.riken.go.jp/lab-www/library/publication/review/pdf/No_34/34_046.pdf
  2. ^ Yuichi Okazaki, Nozomu Mishima, and Kiwamu Ashida. Microfactory - concept, history, and developments. Journal of Manufacturing Science and Engineering, pages 837–844, 2004. Available in the WEB at http://scitation.aip.org/getabs/servlet/GetabsServlet?prog=normal&id=JMSEFK000126000004000837000001&idtype=cvips&gifs=yes
  3. ^ Ernst Kussul et al. Development of micromachine tool prototypes for microfactories, Journal of Micromechanics and Microengineering, V. 12. N. 6. November 2002. pp.795-812. Available in the WEB at http://www.iop.org/EJ/abstract/0960-1317/12/6/311
  4. ^ Koch, Michael D. "Utilizing emergent web-based software tools as an effective method for increasing collaboration and knowledge sharing in collocated student design teams". 2010. p. 39: Cubespawn.

External references[edit]