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Production may involve more than just one task or segment. This is accomplished by including multiple segments into an operation. Remember that segments are the basic tasks. Now we can link multiple segments together into an operation to perform, track and schedule more complicated tasks as shown.
Operation and Associated Segments
Any production or processing that is done tends to involve materials such as the raw materials that go into finished goods. It may also be considered a consumable or by-product that is not directly related to the finished goods. Material definitions are used to define these materials. Consider the following case: if we are assembling an electronic product, then we will have electronic components, including a circuit board, that will each have material definitions. The components will be soldered to the circuit board and will have a material definition for the sub assembly. Next, the circuit board will be added to the housing which will have a material definition that represents it. This will continue until the finished goods are complete. It may even include accessories that are sold with the finished product. Each will have a material definition. Think of this way, in order to know which lots of components were used to make a batch of circuit boards, then material definitions are needed.
Defining production tasks for each specific material is very tedious. A better method would be to organize the material into categories, or class using ISA-95 terms. An example will make this clearer with fewer words. Consider unloading electronic components at a receiving dock. Defining a task to receive each type of component would be a management nightmare. Instead all of the components can be added to an Electronic Component class and when the operator does the receive components task at the dock, it prompts them for the specific component that belongs to the Electronic Components class. Only one Receive Components task has to be defined, which is much easier to manage.
Any production or processing that is done may involves people. Personnel can be tracked and production control over who can start an operation is supported. The person can be automatically selected based on their Ignition login or it can be selected by other means.
MES Person objects are automatically generated from the Ignition users that have first and last names defined. This prevents the default "admin" user from being created in the MES system and showing up in selection lists. When the Sepasoft MES modules first start, the MES Person objects are synchronized and then will be synchronized on a hourly basis thereafter. They can also be synchronized on demand using a script function.
Defining production tasks for each specific person is very tedious. A better method would be to organize the people into categories, or classes in ISA-95 terms. An example will make this clear with fewer words. Consider unloading vinegar at an unloading pump station. If there are ten operators who are qualified to unload vinegar, then creating a Vinegar Unload Operator class containing the ten qualified operators will require just one unload vinegar task definition. Adding an eleventh operator is as simple as adding that person to the Vinegar Unload Operator class.