(n) The process of identifying items with similar design or manufacturing characteristics. Items with similar characteristics are grouped into part families.
When a factory floor and the products made there are being converted from functionally oriented manufacture (qv) to group oriented manufacture (qv), it may be thought necessary (*) to employ a methodology to find which products should be assigned to which group flow lines. Group technology is just such a methodology, and employs formal methods for describing similarities in manufacturing requirements and simulating the capacity loads on potential group flow lines. (* Richard Schonberger has criticised the use of complex and elaborate methods for determining the arrangement of plant and products, and advocates the simple use of routings data to make rapid progress, followed by straightforward, pragmatic action to iron out any difficulties encountered.)
An engineering and manufacturing philosophy which identifies "sameness" of parts, equipment, or processes. it provides for the rapid retrieval of existing designs and anticipates a cellular type production equipment layout.
An engineering and manufacturing philosophy that identifies the physical similarity of parts (common routing) and establishes their effective production. It provides for rapid retrieval of existing designs and facilitates a cellular layout.
Group Technology or GT is a manufacturing philosophy in which the parts having similarities (Geometry and/or manufacturing process) are grouped together to achieve higher level of integration between the design and manufacturing functions of a firm. The aim is to reduce work-in-progress and improve delivery performance by reducing lead times. GT is based on a general principle that many problems are similar and by grouping similar problems, a single solution can be found to a set of problems, thus saving time and effort.