An implementation of resource-negotiating agents in telemanufacturing

Terence L. Van Zyl, Elizabeth M. Ehlers, Emil Marais

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The paper reports on the original concept of introducing Resource-Negotiating (RN) agents into telemanufacturing. Human users submit a design file that they want manufactured. The machine that will be selected to manufacture the design file has to fall within the user's constraints. An agent visits several processing facilities called Distributed Manufacturing Resources (DMRs) and negotiates with an agent at each location for the most suitable machine. The agents use a plan to find resources and use negotiation skills to acquire the most suitable manufacturing resource. The entire process is done in a secure environment as the design files could contain valuable information such as early prototypes of products. Experience gained from the negotiations should be stored to allow future agents to benefit from previous negotiations. The components that are needed to implement the above and the results of the implementation are discussed in this paper.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)115-135
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Product Development
Issue number1-2
Publication statusPublished - May 2010


  • Layered manufacturing
  • Mobile agents
  • Rapid prototyping
  • Resource-negotiating agents
  • Secure resource negotiations
  • Telemanufacturing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Business and International Management
  • Economics and Econometrics
  • Strategy and Management
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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