Section: Scientific Foundations
The performance evaluation and systems sizing aspect is very important for both application domains. Indeed, the research in this field is connected to the developments of discrete event systems. It is often caricatured by the rivalry between analytical methods and simulation. Some recent results allow to get rid of this rivalry and to make analytical methods and simulation complementary. Thus we develop analytical methods on the basis of simulation to evaluate and optimize systems producing goods and services. A new dimension in this research is the simultaneous consideration of the imperatives of production and the maintenance policies as well as the implementation of relevant indicators. Other research topics such as the study of hybrid systems (Discrete Event Systems and Continuous Systems) could be mentioned. In order to avoid dispersion of our research energy, these systems will not be approached on a short term but may be studied if the opportunity appears (i.e. industrial contracts) and if the human resource potential of the project allows.
COSTEAM project falls under the INRIA topic entitled "Numerical systems - Control and complex systems". It aims at proposing solutions and participating in knowledge advancement related to design, evaluation and management of discrete systems producing goods or services. The research goal is resolutely dual, giving top priority to fundamental research on one hand but always keeping in mind industrial applications on the other hand. On the short-term, we will thus focus on well-identified problems of design, performance evaluation, systems optimization, maintenance policies definition, and also optimization of e-procurement. Thanks to this experience, the aim on the long-term (5 years and more) is to develop a systematic method to design and analyze systems producing goods or services based on modeling and formal specifications of the structure and control of these systems, like software engineering does. The COSTEAM project takes benefits from the activities of the "Systémes de production (SdP)" team of the "Laboratoire de Génie Industriel et Production Mécanique" (LGIPM), common to ENIM, ENSAM-Metz and University Paul Verlaine of Metz. Most of its members belonged to the former MACSI project of INRIA.
The COSTEAM project is built on concrete industrial needs which concern problems of design, management and optimization of systems producing goods or services. Our research activity relies on conventional tools like operational research, Petri nets, perturbation analysis and others for solving problems encountered in designing and managing systems producing goods and services. These tools are the foundation for developing new methodologies more adapted to the industrial applications and the research challenges we are facing.