Flexible Manufacturing System - FMS

DEFINITION of 'Flexible Manufacturing System - FMS'

A method for producing goods that is readily adaptable to changes in the product being manufactured, in which machines are able to manufacture parts and in the ability to handle varying levels of production. A flexible manufacturing system (FMS) gives manufacturing firms an advantage in a quickly changing manufacturing environment.

BREAKING DOWN 'Flexible Manufacturing System - FMS'

While an FMS has many advantages, it may not always be the most cost effective method of manufacturing due to the high cost of developing the system and obtaining sophisticated machinery. An FMS may be able to make up for this high cost with greater efficiency and less down time. For example, a traditional manufacturing system may need to halt if a key machine breaks down. However, an FMS may be able to adapt and keep production going during repairs.

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