A semantic framework for sustainable factories

Walter Terkaj, Ludovico Danza, Anna Devitofrancesco, Stefano Gagliardo, Matteo Ghellere, Franca Giannini, Marina Monti, Giulia Pedrielli, Marco Sacco, Francesco Salamone

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


The world's energy consumption has doubled over the past 40 years and it is estimated that one-third comes from industry. Therefore, an increase of the efficiency in energy use in industries would greatly benefit the sustainability of the factories and consequently of the whole environment and society. A factory is a complex entity constituted by possibly networked plants which produce a set of products performing several processes requiring a set of production resources. All these aspects need to be considered as a whole especially is sustainability is of concern. However, this need implies the collaboration between several actors and tools having remarkably different competences and scopes. This paper presents a holistic framework, named Sustainable Factory Semantic Framework (SuFSeF), aiming at integrating digital models and tools to support the design and management of a sustainable factory thanks to its complete virtual representation. This framework extends the Virtual Factory Framework (VFF), outcome of a European research project, by characterizing the industrial building and considering energy and environmental sustainability of the factory during its lifecycle. Both commercial and prototypal software tools can be integrated in the framework. Specifically, the attention will be focused on tools to support the sustainability assessment during the factory design phase, 3D design tools, and the monitoring of the key energy-environmental indicators during the factory operating phase.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)547-552
Number of pages6
JournalProcedia CIRP
StatePublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes
Event47th CIRP Conference on Manufacturing Systems, CMS 2014 - Windsor, ON, Canada
Duration: Apr 28 2014Apr 30 2014


  • Data modelling
  • Life cycle analysis
  • Sustainable factory
  • Virtual factory

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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