Ontology-based knowledge representation of industrial production workflow

Chao Yang*, Yuan Zheng, Xinyi Tu, Riku Ala-Laurinaho, Juuso Autiosalo, Olli Seppänen, Kari Tammi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
107 Downloads (Pure)


Industry 4.0 is helping to unleash a new age of digitalization across industries, leading to a data-driven, interoperable, and decentralized production process. To achieve this major transformation, one of the main requirements is to achieve interoperability across various systems and multiple devices. Ontologies have been used in numerous industrial projects to tackle the interoperability challenge in digital manufacturing. However, there is currently no semantic model in the literature that can be used to represent the industrial production workflow comprehensively while also integrating digitalized information from a variety of systems and contexts. To fill this gap, this paper proposed industrial production workflow ontologies (InPro) for formalizing and integrating production process information. We implemented the 5 M model (manpower, machine, material, method, and measurement) for InPro partitioning and module extraction. The InPro comprises seven main domain ontology modules including Entities, Agents, Machines, Materials, Methods, Measurements, and Production Processes. The Machines ontology module was developed leveraging the OPC Unified Architecture (OPC UA) information model. The presented InPro ontology was further evaluated by a hybrid combination of approaches. Additionally, the InPro ontology was implemented with practical use cases to support production planning and failure analysis by retrieving relevant information via SPARQL queries. The validation results also demonstrated that using the proposed InPro ontology allows for efficiently formalizing, integrating, and retrieving information within the industrial production process context.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102185
JournalAdvanced Engineering Informatics
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed


  • Knowledge representation
  • Ontology
  • Production workflow
  • Semantic interoperability
  • System integration


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