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Document Type

Open Access

Degree Program

Mechanical Engineering

Degree Type

Master of Science (M.S.)

Year Degree Awarded

2012

Month Degree Awarded

February

Keywords

Semantics, Ontologies, Knowledge Capturing

Abstract

Techniques for the industrial implementation of emerging semantic technologies are presented in this research. Every new design, project, and procedure within a company generates a considerable amount of new information and important knowledge. Furthermore, a tremendous amount of legacy knowledge already exists within companies in electronic and non-electronic formats. All of this generated knowledge results in the need for tools and techniques to represent, structure, and reuse this knowledge. Researchers have spent considerable time and effort developing semantic knowledge management systems, with anticipation that these tools will address these knowledge management needs. However, little has been done to implement these systems within an industrial setting.

In this thesis, we identify five main requirements for the development of an industry-ready, semantic knowledge management system, and we discuss how each of these requirements can be methodically addressed. The five requirements include the incorporation of legacy information, the ease of new knowledge management software adoption, the robustness of the software to support multiple file types and allow for the sharing of information across platforms, the security of the stored information, and the ease of use of the user interface. In collaboration with Raytheon, a defense and aerospace systems company, we developed and demonstrated a novel approach for the successful adoption of semantic abilities by a commercial company. Salient features of this work include a new tool, the e-Design MemoExtractor Software Tool, custom designed to mine and capture company information, a Raytheon-specific ontology extension to the e-Design Framework, and a novel semantic environment in the form of a customized semantic media wiki SMW+. The advantages of this approach and the associated research issues are discussed in the context of the industrial case study with Raytheon.

First Advisor

Ian R. Grosse

Second Advisor

Sundar Krishnamurty

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