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Engineering >> 2019, Volume 5, Issue 4 doi: 10.1016/j.eng.2019.01.014

Digital Twins and Cyber–Physical Systems toward Smart Manufacturing and Industry 4.0: Correlation and Comparison

a School of Automation Science and Electrical Engineering, Beihang University, Beijing 100083, China

b Department of Production Engineering, KTH Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm SE-10044, Sweden

c Department of Mechanical Engineering, National University of Singapore, Singapore 117575, Singapore

Received: 2018-06-28 Revised: 2018-10-09 Accepted: 2019-01-22 Available online: 2019-05-25

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State-of-the-art technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), cloud computing (CC), big data analytics (BDA), and artificial intelligence (AI) have greatly stimulated the development of smart manufacturing. An important prerequisite for smart manufacturing is cyber–physical integration, which is increasingly being embraced by manufacturers. As the preferred means of such integration, cyber–physical systems (CPS) and digital twins (DTs) have gained extensive attention from researchers and practitioners in industry. With feedback loops in which physical processes affect cyber parts and vice versa, CPS and DTs can endow manufacturing systems with greater efficiency, resilience, and intelligence. CPS and DTs share the same essential concepts of an intensive cyber–physical connection, real-time interaction, organization integration, and in-depth collaboration. However, CPS and DTs are not identical from many perspectives, including their origin, development, engineering practices, cyber–physical mapping, and core elements. In order to highlight the differences and correlation between them, this paper reviews and analyzes CPS and DTs from multiple perspectives.


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