Paper Title
An Ontology BOM for Production Costing

This paper describes an activity-based cost ontology that has been designed for supporting for product family planning where components and module reuses across products are planned to maintain economies of scale. Ontology is a formal specification of domain knowledge and has been used to define a knowledge base for experts who need to share information in a domain of interest. Establishing an activity-based cost ontology will enhance the capture, storage, and retrieval of cost information and facilitates sharing of the common understanding of the role of costs among different types of engineers during product family planning. This ontology includes the concepts associated with resource costs, resource pools, operation activity, tasks, and product family costs, defines the properties of each concept, and represents the relationships among the concepts explicitly. Protégé is used to build the ontology and recode cost information in a consistent manner so that it can be easily assessed across a distributed network and efficiently retrieved for subsequent re-use. The resulting ontological cost model is an initial step toward a knowledge-based costing system for product family planning we are currently developing. An example demonstrates how the proposed activity-based cost ontology can help estimate production costs for a family of products. Keywords - Knowledge-based system, ontology, activity-based costing (ABC), product family planning