Keywords: Ontology, Maintenance
TL;DR: Addressing maintenance knowledge representation challenges via ontologies
Abstract: Maintenance is an important technical aspect that must be considered in engineering practices. In this paper we present a preliminary ontological investigation of questions such as “What is a component of an engineering system?” and “What happens when a component is replaced after a malfunctioning?”, which are both fundamental from a maintenance modeling stance. We focus in particular on two inter-related problems, which we call the missing component and the replacement problems. We describe different approaches dealing with them. First, we start representing kinds of components and systems as temporally qualified first-order logic predicates, eventually reified. We then consider a four-dimensionalist (4D) perspective, mainly based on the ISO 15926. Lastly, we briefly mention a novel point of view based on possible worlds. By the end of the paper, we shortly compare the approaches by discussing their advantages and shortcomings.