Project Support System


Contact Information

Robert L. Thorpe
Manager
Space Support Systems & Software
(210) 522-2848
rthorpe@swri.org

The Project Support System (PSS) is a multi-project manufacturing-support web application. It provides manufacturing and quality assurance functions through four major subsystems. It also includes online system management functions:

  • Controlled Stores
  • Document Control
  • Manufacturing Planning Sheets (MPS)
  • Calibrated Equipment
  • Online System Management

As a web application, PSS provides these functions to approved users through any of the latest web browsers, with several user access level options and other user management features available for each subsystem. Additionally, PSS provides functions to export data, interface with corporate systems (such as purchase requisition systems), configure subsystems with project-specific settings, web-based system administration functions, and includes many functions that integrate data in one subsystem with another (for example, calibrated equipment assets, drawings and documents are integrated with MPS functions).

Subsystem Information

Controlled Stores

The Controlled Stores subsystem provides functions to manage purchase requisitions, purchase orders, stock receipt and to issue stock. There are also functions to generate reports, export data, print labels and perform other stock management activities at up to two physical sites. The major features of the Controlled Stores subsystem include:

  • Generate and manage purchase requisitions, track purchase orders
  • Receive stock, manage stock receiving records
  • Mange and search inventory (stock), including barcode search
  • Issue stock, manage stock issue records
  • Perform extensive search functions for all record types
  • Allow role-based access to all functions
  • Generate customized reports, print various types of labels, export data, perform system management functions, review procurement status of ordered items, return items to vendors, issue shipping tickets, manage support tables, and other functions
  • Provide online help for all functions and roles

Controlled Stores Stock Search

Controlled Stores Stock Display

Controlled Stores Purchase Req Add


Document Control

The Document Control subsystem provides functions to manage drawings, Engineering Change Orders (ECOs), documents, and forms. There are also functions to generate reports, export data, and perform other document control activities. The major features of the Document Control subsystem include:

  • Create and manage drawing tracking records, drawing distribution records and ECOs
  • Create and manage ECO records, associate ECOs with drawings
  • Create and manage project document records and document distribution record
  • Create and manage form records and form issues
  • Perform extensive search functions for all record types
  • Allow role-based access to all functions
  • Perform extensive drawing and document revision functions
  • Generate customized reports, print labels, export data, perform system management functions, manage projects, manage support tables and other functions
  • Provide online help for all functions and roles

Note: This subsystem is designed to track documents, drawings and ECOs. The actual “documents” are stored separately. Full document-integration functions — the storage of the documents along with the tracking records — are scheduled for an upcoming release.

Document Control Search

Document Control Display #1

Document Control Display #2


Manufacturing Planning Sheets

The Manufacturing Planning Sheet (MPS) subsystem provides functions to create and manage manufacturing planning sheets (a.k.a. travelers), provide real-time MPS status displays, track part shortages, manage mixtures, and perform many other MPS functions. The major features of the MPS subsystem include:

  • Create and manage MPS records
    • Assign release, operation change and closure approvers
    • Create and manage individual MPS operation steps, including functions to perform (sign), add, edit, void, move, change assigned person or group, perform change review signatures, in-depth mixture management functions, email notifications, record use of calibrated equipment, record supplemental info, and more
    • Create / integrate drawing records
    • Assign project-specific and general procedures
    • Create and manage inspection and non-conformance report records
    • Create and manage as-run test records
    • Create and manage part requests
    • Attach files and management attachments
    • Associate assemblies
    • Create and manage notes
    • Access history tracking records for individual operations and the overall MPS
    • Generate trailer and full MPS PDFs
    • Generate the MPS in XML format
    • Assign special requirements color schemes to MPS's
  • Track MPS record status via real-time displays
  • Search and manage part requests
  • Search and manage inspection records
  • Perform extensive search functions for all record types
  • Allow role-based access to all functions
  • Generate customized reports, export data, perform system management functions, manage support tables and other functions
  • Provide online help for all functions and roles

MPS Search

MPS Display - Approvers

MPS Display - Engineering Drawings

MPS Display - Operations

MPS State Change Diagram

MPS Approval Diagram


Calibrated Equipment

The Calibrated Equipment (CAL) subsystem provides functions to create and manage assets, manage calibration records, manage MPS association records, and other calibrated equipment functions. The major features of the CAL subsystem include:

  • Create and manage calibrated equipment assets
  • Create and manage calibration records for each asset
  • Create and manage MPS association records for each asset
  • Perform extensive search functions for all record types
  • Allow role-based access to all functions
  • Export data, perform system management functions, manage support tables and other functions
  • Provide online help for all functions and roles

Cal Equipment Asset Search

Cal Equipment Asset Display

Adding Cal Equipment to MPS Op


Online System Management

PSS provides many functions to manage users and perform system administration. Major features include:

  • Create and manage user accounts and roles (access levels) for each subsystem
  • Provide functions for users to manage account settings
  • Provide functions for system users to access information on other users
  • Provide system administration functions, including: connection tracking, email queue management, system configuration, extensive audit log search functions and other functions

PSS Login Page

PSS Home Page

PSS Site Map Page

PSS Help Page


Architecture

The core “application” components of the PSS web application are built on the Java platform, known for its ease of development and deployment on multiple platforms, as well as stability and scalability. The extensive libraries included with the Java Development Kit (JDK) include methods for handling network access, database access (via JDBC), file system I/O, multi-threading, and error handling.

There are several web “framework” components that support PSS, including the Apache web server and Tomcat servlet container; both are projects of the Apache Software Foundation and have good reputations in the areas of performance and stability. Any user authentication is performed via LDAP, which can be accomplished with the Sun Java System Directory Server or the OpenLDAP software.

The Oracle database product provides the database framework component of PSS. Oracle is a reliable, maintainable, and scalable database solution for applications hosting a data store. Recent versions have also improved the backup and recovery process, allowing for easy automation of data backup and improved recovery options, as well as improvements to query capability and database virtualization.

All software components, whether built in-house or using existing software, can be deployed on Linux, Solaris or Windows operating systems. These architectures have proven to be stable and easily-maintainable. There is a particularly long term-heritage with Linux and Solaris.

Licensing Information

PSS is available for purchase as a site license. The license fee includes setup, support, training, level-2 technical support and periodic updates to the core PSS software for one year. Minor customer-requested software updates are also included (within the scope of the license fee). The license is for the software only; the customer provides the supporting server, an Oracle database license (any Oracle database edition is supported - SE1, SE or EE), and software setup support for Apache, Tomcat and Oracle. The initial license fee includes level 2 tech support for software setup.

After the first year, PSS maintenance is priced on a per-annum basis, with a discount for purchase of multiple years. Larger customer-requested software updates to PSS are accommodated through a separate agreement.

Prior to authorizing a site-license installation, SwRI will confirm that the export does not violate U.S. law, that the requesting party is not subject to debarment or any other export restriction imposed by any agency of the U.S. Government. This also includes a review of U.S organizations.

Contact for PSS licensing information.

This page describes PSS 5.1.

Related Terminology

web application  •  manufacturing data system  •  project data system  •  controlled stores  •  stock management  •  document control  •  manufacturing planning sheets  •  travelers  •  calibrated equipment  •  non-conformance reports  •  project information management system

Benefiting government, industry and the public through innovative science and technology
Southwest Research Institute® (SwRI®), headquartered in San Antonio, Texas, is a multidisciplinary, independent, nonprofit, applied engineering and physical sciences research and development organization with 10 technical divisions.
05/21/14