Industrial design is a requisite and incontrovertible front-end design for Industrie 4.0 to realize personalization, agility, intelligence, and standardization, so it has very important practical significance to achieve industrial design collaborative workflow flexible management. This paper proposed a hierarchical colored Petri net (HCPN) for modeling the industrial design collaborative system workflow, which aims to provide a valid workflow model for the process management of the industrial design collaborative system. First, it is built the top-level workflow CPN model from product planning, markets research, product design, and product evaluation to prototype production, then the model is extended layer by layer to build the subnet model by the model refinement method. In the model, the activity of the workflow and the activity execution results are represented by the transitions (T) and places (S), respectively. The running state of the whole workflow is represented by the distribution of the token in the places. The token’ color sets expresses the real-time discrete state. By use of the function of token coloring places (S) and the token’ color sets of HCPN, this paper extracts the common characteristics of process knowledge, including markets research results, design ideas, conceptual sketches, design schemes, human resources, and tacit creative knowledge ,then uses the what, when, where, who, and how method to build knowledge information units for specific design event. Thus, realizes the industrial design process knowledge base construction and knowledge acquisition, which provides the necessary information and knowledge resources for the design reuse, flexibility management, and intelligent manufacturing of subsequent products.
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