Digital Twin-driven smart manufacturing: Connotation, reference model, applications and research issues

Yuqian Lu, Chao Liu, Kevin I.Kai Wang, Huiyue Huang, Xun Xu

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

712 Citations (Scopus)


This paper reviews the recent development of Digital Twin technologies in manufacturing systems and processes, to analyze the connotation, application scenarios, and research issues of Digital Twin-driven smart manufacturing in the context of Industry 4.0. To understand Digital Twin and its future potential in manufacturing, we summarized the definition and state-of-the-art development outcomes of Digital Twin. Existing technologies for developing a Digital Twin for smart manufacturing are reviewed under a Digital Twin reference model to systematize the development methodology for Digital Twin. Representative applications are reviewed with a focus on the alignment with the proposed reference model. Outstanding research issues of developing Digital Twins for smart manufacturing are identified at the end of the paper.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101837
JournalRobotics and Computer-Integrated Manufacturing
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Big Data
  • Cyber-physical System
  • Digital Twin
  • Industry 4.0
  • Smart manufacturing
  • Standard

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Software
  • Mathematics(all)
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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