Shorter life time cycles of products, increasing workpiece variety and declining lot sizes demand for a closed processing chain which enables the economic production of variable products in the future. A new type of manufacturing concept for the production of the 21st century is lined out by the design of an "Autonomous Production Cell." Applied to and designed for manufacturing with laser radiation this concept shows completely new ways in comparison to former manufacturing procedures. The manufacturing processes in the Autonomous Production Cell start with a production oriented design and planning of the manufacturing procedure is including sensor controlled processing of the workpieces with integrated quality management. The quality management detects failures in the manufacturing procedure and allows back-coupling to any preceding step by means of a multistage cascaded production controller. In comparison to former concepts the user is at all times integrated into the manufacturing procedure. The user can add his own competence and creativity. At the same time he is being relieved by routine work and gets adequate help by the system in corresponding situations. The design of the components of the Autonomous Production Cell (design and planning tools, networking of sensors and actuators, user interface, etc.) has been performed as general as possible. This offers the possibility to transfer this concept with countable efforts to all the manufacturing with laser radiation such as welding, cutting, surface treatment, freeforming, rapid prototyping, etc.