Int. J. of Information Technology and Management   »   2014 Vol.13, No.2/3

 

 

Title: Integrating virtual and physical testing to accelerate the engineering product development process

 

Authors: Khadija Tahera; Chris Earl; Claudia Eckert

 

Addresses:
Department of Engineering and Innovation, The Open University, Walton Hall, MK7 6AA, UK
Department of Engineering and Innovation, The Open University, Walton Hall, MK7 6AA, UK
Department of Engineering and Innovation, The Open University, Walton Hall, MK7 6AA, UK

 

Abstract: Testing is essential in developing a successful complex engineering product. System level integration and testing can use between 35% and 50% of development resources. External factors such as legislation and customer requirements drive essential testing whilst internal factors such company experience, affordability and organisational practice profoundly affect the overall testing plan. The main objective of this paper is to understand how testing is integrated into the product development process and how different types of testing are scheduled across the stages of product development. The paper reports a case study in a diesel engine company where the balance of virtual and physical testing is a key concern in reducing design time and cost. Integrating physical and virtual testing is more than process optimisation of time and cost. It contributes to recasting the design process in response to changes in customer requirements as well as to design changes which arise during testing. The importance of dependencies across components, subsystems and tests is highlighted using a model using design structure matrices and the advantages of integrating physical and virtual testing are analysed particularly in facilitating task overlap to reduce product development duration.

 

Keywords: physical testing; virtual testing; analysis; product development process; engineering design; dependencies; dependency structure matrix; DSM; complex products; engineering products; diesel engines; design process; customer requirements; design changes.

 

DOI: 10.1504/IJITM.2014.060307

 

Int. J. of Information Technology and Management, 2014 Vol.13, No.2/3, pp.154 - 175

 

Date of acceptance: 05 Sep 2013
Available online: 09 Apr 2014

 

 

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