International Journal of Product Development (14 papers in press)
- Scalable product platform design based-on design structure matrix and axiomatic design
by Xianfu Cheng, Guangying Lan, Qihang Zhu
Abstract: Product platform design has been recognized as an effective means to establish and preserve competitive status in the market and to maintain the economies of scale and scope, while keeping production costs to a minimum. To this end, a new design method for scalable product platform is presented based on design structure matrix and axiomatic design. Initially in this process, the customer needs are analyzed, and then the common and individual needs are identified. Second, the key functional requirement parameters are extracted and mapped. Next, a design matrix is established. The functional structure decomposition figure and the design matrix are combined for constructing a design structure matrix. Then, an extension clustering algorithm is utilized to cluster the elements, and then common variants and adjustable variants of product platform are recognized reasonable. Afterwards, a product platform design scheme based on a design structure matrix and axiomatic design is determined. Finally, a product platform on electro-hydraulic drum brakes is developed. The results demonstrate the effectiveness and practical value of the new design method.
Keywords: Product platform; Design structure matrix; Axiomatic design; Electro-hydraulic drum brakes
- An approach to integrate numerical simulation within KBE applications
by Giorgio Colombo, Caterina Rizzi, Daniele Regazzoni, Roberto Morotti
Abstract: This paper presents an approach to automate and integrate numerical simulations within Knowledge-Based Engineering applications to improve the use of simulation tools, especially in SMEs. Main discussed issues concern: i) the importance of the CAD model as an input of the process; ii) data migration from CAD to CAE tools; iii) model characterization; iv) effects of parameters variations; v) simulation steps; and, vi) results evaluation. In addition, formalization and representation of rules and procedures to automate the design process, in particular the simulation tasks, are presented. Two case studies are described to explain and verify the approach. The first case concerns the design process of centrifugal industrial fans, during which simulation tools are used to verify the correct sizing of impeller blades. The second one is related to a non-industrial process; actually, it regards a medical device, and more precisely lower limb prosthesis. Finally, main results are discussed.
Keywords: Knowledge-based Engineering, Embedded simulations, Simulation rules, Industrial fan, socket design.
- AUTOMATIC ONTOLOGY GENERATION FROM PATENTS USING A PREBUILT LIBRARY, WORDNET, AND A CLASS-BASED N-GRAM MODEL
by Zhen Li, Derrick Tate
Abstract: An ontology is definedas a structured, hierarchical way for describing domain knowledge. Research work regarding ontological engineering has yielded fruitful results, but these methods share a common drawbackthey require significant manual work to generate an ontology,which limits the usefulness of these approachesin practice. In this paper, we propose a computational model that combines data-mining, natural language processing (NLP), WordNet, and a novel class-based n-gram model for automatic ontology discovery and recognition from existing patent documents. A pre-built ontology library was constructed by gathering knowledge from engineering textbooks and dictionaries.Then a dataset of engineering patent claims was split into training (80%) and validation (20%)subsets. The pre-built library and WordNet were used to generate class labels for constructing class-based n-gram models in a training process.The holdout validation dataset validated the accuracy of the proposed method. The results showed that the average accuracy was 87.26% for all validation samples. The best performance was 89.26% for hybrid vehicle patents, and the worst performance was 85.15% for patents related tocomposite image projectors.
Keywords: ontological engineering, n-gram language model, natural languagernprocessing
- Supporting Decisional Processes in Design: a case study in the Space Industry
by Francesca Montagna
Abstract: The approach proposed in the paper considers a decision perspective on New Product Development (NPD) together with the integration of different domains and tools to support design activities. In particular, it highlights the need for methods and tools that investigate and support the design decision context, improve communication and reduce uncertainty in engineering design situations. The proposed approach has been implemented in a French-Italian space industry company.
Keywords: Design decisions, Engineering management, Decision-Aiding tools.
- IT-enabled Product Innovation: Customer Motivation for Participating in Virtual Idea Communities
by Ulrich Bretschneider, Jan Marco Leimeister, Lars Mathiassen
Abstract: Virtual idea communities (VICs) such as Dells Ideastorm are very popular in practice. In VICs, customers of firms can submit ideas and collaborate to support product innovation. This customer-based ideation is not new per se. Small groups of customers have been brought together in lead user workshops or focus groups since the 80s to support product innovation. However, bringing customers together in VICs represents a new form of IT-mediated ideation with customers. While extant research has provided insights into customers motives for participating in traditional ideation, we know little about the motivations that drive customer participation in this new form of IT-enabled ideation. Based on a survey of customer motivations for participation, we found evidence for motives that arise directly due to the VICs IT-ability to support visualization of customer ideas, to give feedback on ideas, and to support customers social interactions. As a result, VICs are perceived as a way to demonstrate personal capabilities, for getting recognition, and for facilitating social interaction. We discuss these findings in relation to extant research on customer-based ideation.
Keywords: Virtual Idea Community, Open Innovation, Crowdsourcing, Motivation, Ideation, New Product Development, Customer Involvement, Idea Management System
- Investigating a totally digital approach to concept generation during industrial design practice
by Mark Evans, David Cheshire, Eujin Pei, Ian Graham
Abstract: During the professional practice of industrial design, digital methods are used extensively to support the generation, development and specification of creative three dimensional (3D) form. Despite the increasing capabilities of digital methods, the distinctive nuances of current practice continue to require the use of non-digital methods, particularly during the highly creative concept generation activities. This paper reports on a research project that combined emerging and established digital design technologies to define an approach for total Digital Industrial Design (DID) that employed only digital methods (e.g. no pens/paper) with no post-process finishing (e.g. smoothing/painting of rapid prototype parts). To evaluate this theoretical approach, action research was employed in which all phases of DID were used to design two stylistic variations of a consumer product with data collection using a diary through the design process and coded analysis of outcomes. The paper concludes that DID has the greatest potential for change and benefit during the concept generation phase, where haptic feedback modelling and monochrome 3D printing have the capacity to replicate some of the qualities of tactile form-giving that is associated with workshop-based sketch modelling by hand. When integrated with photorealistic visualisation, low fidelity appearance models have the potential to reduce design timescales. To maximise impact, the case study was translated into in a web-based resource (http://www.lboro.ac.uk/microsites/lds/did/) to facilitate understanding of the process and designed outcomes from DID.
Keywords: industrial design, product design, digital design, computer aided design, action research, sketching
- Design tool selecting aid: a neuronal approach
by Khaled Benfriha, Améziane Aoussat, Marc Le Coq
- Sustainability Performance Measurement Framework for Supply Chain Management
by Salinee Santiteerakul, Aicha Sekhari, Abdelaziz Bouras, Apichat Sopadang
- Resonance Testing: An Industry Approach for Experiential Concept Evaluation
by Lassi A Liikkanen
Abstract: This paper describes a professional practice in user-centered product concept design that is embedded in a method called resonance testing. It is a nimble method used and developed in industry to ensure that desired properties of design are communicated to the user through the design. It tests product concepts for emotional and functional design attributes such as personal identification and meaningfulness. In resonance testing, the users of a specified segment experience design artifacts of variable abstraction levels to see how they perceive the qualities of a concept and how it matches their preferences. We find that literature lacks both effective user feedback solutions for early product decisions and discussion of the known challenges for doing that. The paper describes how resonance testing generates qualitative insights, builds confidence in new concepts, and helps designers to develop the right concept for further development. We present two cases studies of utilizing this method.
Keywords: Concept Design; Evaluation Methods; Design Practice; Decision making; User experience; Experience Design; Concept evaluation; Resonance testing
- CONTEXT MANAGEMENT IN COLLABORATIVE DECISION MAKING IN COMPLEX DESIGN PROJECTS
by Marija Jankovic, Julie Stal Le Cardinal, Jean-Claude Bocquet
Abstract: The notion of context seems to be a growing subject in the engineering sciences. Several studies have pointed out the necessity to address the contextual limitations in collaborative design projects. It has been identified as one of the major factors that contribute to inadequate knowledge reuse in design projects. Nevertheless, the definition of the context depends on the subject and the field of application. In this paper, we point out different definitions of the context in artificial intelligence, engineering and cognitive sciences. In this research study we present a proposition for context modelling representing only one part of collaborative decision-making support. The research study presented in this paper is a result of collaboration with one of the French car manufacturers. Within the conceptual model of collaborative decision-making, we propose to integrate the information concerning three different contexts: decision, project and enterprise context. The aim of this model is to help and support the project team in project management.
Keywords: context modelling, collaborative decision-making, new product development, early stages
- Defining 'Functional Products' through their constituents
by John Lindström, Daria Sas, Håkan Lideskog, Magnus Löfstrand, Lennart Karlsson
Abstract: Based on empirical studies combined with a literature review, the paper proposes a comprehensive framework defining Functional Products (FP) through their constituents. The framework adds additional specificity to the literature by identifying and discussing existing and emerging constituents of FP, shedding further light on what is needed to create a long and trustful win-win situation between providers and customers in an FP context.
Keywords: functional product constituents; definition; functional products; IPS²; industrial PSS; product-service systems; win-win situation.
- Managing uncertainty, complexity and dispersion in product development projects
by Glenn Johansson, Kristina Säfsten
Abstract: This paper reports findings from the application of a new method, denoted the Interface Management Method (IMM), for managing uncertainty, complexity and dispersion in product development projects. The method was applied in three commercial projects and evaluated against desired features of product development methods reported in the literature. The findings indicate the potential of the method to support product development teams when facing challenges related to uncertainty, complexity and dispersion as it helps create focus and a dialogue on how to deal with the challenges. The paper also adds to the discourse regarding product development methods by discussing and defining four interrelated concepts: method, tool, procedure and system. Through more precise definitions, the dialogue between academics and practitioners can be refined and lead to better methods, which will ultimately result in improved product development efficiency and effectiveness.
Keywords: product development; uncertainty management; complexity management; dispersion management; case study; interface management method.
- Modular product optimisation to alleviate poverty: an irrigation pump case study
by Patrick K. Lewis, Christopher A. Mattson, Charles D. Wood
Abstract: One potential, high-impact area for modular products is the design of income-generating products for poverty alleviation. Income-generating products have helped millions of people sustainably escape poverty. However, millions of other impoverished people are unwilling to invest in these relatively costly products. Modular products have the potential to reduce/overcome this barrier by enabling a product to incrementally adapt to changes in income potential. In previous work of the authors, an optimisation-based modular product design method was developed. Implementation of this method in the creation of a modular irrigation pump is presented herein. The purpose of this study is to physically validate the ability of the method to identify progressively affordable modular products by comparing the performance of the theoretical and physical prototypes of the pump. Based on observations from this comparison, the authors conclude that the method is a feasible approach to engineering-based poverty alleviation.
Keywords: Pareto traversing; modular products; product design; modular design; multi-objective optimisation; engineering-based poverty alleviation; irrigation pumps; case study; incremental adaptation; income potential.
- Using the parallel output DEA cooperative model to evaluate Thai dried longan exporting supply chain
by Danaitun Pongpatcharatorntep, Nan Liu
Abstract: This paper develops the parallel output DEA cooperative model in order to compare the performance of the Thai dried longan manufacturers which use a dual-channel (the 'Middlemen' and the 'Agents') combination to distribute their product. The method is based on 'an output-oriented approach' to assess the impact of changes in output that affects an overall performance. Thus, it can be used to study the changes in the channel strategy that affects the firm's performance. The results show that the manufacturing firms who have a high overall performance are caused by the higher performance score in the 'Agent' channel than the other firms. The high performance score comes from a strong relationship between production and distribution in the market which leads to the best cooperation. Consequently, the best strategy to improve the chain's performance is to develop relationships between manufacturers in Thailand and the distributors in China market.
Keywords: Thailand; dried longan; parallel output DEA; supply chain performance; data envelopment analysis; cooperative modelling; supply chain management; SCM; dried fuit exports; channel strategy; China.