Forthcoming articles


International Journal of Product Lifecycle Management


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International Journal of Product Lifecycle Management (10 papers in press)

Special Issue on: Lifecycle Management of Product-Service Systems and Smart Products

  •   Free full-text access Open AccessUsing design rules to guide the PSS design in an Engineering Platform based on the Product Service Lifecycle Management (PSLM) paradigm
    ( Free Full-text Access ) CC-BY-NC-ND
    by Claudio Sassanelli, Giuditta Pezzotta, Fabiana Pirola, Roberto Sala, Antonio Margarito, Mariangela Lazoi, Angelo Corallo, Monica Rossi, Sergio Terzi 
    Abstract: In the recent years, Product Service Systems (PSSs) and smart products are surging in the market and acquiring a strategic role for companies survival. Their relevance is constantly pushed by technological progress, increased customers demand for always different functionalities and manufacturers need for improving their position on the market. Manufacturers, compelled towards the transformation process into PSS providers, have to face the challenge of building up knowledge for successfully providing such complex solutions, also resorting to the help of more effective IT systems and tools. The need to adopt a collaborative design platform, typically used in product engineering processes, is starting to be raised also in the PSS context, since manufacturing companies often have a lack of knowledge for providing PSS. This work, grounded on a combination of Lean and DfX-based theories, is aimed at contributing to improve the knowledge formalization and sharing with the support of IT tools. In this sense, a tool able to manage PSS design knowledge, the Lean Content Design Guidelines and Rules generated and referring to the Design for Product Service Supportability (DfPSSu) approach, is proposed. Finally, to fully exploit design knowledge through a structured engineering workflow, the Lean Design Rules tool (LDRT) is integrated in a more holistic engineering environment able to interact with Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) systems.
    Keywords: Product Service System; PSS; PSS design; Design for X; DfX; Knowledge Management; Lifecycle Management; Lean Design; DfX tool.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJPLM.2018.10011567
  • Mobile apps for providing Product-Service Systems and retrieving feedback throughout their lifecycle: A robotics use case   Order a copy of this article
    by Dimitris Mourtzis, Ekaterini Vlachou, Vasilios Zogopoulos 
    Abstract: In an era when the usage of mobile devices is expanding, it is important for product services to also follow this path. The connectivity and the fast and seamless data exchange supported by modern networks allows companies to come closer to their customers and provide a set of product services that improve product experience and provide meaningful feedback throughout products lifecycle. Towards that direction, this research work presents the combined use of an Augmented Reality maintenance support service and a product service feedback gathering mobile application connected through a cloud database. A Product Lifecycle Management tool is also used to store and analyze the data from the feedback tool. The developed apps aim to support manufacturing companies to provide added value solutions and evaluate them also during their lifecycle. The developed system is validated in a case study from the robotics industry.
    Keywords: Product- Service Systems; mobile applications; design; customer feedback gathering; remote maintenance; robotics industry.

  • Towards a method compendium for the development of digitized products - findings from a case study   Order a copy of this article
    by Manuel Holler, Matthias Herterich, Christian Dremel, Falk Uebernickel, Walter Brenner 
    Abstract: The pervasive infiltration of digital technology into physical products brings both tremendous challenges and opportunities to original equipment manufacturers. With the goal to support the initial stages of the product lifecycle, this article introduces a method compendium for the development of digitized products. More precisely, the compendium suggests (1) customer- and user-centric innovation methods, (2) agile and prototyping methods, (3) system and architecture modelling methods, (4) feedback- and data-driven methods, and (5) service and business modelling methods. Methodically, we draw on secondary data from a longitudinal single-case study scrutinizing the development of digitized trucks at a leading materials handling and intralogistics organization. Bounded to the business-to-business context of industrial equipment manufacturing, we enrich product lifecycle management with methodological contributions valuable for academia and practice alike.
    Keywords: product development; product design; method; methodology; digitized product; smart product; case study;.

  • Towards (pro-)active intelligent products   Order a copy of this article
    by Thorsten Wuest, Tim Schmidt, Wei Wei, David Romero 
    Abstract: Intelligent product research and applications are progressing rapidly. This development driven by the advances of ICT technology, product lifecycle focus, product-service systems (PSS), cloud computing, social network services, in short, the abundance of communication means and (user) data. Despite this rapid development, intelligent products are still rather passive in nature. In this study, we aim to investigate the future direction of intelligent products. The central research question is whether intelligent products are becoming more (pro-)active and/or socially active with subsequent questions regarding associated requirements and demands, barriers and challenges and information needs. To answer these questions, we conducted guided expert interviews and qualitative content analysis. The results indicate that the direction of intelligent products is moving towards a more (pro-)active future. We discuss how this new development is contributing to smart manufacturing as well as PSS design and operation and suggest an extension of two classification models for intelligent products.
    Keywords: intelligent products; smart products; product service systems; PSS; product lifecycle management; PLM; embedded intelligence; intelligent systems; internet of things; IoT; smart manufacturing.


Regular Issues


  • Comparison of Shipbuilding and Construction Industries from the Product Structure Standpoint   Order a copy of this article
    by Conrad Boton, Louis Rivest, Daniel Forgues, Julie R. Jupp 
    Abstract: The use of Building Information Modelling (BIM) across the construction industry can be compared to the use of Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) in manufacturing industries. Previous research work has shown that it is possible to improve BIM with the features and the best practices from the PLM approach. This article provides a comparison between the PLM and BIM from the standpoint of the Bill of Materials (BOM) and Product Structure (PS). It compares the product beginning of life in both construction and shipbuilding industries in order to state how these two industries are comparable. The research then tries to understand the use, form, and evolution of Product Structure and BOM concepts in shipbuilding with the aim of identifying equivalent notions in construction. Research findings demonstrate that similar concepts for structuring information exist in construction; however the relationship between them is unclear. Further research is therefore required to detail the links identified by the authors and develop an equivalent central structuring backbone as found in PLM platforms.
    Keywords: BIM; PLM; Product Structure; Bill of Materials; BOM; Shipbuilding; Construction.

  • User Behaviour in AR-BIM Based Site Layout Planning   Order a copy of this article
    by Abhishek Raj Singh, Venkata Santosh Kumar Delhi 
    Abstract: Construction Site Layout Planning (SLP) is an essential task to decide on the layouts for temporary facilities. The conventional processes utilize two dimensional (2D) paper based medium for collaboration and coordination among various stakeholders of a project to decide on such allocations. In the present study, an Augmented Reality enabled Building Information Model (AR-BIM) based framework is developed for SLP and an experiment has been conducted to understand the user behaviour in the new platform. It is observed that the AR-BIM enabled better collaboration among team members. Further, the teams responded well to new information and constraints in a better fashion. The study highlights how an enhanced three dimensional (3D) visualization, as provided by AR-BIM platform improved the communication among planners and shifted the focus from solution search in the conventional process to understanding of future implications of the layouts proposed. Thus the study highlighted the benefits of AR-BIM based SLP in terms of better visualization, enhanced collaboration and better utilization of the experience.
    Keywords: Augmented Reality (AR); Building Information Modelling (BIM); AR+BIM; Site Layout Planning (SLP); Stakeholder Collaboration; Team Coordination; Visualization.

  • Changing information management for product-service system engineering: customer-oriented strategies and lessons learned   Order a copy of this article
    by Alexander V. Smirnov, Nikolay Shilov, Andreas Oroszi, Mario Sinko, Thorsten Krebs 
    Abstract: Modern markets force companies to implement new production and marketing paradigms. Companies striving for attracting and retaining customers see service provision as a new path towards profits and growth. However, efficient management of product life cycle for such solutions requires significant changes both in business processes and in information systems. The paper investigates the problem of product-service system engineering information management in a customer-oriented way and the way it has been solved. It shares the vision of the authors of the required improvements in business processes and information systems at the considered company related to life cycle management for product-service system configurations. Though the research results are based on the analysis of one company, the presented work can give significant input to achieve benefits for component manufacturers that tend to become system vendors in general.
    Keywords: product-service system; customer view; application view; information management; business process; information system.
    DOI: 10.1504/IJPLM.2018.10012695
  • Simulated dynamic finite-element experiments and automatic assembly synthesis for mechanical design automation   Order a copy of this article
    by Iraklis Chatziparasidis, Dimitrios Giagopoulos, Nickolas S. Sapidis 
    Abstract: Engineering-to-order (ETO) companies encounter two major issues greatly affecting them: 1) often, customers request products that exceed a company's previous experience. In this case, these companies are usually proceeding with experiments, using full scale prototypes, to validate a new design; 2) significant time is required for the product to be designed and fully engineered. To present a framework addressing both these issues, we introduce: a) a method that uses finite-element (FE) models and simulated dynamic experiments to deduct new design rules, instead of performing experiments with full scale prototypes; b) a CAD system based on the automatic assembly synthesis model (AASM) that automatically synthesises the final CAD model. The present framework also contains a specific methodology for validating finite element models regarding accuracy for simulated dynamic analysis. Using this framework, a company's design rules can be enriched by simulated experiments, expanding this company's Knowledge Based Engineering (KBE) system.
    Keywords: finite element modelling; simulated dynamic experiments; design automation; automatic assembly synthesis; assembly features; assembly model.

  • Value creation for lifecycle based product development through the sustainable half-life return model   Order a copy of this article
    by K. Daniel Seevers, Fazleena Badurdeen, I.S. Jawahir 
    Abstract: In product development, many organisations struggle to create a value proposition that can overcome the headwinds of technology change and regulatory requirements, while satisfying the longer term goals of sustainability. Current product development business models focus on financial return on investment, in the form of a narrow definition of the time value of money. This often leads to the lost portfolio value and the lack of visibility to sunk costs over the entire product lifecycle. This paper presents a value creation framework for three dependent stakeholders (consumers, producers and socio-environment) through the creation of the sustainable products value proposition and the half-life return models. These models integrate the time value of resources into the product delivery process, and show that shareholder value can be enhanced by improving the product design process and extend the life of product platforms.
    Keywords: sustainable value creation; product design; product half-life; PHL.

  • A new framework for modelling schedules in complex and uncertain NPD projects   Order a copy of this article
    by Evan Murphy, Ann Ledwith, Farhad Panahifar 
    Abstract: Producing reliable schedules for new product development (NPD) projects can be difficult. The uncertainty involved in NPD and the complex relationships between project tasks leads to task repetition. This results in project schedules that are not linear and cannot be predicted using traditional methods. This paper presents a new modelling approach that aims to provide a more accurate and process specific representation of NPD project schedules. The approach was developed in an industrial case study company and addresses the challenges they face producing accurate schedules for their NPD projects. The proposed approach uses a set of process specific variables rather than the subjective iteration probabilities used by earlier approaches. This results in more reliable project schedules accounting for specific project variations. In this paper, a novel approach for the modelling of NPD project schedules using the underlying drivers of iteration is proposed. Using this method helps to produce more accurate schedules for complex and uncertain NPD projects
    Keywords: new product development; NPD; iteration; uncertainty; scheduling.