Title: Simulation driven design of functional products: a tool for evaluation of hardware reliability and maintenance

Authors: Sean Reed; John Andrews; Sarah Dunnett

Addresses: Nottingham Transportation Engineering Centre, Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, NG7 2RD, UK ' Nottingham Transportation Engineering Centre, Faculty of Engineering, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, NG7 2RD, UK ' Department of Aeronautical and Automotive Engineering, Loughborough University, Loughborough, UK

Abstract: Functional products, consisting of hardware and support services, may be leased through performance-based contracts that provide a guarantee of functional availability at fixed costs. This transfers risk from the product supplier to the customer compared to hardware only sales. During functional product development, the supplier must make design decisions that influence both hardware reliability and support service performance. A criterion for comparing design choices that accounts for supplier risk aversion is described, along with a simulation tool that can predict the performance of a product in development. Together these can be used to drive the product design. They are applied to analyse an example functional product and determine optimal design choice for the implementation of measures to improve the reliability of maintenance tasks. The analysis demonstrates the use of the criterion and simulation tool for evaluating design choices during product development. It also shows the possible influence of supplier risk aversion on the optimal design.

Keywords: functional products; product design; product development; hardware reliability; hardware maintenance; simulation; supplier risk aversion; decision support systems; DSS; support services; optimal design.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPD.2013.052157

International Journal of Product Development, 2013 Vol.18 No.1, pp.48 - 67

Received: 30 Aug 2011
Accepted: 02 Jul 2012

Published online: 17 Feb 2013 *

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