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A Validation Study of an Automated Concept Generator Design Tool

[+] Author Affiliations
Cari R. Bryant, Daniel A. McAdams, Robert B. Stone

University of Missouri at Rolla, Rolla, MO

Tolga Kurtoglu, Matthew I. Campbell

University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX

Paper No. DETC2006-99489, pp. 283-294; 12 pages
  • ASME 2006 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 4a: 18th International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology
  • Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA, September 10–13, 2006
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4258-4 | eISBN: 0-7918-3784-X
  • Copyright © 2006 by ASME


The current version of the Concept Generator, an automated mathematically-based design tool, is studied in an effort to validate its general approach and establish research goals for further development. As part of the study, four undergraduate engineering researchers from the University of Missouri-Rolla and University of Texas at Austin execute a qualitative study of the software’s effectiveness at producing useful design solutions. The students engage in several activities designed to test the capabilities of this early version of the software. A report of their results and analyses identifies the benefits and disadvantages of the software (and underlying method) as viewed at this stage of development. Furthermore, the design solution data collected by the undergraduate researchers is analyzed more quantitatively during a post-study investigation. Both the qualitative and quantitative studies indicate that the Concept Generator is a promising first step toward the creation of an effective design tool for the conceptual phase of design. Furthermore, the student reports on their hands-on experiences with the software identify strengths and weaknesses of this early version of the Concept Generator and help establish many avenues for further development of the design tool.

Copyright © 2006 by ASME
Topics: Design , Generators



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