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Framework for Generating Modularized Product Designs With Assembly and Variety Considerations

[+] Author Affiliations
Saraj Gupta, Gül E. Okudan

Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA

Paper No. DETC2008-50049, pp. 171-180; 10 pages
  • ASME 2008 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 5: 13th Design for Manufacturability and the Lifecycle Conference; 5th Symposium on International Design and Design Education; 10th International Conference on Advanced Vehicle and Tire Technologies
  • Brooklyn, New York, USA, August 3–6, 2008
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4329-1 | eISBN: 0-7918-3831-5
  • Copyright © 2008 by ASME


Conceptual design is found to be the most ambiguous and creative phase of design. There exist only a few computational tools that aid designers at conceptual design stage, and mostly designers rely on personal experience or experience of coworkers to generate quality designs. The proposed framework aims at generating robust computerized conceptual designs by incorporating Modularity, Design for Assembly (DFA) and Design for Variety (DFV) principles at the conceptual stage. Conceptual design alternatives obtained from the proposed framework are ranked based on minimum assembly time, and are composed of modules in a way that future changes in customer needs are satisfied only by replacing certain modules. The framework involves searching a design repository of components by using functional-basis and pre-defined graph grammar rules, to generate all possible conceptual design alternatives. These design alternatives are ranked and filtered using a DFA index, and top two alternatives are selected. Selected designs are modularized and filtered using a DFV index to obtain the best design alternative. This paper provides a detailed discussion of the framework obtained by amalgamating Modularity, DFA, and DFV. Working of the proposed framework is demonstrated with the help of an electronic toothbrush design example.

Copyright © 2008 by ASME



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