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Heterogeneous Modeling as a Basis for Improving the Reliability of Product Concepts

[+] Author Affiliations
Tim Sadek, Michael Wendland, Daniel Meuris

University of Bochum, Bochum, Germany

Paper No. IMECE2011-62086, pp. 441-450; 10 pages
  • ASME 2011 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 9: Transportation Systems; Safety Engineering, Risk Analysis and Reliability Methods; Applied Stochastic Optimization, Uncertainty and Probability
  • Denver, Colorado, USA, November 11–17, 2011
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5495-2
  • Copyright © 2011 by ASME


The importance of the early design stages in a new product development for a successful outcome is well known. Reliability is a key property that can be identified as a major success factor for customer satisfaction. Therefore, it is necessary to ensure a reliability-oriented design process. Regarding the early design phases, several problems are identified in this paper. Insufficient methodical support, as well as a lack of knowledge and high uncertainty due to the use of new technologies, form major barriers for designers to create reliable products. This paper describes a combined modeling approach for reducing uncertainty and identifying potential failure modes in early design phases. Based upon “heterogeneous concept modeling” (HCM), a new method called “inverse functional modeling” (IFM) for identifying non-intended functions and non-intended physical effects is introduced. This novel approach is then evaluated by analyzing the reliability of an actuator based upon shape memory alloy, which represents a new technology inducing uncertainty. In addition, a computer-based tool is developed to allow the practical application of the described modeling approach and further aid the designer in creating reliable products.

Copyright © 2011 by ASME
Topics: Reliability , Modeling



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