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Finding Breakthrough Points in Platformed Product Family Design

[+] Author Affiliations
Kohei Arai, Kazuya Oizumi, Kazuhiro Aoyama

The University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan

Paper No. DETC2015-47238, pp. V01BT02A042; 10 pages
  • ASME 2015 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 1B: 35th Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Boston, Massachusetts, USA, August 2–5, 2015
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division, Computers and Information in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-5705-2
  • Copyright © 2015 by ASME


In product development, a design parameter, which designers can change directly, often has an adverse effect on several function metrics, which are indices that describe the product performance. This phenomenon is called a “tradeoff.” Traditionally, tradeoffs are considered for a single product. However, in recent years, there have been tradeoffs between several products because of communal design parameters in platform-based product family design. This problem makes it difficult to determine the point at which a technological innovation is profitable.

In this paper, the point where designers make a technological innovation is defined as a breakthrough. A method is suggested to find the effective breakthrough point for a product family. A model was developed that shows the relations between design parameters and function metrics from a quality function deployment (QFD) to comprehensively estimate the effectiveness of a technological innovation. As an example application, a prototype system was developed and applied to searching a solar boat product family for breakthrough points. The results showed that the proposed method effectively supports the decision-making of product designers.

Copyright © 2015 by ASME
Topics: Design



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