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Incorporating Field Effects Into Modular Architecture Methods

[+] Author Affiliations
Kevin Otto

Robust Systems and Strategy, Taunton, MA

Katja Hölttä-Otto

University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, North Dartmouth, MA

Paper No. DETC2010-28780, pp. 543-551; 9 pages
doi:10.1115/DETC2010-28780
From:
  • ASME 2010 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference
  • Volume 5: 22nd International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology; Special Conference on Mechanical Vibration and Noise
  • Montreal, Quebec, Canada, August 15–18, 2010
  • Conference Sponsors: Design Engineering Division and Computers in Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4413-7 | eISBN: 978-0-7918-3881-5
  • Copyright © 2010 by ASME

abstract

Prior research on methods and algorithms to create modules and modular architectures deal with minimizing interactions between modules and increasing the commonality between products. While these approaches are a good start and provide good suggestions for preliminary architecture, these algorithms ignore the fact that some design solutions cannot be placed in regions of high heat, high pressure, high magnetic fields, etc. The exclusion of such field effect constraints often results in architecture clustering algorithms forming impractical solutions. In this paper, we introduce a field based definition of modularity constraints that incorporate these practical embodiment considerations. We demonstrate the method via examples and a detailed case study in medical device industry. We find that the field based module definitions not only bring the constraints of fields to the attention of the designer, but it also enables new creative solutions through movement of the field boundaries over different functions or components. Generally, only the two endpoint set-of-functions need be at different field values, and the intermediary parts or functions connecting them can be in either field. We conclude with a set of architectural guidelines to bridge the gap between current work and practical architectural synthesis considerations.

Copyright © 2010 by ASME

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