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A computational tool for virtual product development exploiting changeability knowledge

: Francalanza, Emmanuel; Borg, Jonathan; Constantinescu, Carmen

Maier, A. ; Design Society, Glasgow:
21st International Conference on Engineering Design, ICED 2017. Proceedings. Vol.4: Design Methods and Tools : Vancouver, Canada, 21-25.08.2017
Glasgow: Design Society, 2017 (DS. Design Society DS87-4)
ISBN: 978-1-904670-92-6
International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED) <21, 2017, Vancouver>
Fraunhofer IAO ()

Shifts in customer needs coupled with highly competitive markets and technological advances, means that product families evolve over time. Product family evolution has an effect not only on how the current and future manufacturing requirements are defined but also on the manufacturing system design process itself and represents one of the main difficulties in designing manufacturing systems. Two types of factory life cycle consequences have been identified which may occur as a result of design decisions during the manufacturing system synthesis design activity. This research therefore contributes a novel changeability knowledge based product development approach framework to reveal and analyse the consequences of commitments made during manufacturing system design on future product capability, hence on product evolution, and factory changeability. This approach was implemented in a computational tool for virtual product development which exploits changeability knowledge to assist, guide and motivate manufacturing system designers into designing more changeable manufacturing systems.