An Approach to Include a Systematic Material and Manufacturing Process Selection into the Engineering Design Process

By Jörg Feldhusen and Martin J. Benders.

Published by The Design Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Although a lot of recent literature states that the material and process selection should be conducted as a systematic decision process, VDI-Guideline 2223 still states that the designer should select materials and manufacturing processes based on his knowledge. But a survey has shown that designers have little knowledge about materials and manufacturing processes. Additionally one of the main aims of the engineering design science is to reduce the influence of the designer’s knowledge and experience on the designed product. Therefore a systematic material, process and embodiment type selection process with some helpful tools is proposed here. The process consists of the process steps “Identify Embodiment Determining Requirements”, “Identify Working Surface Pairs”, “Working Surface Synthesis”, “Channel and Support Structure Synthesis”, “Cross Section Synthesis”, “Manufacturing Process Chain Synthesis”, “Material Synthesis” as well as “Evaluation and Selection”. The presentation in this chronological order is meant as a guideline to the designer. He should adapt the process to his needs by rearranging the process steps or skipping some them. In the paper assisting tools and methods are described for most of the process steps. A graphical requirements “list” to document local requirements, for example, will help to increase the use of hybrid materials. Due to this systematic and combined approach for synthesizing and selecting materials, manufacturing processes and embodiment types, the embodiment of the product will be less dependent on the knowledge of the designer.

Keywords: Systematic Engineering Design Process, Material and Process Selection

Design Principles and Practices: An International Journal, Volume 4, Issue 1, pp.241-258. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 4.740MB).

Dr. Jörg Feldhusen

Head of Chair and Institute, Chair and Institute for Engineering Design, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany

Dr. Ing. Jörg Feldhusen graduated from the Technical University of Berlin in 1989. Between 1989 and 1994 he was the department head of Electronic Design at AEG Westinghouse Transportation Systems, Berlin. He then went on to become head of design and development of the Duewag railway vehicle manufacturing company, Duesseldorf, followed by technical manager of Siemens Light Rail, Düsseldorf and Erlangen. In 1999 he was made professor for Engineering Design and in 2000 head of the Chair and Institute for Engineering Design at RWTH Aachen University.

Martin J. Benders

Research Assistent, Chair and Institute for Engineering Design, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen, Germany

Dipl.-Ing. Martin J. Benders graduated from RWTH Aachen University in 2005 with a main focus on engineering design. During his studies he conducted engineering projects for the automotive and railroad industries. He wrote his Diplom-thesis at the trailer and semi-trailer manufacturer Schmitz Cargobull in Vreden, Germany. Since 2005 he is research assistant in the hybrid structures group at the Chair and Institute for Engineering Design at RWTH Aachen University. The hybrid structures group aims at increasing the use of hybrid materials such as sandwich elements by developing easy to use strength hypothesis, standardized connecting technologies and material selection processes for them.


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