Towards product platform introduction: optimising commonality of components

Zapico, Miguel; Eckert, Claudia; Jowers, Iestyn and Earl, Christopher (2015). Towards product platform introduction: optimising commonality of components. In: Proceedings of the 20th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED15).


Companies that design and manufacture products for a wide range of related applications need to offer the right product for each use. A platform design strategy allows designing the product range based on product platforms, where some of the components and systems are common across the range whereas other components are individual for each product variant. This paper presents the problems that a company faces when trying to introduce a platform strategy and outlines a method to find suitable components to be made common. The method is shown with a simple case. The approach uses fuzzy logic to obtain a suitable criterion to assess the overall value of the product line and a genetic algorithm for finding the set of components to be made common

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