In the course of Product Design and Development, The Engineering Design Process is the sequential design process that may involve multi-disciplines such as mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, architectural engineering, industrial engineering, material science, aerodynamics, fluid dynamics, and so on.
Engineering Design Process
As we have already mentioned that the Engineering Design Process is the sequential design process that may involve multi-disciplines.
Any Engineering Product which has been ever produced, which will have the design process implemented. But choosing the most reliable discipline for solving the engineering issues is the complex task.
Following is the series of steps involved in the Engineering Design Process
- Define the Problem
- Specify Design Requirements
- Analyse and evaluate, choose a solution
- Prototyping and Testing
- Preliminary Design
- Detail Design
- Design for Manufacturability
Define the Problem
In the Engineering design process, we will start with defining the problem in such a way that an engineer will understand and able to proceed for the next step in the process.
Defining the problem can be done by asking the following questions.
- What is the problem or need?
- Who has the problem or need?
- Why is it important to solve?
The next step in the Engineering design process is that background research. When we have a problem, it is important to learn from the experiences of others. It helps you to find out any existing solutions for similar problems and to avoid the mistake that has been done in the past.
So, for doing the background research, we have two resources, on is the user experience and the second one is the Existing solutions for similar problems.
Specify Design Requirements
To successfully solve the problem, what are the necessary specification or the requirement that need to be fulfilled by the product. These details help us to achieve the solution for the problem.
This specification may be design requirements or physical characteristics or technical limitations and customer usage requirements.
Conceptualization: Analyse and evaluate, choose a solution
Once we have done the background research and defining the specifications, the next step in the Engineering Design Process is that brainstorming and generate Various solutions.
We need to take the pros and cons into account for each of these various possible solutions.
And finally, analyse and evaluate these various possible solutions and comes up with the best possible and suitable solution for the problem.
Preliminary Design, Prototyping and Testing
Once we have the solution, we have to develop a prototype of the product and test how the solution will work for the problem.
After testing the prototype, a redesign may be required for multiple times (Iterations) before we go for the final design.
This Detail design is the step, where we can say the solution has been found out. The Detail designs include the detailed description of each and every component and functions through the solid modelling, drawings and specifications. These detailed drawings are up for the Manufacturing.
Design for Manufacturability
Design for Manufacturability is the general engineering art of designing products in such a way that they are easy to manufacture.
Finding our the best Manufacturing processes and material availability and processing lead times and material handling.
This can be done through computer programs such as Boothroyd DFM software.
We have discussed the different engineering Design Process Steps in detail. Let us know if you have any further thoughts in this topic in the comments section below.