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Engineering Data Integration In A Discrete Part Design And Manufacturing Environment


Rangan, Ravi Mangalam (1990) Doctoral Thesis, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta.


The integration of CAD/CAM systems in engineering design and manufacturing environments follows ad-hoc methodologies dictated by system requirements rather than design intent. Furthermore, typical large scale design projects require a large body of information and expertise that must be harnessed and made available both during, and subsequent to the design stages. The information that is made available to aid a particular designer is very difficult to manage--it is widespread, diffuse and unorganized, and originates from different sources, and is conveyed in different mediums.

The goal of this dissertation is to understand the relevance of information management in engineering design, and to develop computer aided tools that relieve this information burden associated with engineering tasks. The product of this research is a framework for an integrated design environment, and the implementation of software prototypes that adequately recognize the interaction between the designer and the underlying engineering design processes. These prototypes seek to externalize the information needs of designers and engineers working in cooperative multidisciplinary design environments.

This research adopts a case study approach. The design and manufacturing activities at a major computer manufacturing plant are modeled using activity models and information models. The research methodology employs protocol studies to understand the issues relevant to managing and controlling engineering product development data throughout its life cycle.

A discussion of the protocol studies as well as a model of the product development process based on the principle of information minimization is introduced. This model is found to be particularly useful for design for manufacturability considerations.

Manuscript: order via UMI