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TIGER Experiences with Prime-Supplier Collaborative Engineering


Peak, R. S.; Fulton, R. E.; Sitaraman, S. K (1997) TIGER Experiences with Prime-Supplier Collaborative Engineering. AIAA Atlanta Section Aerospace Tech. Symposium, March 22, 1997, Atlanta.


The DARPA-sponsored TIGER project (Team Integrated Electronic Response) demonstrates advanced engineering collaboration between primes and suppliers using standards-based design and manufacturing tools. In the TIGER scenario, a large manufacturer provides its suppliers early printed wiring assembly/board (PWA/B) design information in a standard STEP format. Suppliers use the TIGER toolset via an Internet-based engineering bureau to supplement this information with their process expertise. They then perform a variety of process-specific design checks, including design-for- manufacturability (DFM) and thermomechanical analysis. As members of the product team, suppliers feedback design improvement suggestions via a negotiation facility.

This presentation overviews this prime-supplier interaction with an emphasis on thermomechanical analysis capabilities and the underlying CAD/CAE integration techniques. The electronic commerce context is also highlighted which deals with business aspects of collaborative engineering such as electronic request for proposals, technical data exchange, and Internet-based security.

The TIGER scenario has been tested with Boeing and Holaday Circuits as a representative prime and supplier, respectively. Other team members are Arthur D. Little, Atlanta Electronic Commerce Resource Center, Georgia Tech, International TechneGroup Inc., and South Carolina Research Authority. Related activities underway at the Atlanta Electronic Commerce Resource Center to support small businesses are included.

Experiences indicate TIGER leverages the expertise of suppliers to provide certain design checks that are more precise than those typically done by primes. The Internet-based engineering bureau offers these checks to suppliers on a cost-effective basis ranging from self-service (for highly automated routine analyses) to full- service (for challenging new analyses). This paradigm provides suppliers advanced capabilities without requiring expensive in-house tools and expertise. Overall, the advantage of TIGER techniques is the effective inclusion of suppliers in the product team, resulting in timely, cost-saving design improvements.

See http://eislab.gatech.edu/tiger/ for further information, including guidelines for primes and suppliers on implementing these techniques.