A FRAMEWORK FOR FUNCTION SPECIFICATIONS-TO-CONCEPTUAL FORM TRANSLATION TOOL IN FUNCTION-ORIENTED MECHANICAL DESIGN SYSTEMS
Design is functionality driven. All products and parts have some intended reason behind their existence. Although computer aided systems have made considerable advances in capturing and representing geometrical shape, not much progress has been made in capturing and modeling product functionality and its physical realization. This research proposes a methodology to assist designers during the first stages of design. This methodology provides a framework to help the designer translate functional specifications into conceptual forms. This research develops a translation tool to model functionality and to carry out conceptual design with the aid of the computer. This tool serves as a bridge between the conceptual design phase and the detailed design phase of a product. The translation tool developed in this research supports the conceptual design phase by providing a functional data model, a function server model, and a conceptual product model. The functional model includes the use of operands and relations to define and capture product functionality. The function server model represents the physical realization of the specified functions. The conceptual product model organizes and documents the product information in both the functional and the physical domains. The knowledge base for the function servers is stored in a function driven database. This database allows the designer to view design possibilities that may never have occurred to them.
Models provided in this work have been implemented as a relational database system by using MySQL. A web-based graphic user interface is developed with PHP to provide an interactive environment for modeling and for searching the function driven database. Propagation of functional and physical information to downstream design activities has been enabled by the use of the XML data format. The models and concepts developed in this research are validated through a case study of a realistic mechanical device.
Advisor:Prof. Bartholomew O. Nnaji; Dr. Meng-En Wang; Dr. Michael Lovell; Prof. Bopaya Bidanda; Dr. Mary Besterfield-Sacre
School:University of Pittsburgh
School Location:USA - Pennsylvania
Source Type:Master's Thesis
Date of Publication:10/14/2005