In this paper, we present the results of a study to validate a taxonomy of manufacturing issues. This taxonomy serves as a checklist of manufacturing issues which should be considered during the conceptual and detail design stages of the product definition process.

Subjects in this validation study were given one of three different levels of the taxonomy at one of two different stages of design and asked to perform design tasks. The subjects’ use of the taxonomy and their ability to develop meaningful requirements with their given taxonomy were recorded. The data was analyzed using an analysis of variance technique to compare subjects using different taxonomy levels at different stages of the design process. The analysis shows that the taxonomy and the underlying methodology of creating and using the taxonomy helps designers manage product requirements during the early stages of the design process. The analysis also shows that the taxonomy needs to be used in a methodical manner to maximize its effectiveness.

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