Products which transform to reveal new functionality have been a source of fascination and utility for ages. Such products — transformers — have been previously designed employing ad hoc creativity rather than by pursuing any formal design methodology. By incorporating a design methodology and a concept generation tool for transformers, this research not only unearths further utility for these innovative and revolutionary products, but also aids engineers in the design of these devices with dexterity. The success and advantages of transformers result from added functionality while simultaneously using fewer resources and occupying less space. This paper elucidates the foundation of a methodology for the design of such transforming devices. Our basic research on transforming systems involves a combined inductive and deductive approach, uncovering transformation design principles and a novel method for designing transforming products. In the early stages of design, this method employs a unique process to extract customer needs by examining the requirement hierarchy of product usage scenarios. Such an approach broadens the scope of design and aids in identifying opportunities for transforming products while developing process level insights and solutions catering to these needs. During the concept generation phase of design, the method exploits the transformation design principles as a novel tool to complement and expand contemporary concept generation techniques. A unique bicycle accessory which transforms from a lock to a pump and vice versa is provided as an example of the transformational design process.
- Design Engineering Division and Computers and Information in Engineering Division
Design for Transformation: Theory, Method and Application
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Singh, V, Walther, B, Krager, J, Putnam, N, Koraishy, B, Wood, KL, & Jensen, D. "Design for Transformation: Theory, Method and Application." Proceedings of the ASME 2007 International Design Engineering Technical Conferences and Computers and Information in Engineering Conference. Volume 3: 19th International Conference on Design Theory and Methodology; 1st International Conference on Micro- and Nanosystems; and 9th International Conference on Advanced Vehicle Tire Technologies, Parts A and B. Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. September 4–7, 2007. pp. 447-459. ASME. https://doi.org/10.1115/DETC2007-34876
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