Featured research (55)
As catalysts for product innovation and product development, different approaches for biologically inspired design (BID) are exciting options. However, while general BID theory require a focus on single functions, real world products are characterized by performing multiple functions. The development of an anterior eye-chamber model is used to showcase the issue. In a systematic literature review (SLR), state-of-the-art methodologies, methods and tools BID practice are discovered and the current state of multi-functionality in BID are assessed. The SLR revealed 18 contributions with 8 BID methodologies and 12 stage-specific BID tools (of which 50% addressed the solution search phase) in addition to 5 papers addressing multi-functionality in BID. At present multi-functionality in BID is only treated in a limited set of papers. While designers interested in BID are advised to discover multi-functional analogies, the present approach to handling multi-functional problems in BID suggest functional decomposition and multiple BID efforts. Therefore, the development of design support for handling multi-functional problems, including tools for problem analysis are needed.
In solution-driven BID (sol-BID) a challenge is to identify suited applications that will benefit from the solutions principles found in nature. A well-known example of sol-BID is the self-cleaning lotus plant, that has inspired lotus paint and other coating methods. However, sol-BID is often performed by biologists with insight into the biological strategy and organism and typically only little knowledge of technical applications and design methodology. Searching for applications is therefore a challenge to many. Sol-BID has many things in common with technical application search where new applications are sought for a specific production technology or another competence characterizing a company. Experiences from technical application search could therefore form a valuable input for how to perform sol-BID. The paper presents two case studies of application search and proposes a procedure to be used in solution driven BID.
In this paper, a novel methodology in designing a micro heat exchanger is proposed by modifying a conventional design methodology for macro products with the considerations of differences between design of a micro and a macro product. The methodology starts with the identification of differences in design considerations for micro scale products compared to the macro scale. These design considerations consist of material selection, manufacturing process, physical phenomena and shape and geometry design. Manufacturability criteria are defined and various potential manufacturing processes for fabricating micro heat exchangers are ranked based on the defined criteria. Following the design methodology, primary design ideas for micro heat exchangers are generated according to the heat transfer principles for macro heat exchangers. Taking micro design considerations into account, the designs from next iteration are created. Finally, the performances of the designs for micro heat exchangers are compared with their macro counterparts. The most appropriate designs for micro heat exchangers are finalized. The micro specific design guidelines obtained by the designer through evaluating the modeling results and the design criteria are formulated in a knowledge-based unit called “Rules To Consider” (RTC). The proposed methodology provides an interactive design process through the RTC unit. The RTC data is used by the designer in the subsequent iterations of the micro-product design as well as can be used by designers/engineers in design of the same category of micro products. Furthermore, through utilization of the proposed methodology by designers/engineers for design of other micro products, the RTC unit can be enriched with micro-oriented design principles and accordingly provide a basic guideline for design of micro products.