ArticlePDF Available

Abstract and Figures

Over the last two decades, consumers have become increasingly aware and desiring of sustainable products. However, little attention has been paid to developing conceptual design methods that explicitly take into account environmental impact. This paper contributes a method of automated function component generation, and guided down-selection and decision-making based upon environmental impact. The environmental impact of functions has been calculated for 17 of the products found in the Design Repository using ReCiPe scoring in SimaPRO. A hierarchical Bayesian approach is used to estimate the potential environmental impacts of specific functions when realized into components. Previously, product environmental impacts were calculated after a product was developed to the component design stage. The method developed in this paper could be used to provide a criticality ranking based on which functional solutions historically have the greatest risk of causing high environmental impact. The method is demonstrated using a simple clock system as an example. A comparative case study of two phone chargers for use in third-world countries demonstrates the decision-making capabilities of this method, and shows that it is possible to compare the environmental impact of alternative function structures during the conceptual stage of design. With the method presented in this paper, it is now possible to make early functional modeling design decisions specifically taking into account historical environmental impact of functionally similar products.
Content may be subject to copyright.
Ryan Arlitt
Design Engineering Laboratory,
School of Mechanical, Industrial, and
Manufacturing Engineering,
Oregon State University,
Corvallis, OR 97331
Douglas L. Van Bossuyt
Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Colorado School of Mines,
Golden, CO 80401
Rob B. Stone
Design Engineering Laboratory,
School of Mechanical, Industrial, and
Manufacturing Engineering,
Oregon State University,
Corvallis, OR 97331
Irem Y. Tumer
Complex Engineered Systems
Design Laboratory,
School of Mechanical, Industrial, and
Manufacturing Engineering,
Oregon State University,
Corvallis, OR 97331
The Function-Based Design
for Sustainability Method
Over the last two decades, consumers have become increasingly aware and desiring of
sustainable products. However, little attention has been paid to developing conceptual
design methods that explicitly take into account environmental impact. This paper con-
tributes a method of automated function component generation, and guided down-
selection and decision-making based upon environmental impact. The environmental
impact of functions has been calculated for 17 of the products found in the Design Repos-
itory using ReCiPe scoring in SimaPRO. A hierarchical Bayesian approach is used to
estimate the potential environmental impacts of specific functions when realized into
components. Previously, product environmental impacts were calculated after a product
was developed to the component design stage. The method developed in this paper could
be used to provide a criticality ranking based on which functional solutions historically
have the greatest risk of causing high environmental impact. The method is demonstrated
using a simple clock system as an example. A comparative case study of two phone charg-
ers for use in third-world countries demonstrates the decision-making capabilities of this
method, and shows that it is possible to compare the environmental impact of alternative
function structures during the conceptual stage of design. With the method presented in
this paper, it is now possible to make early functional modeling design decisions specifi-
cally taking into account historical environmental impact of functionally similar
products. [DOI: 10.1115/1.4035431]
Keywords: sustainability, environmental impact, functional modeling, design decision-
making, product design
1 Introduction
Sustainability in manufactured products is an increasingly
important consideration that design engineers must take into
account when designing new consumer products. A small but sig-
nificant segment of the consumer market (15–30 million people in
the USA as of 2009) will pay a premium for consumer products
that are more sustainable than functionally identical competitor
products [1]. However, efforts to create sustainable products often
do not occur until after most major design decisions have been
made, and manufacturing processes selection has begun [2,3].
This results in unsatisfactory sustainability due to compromises
foisted upon sustainable manufacturing efforts [4].
Efforts to connect early phase conceptual design functional
modeling with later analysis tools—such as for risk and reliability
analysis, and for mission stage planning—have brought significant
analytic capabilities earlier in the design process to help shape
important early phase design decisions [58]. Analyzing signifi-
cant design and manufacturing considerations in the very early
stages of a design process can mitigate the risks of costly redesign.
Thus, a method to analyze environmental impact during the ear-
liest stages of design has the potential to improve product or sys-
tem sustainability and may be used to make design tradeoff
1.1 Specific Contributions. This paper contributes the
function-based design for sustainability (FDS) method, which
enables automated functional solution generation and guided
down-selection and decision-making based on environmental
impact. The environmental impact of functions has been calcu-
lated for 17 of the products found in the Design Repository [9](a
product library where products are decomposed to the component
and functional level) using SimaPRO [10] (a lifecycle assessment
software product) and the ReCiPe [11] lifecycle assessment scor-
ing method and dataset. This product data was created during a
separate study of the relationship between sustainability and inno-
vation [4], and we use it in this manuscript to demonstrate the
FDS method. ReCiPe scores for every component are calculated
based on the material, the manufacturing process, and the mass of
the part. The ReCiPe method itself accounts for impacts during
material extraction through end of life [11]. FDS uses a hierarchi-
cal Bayesian modeling approach to identify low environmental
impact functional solutions for products during the early phases of
design by using historical function–component information via
mean and standard deviation statistics. Previously, product envi-
ronmental impacts were calculated after a product was developed
to the component design stage. The FDS method makes it possible
to make early function-based modeling design decisions specifi-
cally taking into account environmental impact of the product or
More specifically, FDS is used to rank the importance of func-
tion alternatives or function-to-component design choices with
respect to their potential to affect the finished product’s environ-
mental impact. The goal is similar to that of a risk priority number
(RPN) in a failure modes and effects analysis (FMEA) [12]. The
RPN is an aggregate score created for each potential failure
Corresponding author.
Contributed by the Design Theory and Methodology Committee of ASME for
publication in the JOURNAL OF MECHANICAL DESIGN. Manuscript received August 2,
2016; final manuscript received November 22, 2016; published online February 20,
2017. Assoc. Editor: Shapour Azarm.
Journal of Mechanical Design APRIL 2017, Vol. 139 / 041102-1Copyright V
C2017 by ASME
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
identified in an FMEA, and it creates a basis for ranking the
importance of potential failures. RPN ranking allows designers to
prioritize their focus on mitigating the most important potential fail-
ures. Similarly, the FDS method provides a way to prioritize early
design decisions based on their potential environmental impacts.
2 Background
The FDS method presented in this paper enhances the ability of
the product design engineers to develop sustainable products. And
while the broad concept of sustainability includes environmental,
economic, and social factors, in this work, we focus specifically
on improving sustainability through reducing environmental
impact. Several key areas of existing research and industrial prac-
tice are relevant to understanding and implementing FDS. This
section reviews specific details of several topics important to the
method including: innovation and sustainability in design, life-
cycle assessment, functional modeling and the design repository,
functional and environmental impact, and hierarchical Bayesian
2.1 Innovation and Sustainability in Design. In recent deca-
des, growing attention has been paid to the development of sus-
tainable processes and products both for short and long-term
issues [1,1316]. In addition to consumer-driven needs and desires
spurring companies to adopt sustainable design practices, compa-
nies wishing to participate in international markets must adhere to
a number of different regulations (e.g., Refs. [17,18]). Such regu-
lations have necessitated that many products be redesigned in
order that they may continue to be sold in the European market-
place [19].
Several design tools have been developed to help companies
comply with new regulations in Europe and elsewhere [20]. Most
of the currently available tools are TRIZ-derived [2124] and
base their sustainability statistics on seven eco-innovation ele-
ments embodied in three categories including: (1) material reduc-
tion, (2) energy reduction, and (3) product durability [2533].
While the TRIZ-based methods are useful for creativity and
ideation within the context of sustainability, they are not appropri-
ate for designers who wish to use a functional modeling approach
to early conceptual system design [34]. Work has been done to
link TRIZ’s problem-solving approach with the philosophy of
functional modeling [35] and to merge TRIZ’s active principles
with functional modeling [36], among other efforts [3739]; how-
ever, a linkage between TRIZ and functional modeling has not
been developed to allow sustainability information to move
between TRIZ and functional modeling. Rather than developing
such a linkage, we have chosen to develop a method (presented in
this paper) to assess sustainability directly in functional modeling.
2.2 Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). Life cycle assessment
(LCA) [4042] has proven to be a valuable tool for a variety of
purposes and industries [4346]. While it is recognized that LCA
can be applied to the design process [47], it is challenging to do so
in the conceptual stages of design when sunk costs are low. Vari-
ous applications of LCA into existing design methods have found
varying measures of success in practice. Quality function deploy-
ment (QFD) [4852] and TRIZ have [53] also seen LCA integra-
tion, but injecting life cycle requirements at this stage (prior to
functional analysis) can artificially limit the solution space.
Another drawback of many QFD-based methods is that product
designers are not provided actionable solutions to design chal-
lenges. Instead, product designers must look to other sources for
eco-innovative design solutions. The FDS method is formulated
to address these issues by offering the designer actionable choices
via comparisons between options at the functional stage of design.
2.3 Functional Modeling and the Design Repository. Func-
tional modeling, the function-flow taxonomy, and the functional
basis [13,14] have been developed in part to help product design-
ers to determine the functional design of a product in the early
stages of conceptual design [5458]. As the design progresses,
libraries of abstract historical product data, such as the Design
Repository, allow for functional models to be developed into com-
ponent designs through semi-automated processes. A restricted
vocabulary of component types, which can be developed and
matched to these functions using reverse engineering data, facili-
tates this process [5061]. Function-based design continues to be
extended [6364] to allow interesting and useful analyses [6576]
to be performed by designers early in the conceptual stages of
design [7788]. Using traditional engineering approaches, such
analyses are not possible until much later in the design process
[8993]. For example, efforts have been made to bring risk and
reliability analysis into the earliest phases of design to prevent
costly redesigns or retrofits from significant risk or reliability
issues discovered late in the design process [58,94]. While
design repositories can suffer from limited size, approaches such
as information extraction and human computation have been used
to improve the size of product data sets [9597] and thus improve
their predictive power.
2.4 Functional and Environmental Impact. Devanathan
et al. have shown that it is feasible to associate environmental
impact with a given function by using a function impact matrix
(FIM) [98,99] to isolate functions that dominate product environ-
mental impact. Individual component impacts can be determined
and then mapped back to the functions that the components solve.
FIM works by combining LCA with portions of QFD. FIM is
developed by combining environmental impact data for each com-
ponent in a product with a function component matrix, and then
distributing impact data to the functions that define the product.
FIM was developed to redesign existing products rather than
design new products [98,99].
Gilchrist et al. [4] developed a method to compare the func-
tional impact of existing products by directly linking functions to
environmental impacts through FIM using ReCiPe 2008 [11], a
dataset and LCA computational method, and information from
SimaPRO [10], a LCA software package. Their work determines
the most common component used to solve a particular function
and investigates the method of manufacture of the average com-
ponents [4,100]. From the work of Gilchrist et al., it was found that
innovative products often fare worse in sustainability metrics than
common products that solve the same functional design. While Gil-
christ et al. method is useful for existing products that can be
decomposed to a functional level, it allocates historical environmen-
tal impact evenly across all functions that a type of component has
performed. This simple assumption detracts from the predictive
power of the method when developing new products.
2.5 Hierarchical Bayesian Modeling. Hierarchical Bayesian
modeling is a statistical modeling approach that combines Bayes-
ian inference with hierarchical statistical modeling [101]. This
approach has been applied to solve problems in a wide range of
domains including geochemical parameter estimation [102],
growth rate forecasting [103], speech recognition [104], relational
learning [105], and reliability forecasting [106].
Gelman et al. [101] describe the hierarchical Bayesian model-
ing approach. They present an example in which a joint probabil-
ity model is created for an overall rat population using (1) a
noninformative hyperprior distribution representing current
beliefs about rat tumor incidence and (2) new results from a series
of experiments.
O’Halloran [107] use this hierarchical Bayesian approach—
along with historical reliability data, the functional basis, and the
component taxonomy—to develop a methodology for reliability
prediction. Their methodology enables a designer to consider the
probable reliability of candidate systems at the functional model-
ing stage of design. Each observation in O’Halloran’s work is a
041102-2 / Vol. 139, APRIL 2017 Transactions of the ASME
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
failure rate for a real component. These observations are organ-
ized hierarchically according to their function classifications and
component classifications. Failure rate probability distributions
are calculated for each top-level function according to the compo-
nent subpopulations within, which enables predictions about the
future failure rates of any given function. Others have previously
used hierarchical Bayesian approaches for a variety of purposes in
engineering design in applications that include consumer prefer-
ence modeling and marketing decision support (e.g., see Refs.
3 Methodology
The function-based design for sustainability (FDS) method con-
sists of three distinct steps as shown in Fig. 1. The first stage
requires collection and preparation of historical environmental
impact data. The second stage establishes predictive probability
distributions of environmental impact for each
function–component combination in the historical dataset. The
third stage uses these probability distributions to provide guidance
to design engineers.
3.1 Step 1: Data Preparation. The data preparation phase
involves the collection of historical product data from the design-
er’s domain. This reflects the approach used in function-based
failure prediction methodologies based on the historical failure
data [58,89,112116]. In the example and case study presented
in Sec. 4, a convenience sample of 17 consumer products is used
(with ReCiPe scores calculated for each component) to demon-
strate the approach. These products are cataloged in the Design
Repository [9] and were used in a previous sustainability study
[4]. To create this test set, cradle-to-grave environmental impact
scores are queried from SimaPRO based on the materials and
manufacturing processes that make up each component. The end-
of-life scenario is assumed to be landfilling, and packaging and
shipping are assumed to be equal across all products. The three
ReCiPe endpoint indicators are aggregated into a single unitless
performance metric using the hierarchist weighting and normal-
ization method. Use phase impacts are estimated for each type of
component based on expected lifetimes and duty cycles of the
product and component.
Given a set of products similar to the product being designed,
each component in each product is assigned a functional basis func-
tion, a component taxonomy type, and an environmental impact
score. Impact scores are aggregated by shared function–component
pairings within each product and normalized to product mass.
The data preparation procedure begins by processing each prod-
uct separately. For each product, each component’s impact score
in Iis divided by its parent product’s total mass (mp) as shown in
Eq. (1). The mass normalization produces a vector of impact den-
sity observations (y) that enables comparison of general compo-
nent taxonomy types across multiple products. For example, if all
other factors are held equal, the environmental impact of two elec-
tric motors that comprise 20% of a product’s mass will be identi-
cal in this analysis, regardless of whether that product’s mass is
10 kg or 100 kg. For any analysis that uses this data, the outcome
is interpreted as a relative historical likelihood that a given type of
component will contribute significantly to a product’s overall
environmental impact. Figure 2provides an example of the data
preparation stage. The ReCipE score of the first gear in the Polar-
oid Pogo (3.05 10
) is divided by 218 g to produce a normal-
ized ReCiPe score of 1.40 10
. The normalized scores for both
gears in the Polaroid Pogo are then summed together to create a
single entry for (gear, change mechanical). This entry is grouped
with the corresponding score from the Garage Door Opener to
produce a vector of observations for (gear, change mechanical)
In the remaining discussion, yijk will refer to one normalized
impact observation (i) within one function–component pair (j)
Fig. 1 FDS methodology overview
Journal of Mechanical Design APRIL 2017, Vol. 139 / 041102-3
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
within one product (k). The vector y*jrepresents an outcome of
the data preparation stage, containing a normalized set of environ-
mental impact observations ifor a specific function–component
pairing j. In Fig. 2,y1;ðgear;change mechanicalÞ;Poloroid Pogo ¼1.4010
and y2;ðgear;change mechanicalÞ;Poloroid Pogo ¼3.56 10
; while
y;ðgear;change mechanicalÞ¼[1.43 10
, 2.40 10
The mass normalization builds in the implicit assumption that
in a given problem domain, the nuances of that domain have a
strong effect on the range of masses in potential alternatives. It is
not useful to compare the environmental impact of a car engine to
the environmental impact of a lawnmower engine; the mass of the
car engine will almost always be larger (and therefore lead to a
higher environmental impact) because the car engine has more
mass to move. When generalizing the impact of engines in gen-
eral, it is more useful to examine each component’s contribution
as a percentage of its mass in the system because it abstracts away
some of this domain specificity.
After normalization, components with the same functional basis
function and component taxonomy type (within each product) are
aggregated into a single function–component pair. Mass-
normalized impact scores with the same function–component des-
ignation are summed as shown in Eq. (2),whereNis the number of
observations for function–component pair j,andyijk is the impact
density of one function–component pair within a given product. In
Fig. 2, the normalized scores of the two “gear” components in the
Polaroid Pogo are summed to produce a single aggregated score for
(gear, change mechanical), in this case 1.4310
y:jk ¼X
yijk (2)
Normalizing and aggregating components into single
function–component pairs addresses component taxonomy cate-
gories that distribute their impact across many discrete component
observations within a single product. For example, the environ-
mental impact of a 20 g circuit board is assumed to be roughly
comparable to the environmental impact of two 10 g circuit
boards. Summing impact observations with identical function and
component types creates a raw aggregated impact observation for
each unique function–component pair in a product.
Next, each yijk score is binned such that every unique
function–component pair has a vector of environmental impact
densities gathered from all products in the dataset. Equation (3)
describes this process wherein each product’s summed impact
score yjkKis one element in the vector yj. For example, Fig. 2
shows the creation of a two-element vector of normalized
scores—one from the Polaroid Pogo and one from the Garage
Door Opener—for the (gear, change mechanical) pair. This vector
will contribute to predicting the impact of the “change mechani-
cal” function
As a result of aggregating the mass-normalized impact scores
in this manner, design guidance that uses this data is based on
the share of a product’s overall environmental impact contributed
by any given function–component pair. A key difference
between using historical data to predict environmental impact
instead of reliability [107,117] is that environmental impact is
sensitive to component mass, while the failure modes and mech-
anisms that drive reliability are more consistent with respect to
mass. As such, while historical reliability methods can ignore
component mass, environmental impact scores must account for
component mass.
The outcome of the data preparation stage is a set of historical
observations that describe the environmental impact for each
function–component pairing in each product. Using
function–component pairings at this stage rather than grouping
each impact observation directly under functions supports the
hierarchical approach used in the probability prediction stage.
3.2 Step 2: Probability Prediction. The second step of the
method applies a hierarchical Bayesian approach [101] to generate
probability distributions of environmental impact for each func-
tion. This approach builds on the approach developed by O’Hal-
loran [107] that uses a hierarchical Bayesian approach to generate
function-level hyperdistributions for reliability prediction. Equa-
tions (4)(9) in this paper are reproduced from O’Halloran’s work
The inputs to the probability prediction stage are the impact
scores from the data preparation stage and an expected sample
variance of environmental impact for each type of component.
The outputs are sets of Bayesian hyperparameters (mean and
standard deviation) for function-level normal probability distribu-
tions describing the probability density of environmental impact
for each function.
Fig. 2 Data preparation
041102-4 / Vol. 139, APRIL 2017 Transactions of the ASME
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
A hierarchical Bayesian approach is selected for this method
because of the natural hierarchy that exists between functions and
components. A single function can often be satisfied by a variety
of components. As a consequence, each group of children in this
natural hierarchy (groups of components) provides information to
make predictions about its parent (function).
Different components performing the same function can exhibit
nonrandom covariance over a wide range of properties such as
mass, material, and manufacturing process. This leads to natural
divisions in groups of components that perform the same function.
For example, the environmental impact of components in the
function–component pairing (import electrical energy, battery) is
much different than that of components in (import electrical
energy, electric cord). All distributions in this methodology are
assumed to be unimodal and normal, although this is not always
an accurate assumption when these component subgroups exist.
To combat the issue of nonrandom variation amongst different
components that perform the same function, components under
each function are clustered into natural groups. A
function–component pair’s membership in a cluster is determined
using the mean value of its normalized scores.
Clustering is performed using Ward’s linkage [118] where the
number of clusters is defined to be equal to the quantity of differ-
ent orders of magnitude in the set of component means. Determin-
ing the number of clusters in this way makes the following
assumption: if the environmental impact observations of two com-
ponents differ by an order of magnitude, then, a single normal dis-
tribution created from both is assumed to be a poor approximation
of the population. The clustering step leads to hyperdistributions
where the assumption of unimodality is more appropriate. A sepa-
rate function-level hyperdistribution is created for each compo-
nent cluster, and these cluster distributions can be used to guide
component selection while minimizing environmental impact.
After clustering has been completed, hyperparameters are cal-
culated for each function. A function can have several separate
sets of hyperparameters if the function’s components were
grouped into multiple clusters. First, the sample mean
y:jand sam-
ple variance r2
jfor each component cluster are calculated as
shown in Eqs. (4) and (5).Nand njare the number of observations
for each component, and yij is a single observation for component
j. The variance for all components r2is assumed to be equal to a
fixed value (In the Case Study section of this article, r2is arbitra-
rily set to 1.5 10
for all components)
yij (4)
Next, the precision-weighted average ^land total precision V1
of each cluster are calculated according to Eqs. (6) and (7).The
weighting factor wjis equal to the number of observations for com-
ponent j.s2is the actual function-level standard deviation, which is
later sampled across a span of evenly spaced values to numerically
calculate the probability of sgiven evidence yto determine pðsjyÞ.
While ^
lserves as the function-level mean, further calculation
is needed to determine function-level standard deviation s.
Equation (8) applies Bayes’ theorem with a noninformative uni-
form prior (pðsÞ¼1Þto find the posterior distribution pðsjyÞ. The
standard deviation hyperparameter is taken at its expected value:
where its probability density is the highest (Eq. (9)). These equa-
tions are reproduced from O’Halloran’s work [107], which in turn
sources them from Ref. [101]
3.3 Step 3: Guidance. The function-level hyperdistributions
developed in Step 2 can provide valuable design guidance, specifi-
cally with respect to making function-to-component design
choices. The approach can also compare alternative functions or
functional models based on the same information. In general,
function-level hyperdistributions with low mean and standard
deviation are preferred. Low mean indicates low environmental
impact, and low standard deviation indicates low variability in
this prediction.
If the goal is to optimize with respect to sustainability, then
each function distribution’s score Scan be calculated by the
inverse of the sum of its standard deviation sand its mean ^
according to Eq. (10). Each of these terms is scaled by a weighting
factor to capture designer priorities about which property to priori-
tize. Ranking importance by low scores prioritizes distributions
with low means and low standard deviations—i.e., function distri-
butions with consistently low environmental impact.
If sustainability is a constraint rather than an optimization vari-
able, then a z-score can be used to rank function distributions
based on the likelihood that they will meet a predefined environ-
mental impact target according to Eq. (11), where lis the mean, r
is the standard deviation, and xis the target value
The raw numbers produced by Eqs. (10) and (11) are not mean-
ingful without context. The Sand zscores are only assessed rela-
tive to one another to produce a rank ordering of priority.
4 Example
In this section, an focusing on the conceptual design of a
mechanical clock is presented to demonstrate the FDS method’s
mechanics. A Design Repository was populated with 17 common
consumer products such as an orbital sander, a CD player, a vac-
uum cleaner, a camera, and other products. Environmental impact
data were calculated as per Step 1 of the FDS methodology.
An initial conceptual design of a mechanical clock might lead
to the function chain in Fig. 3. This chain may exist as part of a
Fig. 3 Functional model of a manually operated mechanical
Journal of Mechanical Design APRIL 2017, Vol. 139 / 041102-5
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
larger model that also includes secondary functionality like using
mechanical energy to indicate a signal (e.g., using a clock face) or
protecting sensitive components from undesirable forces (e.g.,
impact) or materials (e.g., water).
The chain in Fig. 3indicates that mechanical energy will be
imported and stored for later use (in this case, moving the clock
hands). Applying the algorithm from the FDS methodology in
Step 2 shown in Eqs. (10) and (11) leads to the function distribu-
tions described by Fig. 4and Table 1. These distributions were
generated with a uniform prior density for the mean and an
assumed sample variance of 1.5 10
for mass normalized ReC-
iPe scores.
Guidance is provided by FDS per Step 3 of the methodology in
prioritizing for which subfunctions to perform component selec-
tion and detail design. The scores and priority ranks in Table 1are
given by Eq. (10) using uniform weights of w^
l¼1 and ws¼1.
For each function with multiple clusters, it is assumed that the
best (least impactful) one is selected. This is the case for the
“transfer mechanical energy” function. The outcome suggests that
for the available historical impact data in the consumer product
domain, the functions of “store mechanical energy” and “supply
mechanical energy” have the greatest historical risk of causing
high environmental impact.
One notable drawback of fitting a predictive probability distri-
bution to historical data is that a sufficient number of samples is
needed in order to assume that a normal distribution is a good
approximation of the data. In this case study, this assumption only
holds true for the 53 observations in “transfer mechanical energy.”
The other four functions have five or fewer observations, so these
results should be viewed only as demonstrative of the method,
and not as evidence about the relative environmental impacts of
these functions.
Rectifying this drawback requires expanding the design reposi-
tory with additional products that contain observations of func-
tions of interest. Assuming that all functional models are created
at the secondary level (their most expressive level [79]), there are
420 unique functions (21 verbs and 20 objects). Using the com-
mon heuristic that 30 samples enables the normality assumption
according to the central limit theorem [119] (in the absence of a
priori data to test for normality), 13,600 samples would be
required for such a database to provide predictive power for any
conceivable functional model. Given an average product size of
approximately 37 functions in the Design Repository, as few as
368 products could enable FDS on a full set on any functional
model. Because some function data must be split into multiple
groups when component data violates assumptions of normality
and unimodality, some functions are separated into multiple clus-
ters. The total number of required products in the database scales
linearly with the number of component clusters per function, as
shown in Eq. (12). For example, if every function’s component
data contained two distinct modes, the database would require 736
products. While there are certainly some assumptions built into
this calculation, it informs the feasibility of a database to support
FDS. Further, it highlights the importance of reliable digital prod-
uct data and data mining techniques to gather a variety of well-
formed computable product data.
Size ¼ðverbsÞðobjectsÞðcomponent clusters per functionÞ(12)
Guidance is further provided with respect to component selec-
tion. For functions that have been solved by a wide variety of
components, it is likely that some of the components tend to make
up a much larger proportion of the product’s total impact than
others. The clustering stage of the algorithm groups together with
function–component pairs have similar orders of magnitude in
their mass-normalized environmental impact scores. Table 2
shows five clusters for the “transfer mechanical energy” function.
The component groupings shown in Table 2provide a starting
point for selecting components to satisfy the “transfer mechanical
energy” function. Cluster 3 is the best-case cluster, possessing the
smallest means and standard deviations of its components’ impact
observations. Alternatively, if only one type of component is
suited to the task, then, the designer has information about which
function level means and standard deviations to select when com-
paring “transfer mechanical energy” to other functions. Notably,
the small quantities for the parameters in Table 2mean that their
impacts manifest as cumulative effects over many units (i.e., mil-
lions of products produced). Their real value in this context is in
enabling relative comparisons between design alternatives rather
than providing absolute measures of sustainability gain—a much
more challenging issue.
Contextual information and human reasoning skills play an
important role in applying the results of the analysis. Using these
results a designer can isolate “store mechanical energy” and
“supply mechanical energy” as key functions that are likely to
influence environmental impact. The designer may then focus on
designing an environmentally friendly torsional “spring” compo-
nent to serve the role of storing energy, prioritizing design deci-
sions that affect this component ahead of other functions and
The next highest priority function—“transfer mechanical
energy”—has five clusters. In this case, selecting a cluster is
straightforward. Cluster 3 possesses not only the most favorable S
score, but also contains components that would transmit intention-
ally created low magnitude mechanical energy in a clock. Clusters
Fig. 4 Probability density of each function in a mechanical
clock functional model
Table 1 Mechanical clock design function prioritization
Function Total observations Number of clusters Score Mean StDev Priority
Change mechanical 5 1 2.40 10
2.76 10
1.40 10
Import mechanical 2 1 1.10 10
3.43 10
5.68 10
Store mechanical 4 1 1.00 10
1.84 10
8.13 10
Supply mechanical 4 1 1.00 10
1.84 10
8.13 10
Transfer mechanical 53 5 1.09 10
5.15 10
4.00 10
041102-6 / Vol. 139, APRIL 2017 Transactions of the ASME
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
1, 2, and 5 are more appropriate for transferring unintentional or
system-wide mechanical energy, such as using a “housing” or a
“bracket” to absorb impacts or vibrations. Cluster 4’s electric
motor transfers mechanical energy as a side effect of converting
electrical energy into mechanical energy—a behavior that is not
desirable in our human-powered clock. After selecting Cluster 3,
a designer may then select a shaft component as in Fig. 5, fol-
lowed by a knob to import mechanical energy and a gear assembly
to change mechanical energy. This shows that the FDS method
can reclaim an expected clock design from sustainability data that
does not contain data for a clock—that aggregated environmental
impact data from other contexts produces reasonable results in a
new design context.
5 Comparative Model Case Study
The developing world encompasses between 2.1 and 6.6 billion
people by some estimates and contains an estimated purchasing
power of 5 trillion USD [120,121]. 17% of the world’s population
does not have access to electricity [122] yet in Africa, 60% of the
population had access to mobile phones in 2010 (up from 11% in
1999). In Kenya in 2011, 93% of households had a mobile phone.
In 1999, less than 3% of Kenyan households had access to a
mobile phone [123125]. Several different options are available
for people to charge mobile phones when they do not have access
to electricity from the grid, including solar charging [121], wind
charging [126], paying a merchant to charge the device [127], sec-
ondary battery charging [128], thermal electric charging [129],
and mechanical charging [127]. As being connected via a mobile
phone, it becomes more important to people in the developing
world [130,131], and mobile phone adoption is expected to
increase [132]. Thus, a robust market exists for phone chargers
that do not require electrical grid power. One such option that we
analyze here is a mechanically powered phone charger design.
This case study demonstrates FDS as an enabler of environmental
impact-based comparison between two alternative functional con-
cepts of a phone charger for the developing world.
The two alternative functional concepts of the mobile phone
charger both use mechanical energy to provide power, but the
way that each concept stores the energy is different. The first
(Fig. 6) stores and supplies energy in mechanical form (e.g.,
springs, flywheels, or gravitational potential energy). The second
(Fig. 7) stores and supplies energy in electrical form (e.g., capaci-
tor). We assume that the remaining functions are identical
between systems, enabling a valid comparison of the differences
Table 2 Transfer mechanical energy component clusters
Function–component pairs Function mean Function StDev
Cluster 1 Transfer mechanical_housing 1.05 10
5.53 10
Cluster 2 Transfer mechanical_bracket 4.99 10
3.46 10
Transfer mechanical_container
Transfer mechanical_support
Cluster 3 Transfer mechanical_actuator 5.1510
4.00 10
Transfer mechanical_belt
Transfer mechanical_clamp
Transfer mechanical_coupler
Transfer mechanical_electric plate
Transfer mechanical_electric switch
Transfer mechanical_friction enhancer
Transfer mechanical_gear
Transfer mechanical_hinge
Transfer mechanical_key
Transfer mechanical_knob
Transfer mechanical_lever
Transfer mechanical_link
Transfer mechanical_regulator
Transfer mechanical_seal
Transfer mechanical_securer
Transfer mechanical_sensor
Transfer mechanical_shaft
Transfer mechanical_sled
Transfer mechanical_spring
Transfer mechanical_sprocket
Transfer mechanical_tube
Transfer mechanical_unclassified
Transfer mechanical_valve
Transfer mechanical_wheel
Cluster 4 Transfer mechanical_electric motor 2.10 10
1.22 10
Cluster 5 Transfer mechanical_stabilizer 3.38 10
3.38 10
Fig. 5 Clock energy chain component selection
Fig. 6 Mechanical phone charger functional model 1—store as
mechanical energy
Fig. 7 Mechanical phone charger functional model 2—store
electrical energy
Journal of Mechanical Design APRIL 2017, Vol. 139 / 041102-7
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
between concepts. For a designer prioritizing sustainability, these
two functional models form the basis for comparing two concep-
tual alternatives within the context of the overall system. The key
results of an FDS analysis are shown in Tables 3and 4.
The following measures are taken to ensure sufficient data can
be extracted from the limited data set. The set of 17 products in
the data set contains only one observation each for the functions
“export electrical energy” and “convert mechanical energy to
electrical energy.” To mitigate this issue, export electrical energy
is considered as “transfer electrical energy.” Additionally, the
function convert mechanical energy to electrical energy is instead
represented as “convert electrical energy to mechanical energy”
based on the general principle that an electric motor driven in
reverse is an electric generator.
5.1 Component Level Guidance. As part of the FDS method,
historical data for components within each function are clustered. In
selecting between different clusters, the designer receives component-
level feedback (3-B) about the impact of a specific choice. For exam-
ple, FDS clusters circuit boards and electric wires into different
groups, where the circuit board group has a much higher historical
impact. This suggests that electric wire or other components in its
cluster should be used where possible. This type of guidance was
shown in greater detail in the mechanical clock example.
5.2 Function Level Guidance. Given the similarity of the
models, many of the best and worst case component selections
produce identical importance rankings. With respect to function-
level guidance (3-A), however, comparing scores for storing
mechanical energy (1.00 10
) against those for storing electrical
energy (2.90 10
) suggests that it will be easier to create a low
environmental impact system by storing energy mechanically.
Additionally, a variety of secondary tests can further inform
design decisions when selecting between replacement functions.
Table 3 Mechanical phone charger 1 results
Component cluster Function Priority Score (maximize) Mean StDev Clusters
Best case Convert electrical to mechanical 2 1.08 10
3.72 10
5.57 10
Import mechanical 3 1.10 10
3.43 10
5.68 10
Store mechanical 1 1.00 10
1.84 10
8.13 10
Supply mechanical 1 1.00 10
1.84 10
8.13 10
Transfer electrical 4 1.58 10
3.84 10
2.48 10
User selected Convert electrical to mechanical 2 8.49 10
1.48 10
1.03 10
Import mechanical 4 1.10 10
3.43 10
5.68 10
Store mechanical 3 1.00 10
1.84 10
8.13 10
Supply mechanical 3 1.00 10
1.84 10
8.13 10
Transfer electrical 1 1.55 10
9.29 10
5.53 10
Worst case Convert electrical to mechanical 2 8.49 10
1.48 10
1.03 10
Import mechanical 4 1.10 10
3.43 10
5.68 10
Store mechanical 3 1.00 10
1.84 10
8.13 10
Supply mechanical 3 1.00 10
1.84 10
8.13 10
Transfer electrical 1 1.36 10
4.91 10
6.84 10
Table 4 Mechanical phone charger 2 results
Component cluster Function Priority Score (maximize) Mean StDev Clusters
Best case Convert electrical to mechanical 2 1.08 10
3.72 10
5.57 10
Import mechanical 3 1.10 10
3.43 10
5.68 10
Store electrical 1 2.90 10
1.44 10
2.00 10
Supply electrical 1 2.90 10
1.44 10
2.00 10
Transfer electrical 4 1.58 10
3.84 10
2.48 10
User selected Convert electrical to mechanical 3 1.08 10
3.72 10
5.57 10
Import mechanical 4 1.10 10
3.43 10
5.68 10
Store electrical 2 2.90 10
1.44 10
2.00 10
Supply electrical 2 2.90 10
1.44 10
2.00 10
Transfer electrical 1 1.55 10
9.29 10
5.53 10
Worst case Convert electrical to mechanical 2 8.49 10
1.48 10
1.03 10
Import mechanical 4 1.10 10
3.43 10
5.68 10
Store electrical 3 2.90 10
1.44 10
2.00 10
Supply electrical 3 2.90 10
1.44 10
2.00 10
Transfer electrical 1 1.36 10
4.91 10
6.84 10
These results can be used to facilitate all three types of design guidance shown in Fig. 1—component-level (3-B), function-level (3-A), and functional
model level (3-C). These strategies are summarized in Table 5
Table 5 Design guidance using FDS
Guidance type Strategy
Component-level By inspection, choose components to satisfy function from historical environmental impact scores
Function-level Create a triangle distribution for each function based on the best case, worst case, and most probable component clusters for
given design context. Compare replacement functions by testing for significant differences between triangle distributions
Functional model-level Compare two models with Mann Whitney U test on models’ environmental impact scores
041102-8 / Vol. 139, APRIL 2017 Transactions of the ASME
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
When generating function hyperdistribution parameters, each
functional concept can be analyzed separately according to its best-
case, worst-case, and most likely (human assessed) component clus-
ters. Human input is critical because it injects contextual information
about the model under investigation. For example, one of the clusters
for transferring electrical energy includes an electric wire, an electric
socket, and brushes (as in a brushed motor). A second cluster con-
tains electromagnets and housings. In the context of phone chargers,
the designer is able to specify that electric wires and sockets are
more likely solutions than electromagnets and housings.
These points can then define a triangular probability density
function (PDF) to support significance tests between the impact of
alternative functions [133]. For example, given two triangular
PDFs for the functions “store electrical” versus “store mechani-
cal,” we can test for whether there exists a significant difference
in environmental impact of replacing one function with the other.
One simple approach is to uniformly resample points from each
PDF, and then perform a Kolmogorov–Smirnov test to determine
whether the difference between replacement functions is signifi-
cant [134,135]. Performing this test for store electrical versus store
mechanical is trivial in the context of this case study because there
is only one component cluster for each function, but doing so with
100 resamples for each returns a significant difference between
functions (p¼1.55 10
). Given a large database with more
samples, this result would be nontrivial to achieve via inspection.
5.3 Model Level Guidance. When comparing two complex
functional models with the same black box function, it may not be
possible to replace functions in a one-to-one manner. For these sit-
uations, a Mann Whitney U test can assess whether the impacts
between models are significantly different [136]. For this test, all
alignable (isomorphic) identical functions should be omitted (e.g.,
“import mechanical” in both models). For the two models in this
case study, a Mann Whitney U test does not provide confidence that
the system-level models are significantly different (p¼0.33). This
suggests that either (1) a finer grained function-level analysis would
be more appropriate (as is the case here) or (2) there is no significant
detectable difference in the models’ predicted environmental impact.
6 Discussion
The FDS method is beneficial to product designers wishing to
optimize environmental impacts of a new product still in the con-
ceptual stages of design. Early conceptual designs can be analyzed
for sustainability using functional model representations of the
designs and the FDS method. Existing design repositories are
used to provide clusters of component solutions to functions.
While the preceding case studies use a subset of product data
from the Design Repository, the method is applicable to any set of
product information that is cataloged according to functions, com-
ponents, and environmental impacts. Designers can then choose
between these functions and components to help minimize envi-
ronmental impacts and maximize sustainability of the product
design. Historical data from existing products provide guidance
on the likely outcome of a new product being designed.
While the FDS method assumes that a design repository will be
populated with similar products to the new product under develop-
ment, there may be benefits to populating a design repository with
existing products that are unrelated to the new product. For
instance, populating a design repository with children’s toys while
designing a new product for an automotive application could pro-
vide new component solutions that are sustainable and satisfy
functional requirements. In this case, the potential of finding a
novel solution increases, while the risk of making an inaccurate
prediction also increases. Care should be exercised to use a dataset
of products that are not so completely unrelated to the new prod-
uct that most component solutions are completely untenable, such
as with attempting to use children’s toys while designing a satel-
lite. While we make no attempt in this work to address the larger
issue of assessing conceptual distance between problems and data-
sets in a sustainability context, a rich database and a metric for
computing pairwise conceptual distance between products would
enable analyses on different database subsets with different inter-
nal similarity cutoffs. The appropriate similarity cutoff between
products in a dataset will likely always depend on the specific
context and application of the sustainability analysis.
Some potential drawbacks to FDS exist, such as the assumption
that the environmental impact of a component is dominated by its
mass (independent of the quantity of components). An extension
of FDS could investigate mitigating this potential limitation using
techniques such as component-specific penalty functions that rep-
resent the increased environmental costs associated with produc-
ing and shipping multiple components. Further, material
sustainability does not always vary linearly with mass, as in the
case of lightweight composites. Another extension of FDS may
add additional layers of hierarchy to the model for the most criti-
cal drivers of sustainability. Given sufficient data, such an exten-
sion may model information at the function–component–process
level instead of the function–component level.
Another issue that practitioners should be aware of with FDS is
that abstracting real world observations into the fuzzy front end of
design introduces error into the FDS methodology. High variation
in a single function–component pair may violate the normality
assumption, and thus, potentially damage the validity of FDS pre-
dictions. The component clustering step is intended to mitigate
this risk such that each cluster can be approximated as a normal
distribution. High variation of this type (and that within a single
function–component pair) would also have the general effect of
increasing the uncertainty within that function, increasing its pri-
ority in the FDS results—a generally desirable behavior. A limited
amount of this type of variation would still produce an actionable
ranking of functions. However, systemic variation of this type
within a given dataset would yield predictions of questionable
validity. In this case, other types of clustering, models, or abstrac-
tions may produce better results.
7 Future Work
Several areas of potential future expansion of the FDS exist
including extensions to the decision support provided by FDS,
applying Bayesian priors to specific important functions, and
applying Bayesian inference to functional or component environ-
mental impact data.
Extensions to the decision support of FDS could include auto-
mated individual function assessment, full functional model com-
parisons, and automated functional model evolution process based
upon sustainability criteria. While FDS currently connects func-
tions to potential component solutions, product designers must
select which component solutions are appropriate for the product.
An automated method of component solution selection may save
designers time and accelerate the new product design process.
Applying Bayesian priors based on the expected mass correspond-
ing to various functions may be useful to skew FDS results toward
the least environmentally impactful component solutions to func-
tional requirements. For instance, if a designer knows that the func-
tion “change mechanical energy” will encapsulate many different
control mechanisms (as in a clock), then, it would be informative to
capture this expectation as a Bayesian prior. Similarly, providing
Bayesian inference to update datasets with information from products
as they are being designed may be useful to help steer development
of other portions of a product or to aid in the development of the
next new product. The method could be further improved by intro-
ducing a method to estimate the data variance of the observed com-
ponents, which in this study was arbitrarily selected.
8 Conclusion
The FDS method presented in this paper helps to address the
growing demand for sustainable consumer products by providing
Journal of Mechanical Design APRIL 2017, Vol. 139 / 041102-9
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
product designers with a tool to assess environmental impact of
functional selections in functional models created during the con-
ceptual phase of product design. Automated guidance on choosing
the most sustainable component solutions for functions is pro-
vided by FDS through a process of clustering and hierarchical
Bayesian modeling. Environmental impact data comes from ReC-
iPe scoring found in SimaPRO, and product decomposition infor-
mation comes from the Design Repository. Existing LCA and
environmental impact assessment methods calculate environmen-
tal impact after a product has been developed to the component
level. FDS assesses environmental impact during the conceptual
phase of design by providing insights into which functional solu-
tions historically have the greatest risk of causing high environ-
mental impact via mean and standard deviation statistics. The
conceptual design of a clock was presented to illustrate the
mechanics of FDS, while the case study of phone charger concept
variants demonstrates the breadth of guidance provided by the
method. Although the dataset used in both case studies is insuffi-
cient to validate FDS, it is sufficient to demonstrate significant
promise of the technique. Given a set of historical data, FDS may
enable a designer to make early functional modeling design deci-
sions specifically based on environmental impact of the product.
This material was based upon the work supported by the
National Science Foundation under Grant Nos. CMMI 0965746
and CMMI 0928076.
[1] Fiksel, J., 2009, Design for Environment: A Guide to Sustainable Product
Development, 2nd ed., McGraw-Hill, New York.
[2] Chiu, M.-C., and Chu, C.-H., 2012, “Review of Sustainable Product Design
from Life Cycle Perspectives,” Int. J. Precis. Eng. Manuf.,13(7),
pp. 1259–1272.
[3] Otto, K., and Wood, K. L., 2000, Product Design: Techniques in Reverse
Engineering and New Product Development, 1st ed., Pearson, Upper Saddle
River, NJ.
[4] Gilchrist, B., Van Bossuyt, D. L., Tumer, I. Y., Arlitt, R., Stone, R. B., and
Haapala, K. R., 2013, “Functional Impact Comparison of Common and Inno-
vative Products,” ASME Paper No. DETC2013-12599.
[5] Short, A., and Van Bossuyt, D., 2015, “Rerouting Failure Flows Using Logic
Blocks in Functional Models for Improved System Robustness: Failure Flow
Decision Functions,” ICED, Milan, Italy, July 27–30, pp. 031–040.
[6] Stack, C., and Van Bossuyt, D., 2015, “Toward a Functional Failure Modeling
Method of Representing Prognostic Systems During the Early Phases of
Design,” ASME Paper No. DETC2015-46400.
[7] Slater, M., and Van Bossuyt, D., 2015, “Toward a Dedicated Failure Flow
Arrestor Function Methodology,” ASME Paper No. DETC2015-46270.
[8] O’Halloran, B., Papakonstantinou, N., and Van Bossuyt, D., 2015, “Modeling
of Function Failure Propagation Across Uncoupled Systems,” 2015 Annual
Reliability and Maintainability Symposium (RAMS), Jan. 26–29.
[9] Design Engineering Laboratory, 2015, “Design Repository,” Oregon State
University Design Engineering Lab, Corvallis, OR, accessed Jan. 12, 2015,
[10] PR
e Sustainability, 2014, “SimaPro,” PR
e Sustainability, Amersfoort, The
Netherlands, accessed June 5, 2014,
[11] Goedkoop, M., Heijungs, R., Huijbregts, M., De Schryver, A., Struijs, J., and
Van Zelm, R., 2009, “ReCiPe 2008,” Ministry of Housing, Spatial Planning,
and the Environment (VROM), Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
[12] Stamatis, D. H., 2003, Failure Mode and Effect Analysis: FMEA from Theory
to Execution, ASQ Quality Press, Milaukee, WI.
[13] Stone, R., and Wood, K., 2000, “Development of a Functional Basis for
Design,” ASME J. Mech. Des.,122(4), pp. 359–370.
[14] McAdams, D., Stone, R., and Wood, K., 1999, “Functional Interdepen dence
and Product Similarity Based on Customer Needs,” Res. Eng. Des.,11(1),
pp. 1–19.
[15] Sauers, L., and Shekhar, M., 2009, “Sustainablity Innovation in the Consumer
Products Industry,” Chem. Eng. Process,105(1), pp. 36–44.
[16] Abele, E., Anderl, R., and Birkhofer, H., 2005 , Environmentally-Friendly
Product Development: Methods and Tools, Springer, London.
[17] European Union, 2003, “Waste Elect ronic and Electrical Equipment,” Euro-
pean Union, Strasbourg, France, Standard No. Directive 2002/96/EC.
[18] European Union, 2003, “Restricti on of Hazardous Substan ces,” European
Union, Strasbourg, France, Standard No. Directive 2002/95/EC.
[19] Cusack, P., and Perrett, T., 2006, “The Eu Rohs Directive and Its Implications
for the Plastics Industry,” Plast., Addit. Compd.,8(3), pp. 46–49.
[20] Arundel, A., and Kemp, R., 2009, “Measuring Eco-Innovation,” UNU-
[21] Otto, K., and Wood, K., 1998, “Product Evolution: A Reverse Engineering
and Redesign Methodology,” Res. Eng. Des.,10(4), pp. 226–243.
[22] Hartikainen, T., Korpela, A., Lehtonen, J., and Mikkonen, R., 2004, “A Com-
parative Life-Cycle Assessment Between NBTI and Copper Magnets,” IEEE
Trans. Appl. Supercond.,14(2), pp. 1882–1885.
[23] Collado-Ruiz, D., and Ostad-Ahmad-Ghorabi, H., 2009, “Comparing LCA
Results out of Competing Products: Developing Reference Ranges From a
Product Family Approach,” J. Cleaner Prod.,18(4), pp. 355–364.
[24] Eastlick, D., Sahaki an, M., and Haapala, K., 2011, “Sustainable Manufactur-
ing Analysis for Titanium Components,” ASME Paper No. DETC2011-48854.
[25] Chang, H., and Chen, J., 2003, “Eco-Innovative Examples for 40 Triz Inven-
tive Principles,” TRIZ J.,2003, pp. 1–16.
[26] Chang, H. T., and Chen, J. L., 2003, “An Eco-Innovative Design Method
Based on Design-Around Approach,” 3rd International Symposium on Envi-
ronmentally Conscious Design and Inverse Manufacturing (EcoDesign’03),
Dec. 8–11, pp. 575–582.
[27] Jones, E., and Harrison, D., 2000, “Investigating the Use of Triz in Eco-
Innovation,” TRIZ J.,2000,p.9.
[28] Chen, J., and Liu, C., 2001, “An Eco-Innovative Design Approach Incorporat-
ing the Triz Method Without Contradiction Analysis,” J. Sustain. Product
Des.,1(4), pp. 263–272.
[29] Yen, S.-B., and Chen, T., 2005, “An Eco-Innovative Tool by Integrating
FMEA and Triz Methods,” Environmentally Conscious Design and Inverse
Manufacturing, IEEE Fourth International Symposium on Eco Design 2005,
Dec. 12–14, pp. 678–683.
[30] Yang, C. J., and Chen, J. L., 2011, “Accelerating Preliminary Eco-Innovation
Design for Products That Integrates Case-Based Reasoning and Triz Method,”
J. Cleaner Prod.,19(9), pp. 998–1006.
[31] Russo, D., Regazzoni, D., and Montecchi, T., 2011, “Eco-Design With Triz
Laws of Evolution,” Procedia Eng.,9, pp. 311–322.
[32] Bocken, N., Allwood, J., Willey, A., and King, J., 2011, “Development of an
Eco-Ideation Tool to Identify Stepwise Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reduction
Options for Consumer Goods,” J. Cleaner Prod.,19(12), pp. 1279–1287.
[33] Yang, C. J., and Chen, J. L., 2012, “Forecasting the Design of Eco-Products
by Integrating Triz Evolution Patterns With CBR and Simple LCA Methods,”
Expert Syst. Appl.,39(3), pp. 2884–2892.
[34] Kitam ura, Y., and Mizoguchi, R., 2004, “Ontology-Based Systematization of
Functional Knowledge,” J. Eng. Des.,15(4), pp. 327–351.
[35] Nix, A. A., Sherrett, B., and Stone, R. B., 2011, “A Function Based Approach
to Triz,” ASME Paper No. DETC2011-47973.
[36] Cascini, G., Rotini, F., and Russo, D., 2009, “Functional Modeling for Triz-
Based Evolutionary Analyses,” 17th International Conference on Engineering
Design, Design Methods and Tools (pt. 1), Palo Alto, CA, Aug. 24–27, Vol. 5,
pp. 371–384.
[37] Yang, K., and Zhang, H., 2000, “A Comparison of Triz and Axiomatic
Design,” TRIZ J.,8.
[38] Zhang, R., Cha, J., and Lu, Y., 2007, “A Conceptual Design Model Using Axi-
omatic Design, Functional Basis and Triz,” IEEE International Conference on
Industrial Engineering and Engineering Management, Dec. 2–4, pp.
[39] Kitamura, Y., Kashiwase, M., Fuse, M., and Mizoguchi, R., 2004,
“Deployment of an Ontological Framework of Functional Design Knowl-
edge,” Adv. Eng. Inf.,18(2), pp. 115–127.
[40] ISO, 2006, “14040: Environmental Management–Life Cycle Assessment–Principles
and Framework,” British Standards Institution, London, Standard No. ISO 14040.
[41] Graedel, T. E., and Graedel, T. E., 1998, Streamlined Life-Cycle Assessment,
Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ.
[42] Kobayashi, H., 2005, “Strategic Evolution of Eco-Products: A Product Life
Cycle Planning Methodology,” Res. Eng. Des.,16(1–2), pp. 1–16.
[43] Azapagic, A., 1999, “Life Cycle Assessment and Its Application to Process
Selection, Design and Optimisation,” Chem. Eng. J.,73(1), pp. 1–21.
[44] Kaebemick, H., Sun, M., and Kara, S., 2003, “Simplified Lifecycle Assess-
ment for the Early Design Stages of Industrial Products,” CIRP Ann. Manuf.
Technol.,52(1), pp. 25–28.
[45] Curran, M. A., 1996, “Environmental Life-Cycle Assessment,” Int. J. Life
Cycle Assess.,1(3), pp. 179–179.
[46] DuPont, B., and Wisthof, A., 2015, “Exploring the Retention of Sustainable
Design Principles in Engineering Practice Through Design Education,” ASME
Paper No. DETC2015-46778.
[47] Keoleian, G. A., 1993, “The Application of Life Cycle Assessment to Design,”
J. Cleaner Prod.,1(3), pp. 143–149.
[48] Chan, L.-K., and Wu, M.-L., 2002, “Quality Function Deployment: A Litera-
ture Review,” Eur. J. Oper. Res.,143(3), pp. 463–497.
[49] Akao, Y., 2004, Quality Function Deployment, Productivity Press, New York.
[50] Sakao, T., 2007, “A QFD-Centered Design Methodology for Environmentally
Conscious Product Design,” Int. J. Prod. Res.,45(18–19), pp. 4143–4162.
[51] Masui, K., Sakao, T., Kobayashi, M., and Inaba, A., 2003, “Applying Quality
Function Deployment to Environmentally Conscious Design,” Int. J. Qual.
Reliab. Manage.,20(1), pp. 90–106.
[52] Sakao, T., Kaneko, K., Masui, K., and Tsubaki, H., 2008, “Combinatorial
Usage of QFDE and LCA for Environmentally Conscious Design,” The Gram-
mar of Technology Development, Springer, Tokyo, pp. 45–59.
[53] Zhang, Y., “Green QFD-II: A Life Cycle Approach for Environmentally Con-
scious Manufacturing by Integrating LCA and LCC into QFD Matrices,” Int.
J. Prod. Res.,37(5), pp. 1075–1091.
041102-10 / Vol. 139, APRIL 2017 Transactions of the ASME
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
[54] Gillespie, E., 2008, “Stemming the Tide of ‘Greenwash’,” Consum. Policy
Rev.,18(3), pp. 79–84.
[55] Stone, R. B., Wood, K. L., and Crawford, R. H., 2000, “Using Quantitative
Functional Models to Develop Product Architectures,” Des. Stud.,21(3),
pp. 239–260.
[56] Bryant, C. R., Stone, R. B., McAdams, D. A., Kurtoglu, T., and Campbell, M.
I., 2005, “Concept Generation From the Functional Basis of Design,” ICED
05: 15th International Conference on Engineering Design: Engineering Design
and the Global Economy, Engineers Australia, p. 1702.
[57] Hirtz, J., Stone, R. B., McAdams, D. A., Szykman, S., and Wood, K. L., 2002,
“A Functional Basis for Engineering Design: Reconciling and Evolving Previ-
ous Efforts,” Res. Eng. Des.,13(2), pp. 65–82.
[58] Hirtz, J. M., Stone, R. B., Szykman, S., McAdams, D., and Wood, K. L., 2001,
“Evolving a Functional Basis for Engineering Design,” ASME Paper No.
[59] Bohm, M., Stone, R., and Szykman, S., 2005, “Enhancing Visual Product Rep-
resentations for Advanced Design Repository Systems,” ASME J. Comput.
Inf. Sci. Eng.,5(4), pp. 360–372.
[60] Bohm, M., Stone, R., Simpson, T., and Steva, E., 2006, “Introduction of a
Data Schema: The Inner Workings of a Design Repository,” ASME Paper No.
[61] Bohm, M., Haapala, K., Poppa, K., Stone, R., and Tumer, I., 2010,
“Integrating Life Cycle Assessment Into the Conceputal Phase of Design
Using a Design Repository,” ASME J. Mech. Des.,132(9), p. 091005.
[62] Lucero, B., Viswanathan, V., Linsey, J., and Turner, C., 2013, “Analysis of
Critical Functionality for Meta Analogy Via Performance Specification,”
ASME Paper No. DETC2013-13472.
[63] Tomko, M., Lucero, B., Turner, C., and Linsey, J., 2015, “Establishing Func-
tional Concepts Vital for Design by Analogy,” IEEE Frontiers in Education
Conference (FIE), Oct. 21–24.
[64] Morgenthaler, P. R., 2016, “Analogy Matching With Function, Flow and Per-
formance,” Ph.D. dissertation, Colorado School of Mines, Arthur Lakes
Library, Golden, CO.
[65] Yuan, L., Liu, Y., Sun, Z., Cao, Y., and Qamar, A., 2016, “A Hybrid Approach
for the Automation of Functional Decomposition in Conceptual Design,”
J. Eng. Des.,27(4–6), pp. 333–360.
[66] Ebro, M., and Howard, T. J., 2016, “Robust Design Principles for Reducing Varia-
tion in Functional Performance,” J. Eng. Des.,27(1–3), pp. 75–92.
[67] Fiorineschi, L., Rotini, F., and Rissone, P., 2016, “A New Conceptual Design
Approach for Overcoming the Flaws of Functional Decomposition and
Morphology,” J. Eng. Des.,27(7), pp. 1–31.
[68] Shimomura, Y., Yoshioka, M., Takeda, H., Umeda, Y., and Tomiyama, T.,
1998, “Representation of Design Object Based on the Functional Evolution
Process Model,” ASME J. Mech. Des.,120(2), pp. 221–229.
[69] Williams, C. B., Mistree, F., and Rosen, D. W., 2011, “A Functional Classifi-
cation Framework for the Conceptual Design of Additive Manufacturing
Technologies,” ASME J. Mech. Des.,133(12), p. 121002.
[70] Gu, C.-C., Hu, J., Peng, Y.-H., and Li, S., 2012, “FCBS Model for Fu nctional
Knowledge Representation in Conceptual Design,” J. Eng. Des.,23(8),
pp. 577–596.
[71] Deng, Y.-M., Tor, S., and Britton, G., 2000, “A Dual-Stage Functional Model-
ling Framework With Multi-Level Design Knowledge for Conceptual
Mechanical Design,” J. Eng. Des.,11(4), pp. 347–375.
[72] Malmiry, R. B., Dantan, J.-Y., Pailhe`s, J., and Antoine, J.-F., 2016, “A
Product Functional Modelling Approach Based on the Energy Flow by
Using Characteristics-Properties Modelling,” J. Eng. Des.,27(12), pp.
[73] Park, H., Son, J.-S., and Lee, K.-H., 2008, “Design Evaluation of Digital Con-
sumer Products Using Virtual Reality-Based Functional Behaviour Simu-
lation,” J. Eng. Des.,19(4), pp. 359–375.
[74] van Eck, D., 2011, “Supporting Design Knowledge Exchange by
Converting Models of Functional Decomposition,” J. Eng. Des.,22(11–12),
pp. 839–858.
[75] Pailhe`s, J., Sallaou, M., Nadeau, J.-P., and Fadel, G. M., 2011, “Energy Based
Functional Decomposition in Preliminary Design,” ASME J. Mech. Des.,
133(5), p. 051011.
[76] Booth, J. W., Reid, T. N., Eckert, C., and Ramani, K., 2015, “Comparing
Functional Analysis Methods for Product Dissection Tasks,” ASME J. Mech.
Des.,137(8), p. 081101.
[77] Sen, C., Caldwell, B. W., Summers, J. D., and Mocko, G. M.,
2010, “Evaluation of the Functional Basis Using an Information The-
oretic Approach,” Artif. Intell. Eng. Des., Anal. Manuf.,24(01), pp.
[78] Sen, C., Summers, J. D., and Mocko, G. M., 2010, “Topological Information
Content and Expressiveness of Function Models in Mechanical Design,”
ASME J. Comput. Inf. Sci. Eng.,10(3), p. 031003.
[79] Caldwell, B. W., Sen, C., Mocko, G. M., and Summers, J. D., 2011, “An
Empirical Study of the Expressiveness of the Functional Basis,” Artif. Intell.
Eng. Des., Anal. Manuf.,25(03), pp. 273–287.
[80] Caldwell, B. W., Sen, C., Mocko, G. M., Summers, J. D., and Fadel, G. M.,
2008, “Empirical Examination of the Functional Basis and Design
Repository,” Design Computing and Cognition’08. Springer, The Netherlands,
pp. 261–280.
[81] Richardson, J., III., Summers, J., and Mocko, G., 2011, “Function Representa-
tions in Morphological Charts: An Experimental Study on Variety and Nov-
elty on Means Generated,” 21st CIRP Design Conference Interdisciplinary
Design, p. 76.
[82] Thomas, J., Sen, C., Mocko, G. M., Summers, J. D., and Fadel, G. M., 2009,
“Investigation of the Interpretability of Three Function Structure Representa-
tions: A User Study,” ASME Paper No. DETC2009-87381.
[83] Sen, C., 2012, “A Formal Representation of Mechanical Functions to Support
Physics-Based Computational Reasoning in Early Mechanical Design,” Ph.D.
dissertation, Clemson University, Clemson, SC.
[84] Sen, C., and Summers, J. D., 2012, “A Pilot Protocol Study on How
Designers Construct Function Structures in Novel Design,” 5th Interna-
tional Conference on Design Computing and Cognition, College Station,
TX, pp. 247–264.
[85] Mathieson, J. L., Shanthakumar, A., Sen, C., Arlitt, R., Summers, J. D., and
Stone, R., 2011, “Complexity as a Surrogate Mapping Between Function Mod-
els and Market Value,” ASME Paper No. DETC2011-47481.
[86] Sen, C., Summers, J. D., and Mocko, G., 2010, “Toward a Formal Representa-
tion of the Functional Basis Verbs,” 8th International Symposium on Tools
and Methods of Competitive Engineering (TMCE).
[87] Lucero, B., Viswanathan, V. K., Linsey, J. S., and Turner, C. J., 2014,
“Identifying Critical Functions for Use Across Engineering Design Domains,”
ASME J. Mech. Des.,136(12), p. 121101.
[88] Viswanathan, V., Ngo, P., Turner, C., and Linsey, J., 2013, “Innovation in
Graduate Projects: Learning to Identify Critical Functions,” IEEE Frontiers in
Education Conference (FIE), Oct. 23–26, pp. 1419–1425.
[89] Stone, R. B., Tumer, I. Y., and Van Wie, M., 2005, “The Function-Failure
Design Method,” ASME J. Mech. Des.,127(3), pp. 397–407.
[90] Stone, R. B., Tumer, I. Y., and Stock, M. E., 2005, “Linking Product Function-
ality to Historic Failures to Improve Failure Analysis in Design,” Res. Eng.
Des.,16(1–2), pp. 96–108.
[91] Tumer, I. Y., Stone, R. B., and Bell, D. G., 2003, “Requirements for a Failure
Mode Taxonomy for Use in Conceptual Design,” ICED 03, The 14th Interna-
tional Conference on Engineering Design, Stockholm, Sweden, Aug. 19–Aug.
23. Paper No. DS31_1612FPB.
[92] Kurtoglu, T., Campbell, M. I., Bryant, C. R., Stone, R. B., and McAdams, D.
A., 2005, “Deriving a Component Basis for Computational Functional Syn-
thesis,” ICED 05: 15th International Conference on Engineering Design: Engi-
neering Design and the Global Economy, Engineers Australia, Paper No.
[93] Hutcheson, R. S., McAdams, D. A., Stone, R. B., and Tumer, I. Y., 2006, “A
Function-Based Methodology for Analyzing Critical Events,” ASME Paper
No. DETC2006-99535.
[94] Ramp, I. J., and Van Bossuyt, D. L., 2014, “Toward an Automated Model-
Based Geometric Method of Representing Function Failure Propagation
Across Uncoupled Systems,” ASME Paper No. IMECE2014-36514.
[95] Kang, S. W., and Tucker, C., 2016, “An Automated Approach to Quantifying
Functional Interactions by Mining Large-Scale Product Specification Data,”
J. Eng. Des.,27(1–3), pp. 1–24.
[96] Chakrabarti, A., Sarkar, P., Leelavathamma, B., and Nataraju, B., 2005, “A
Functional Representation for Aiding Biomimetic and Artificial Inspiration of
New Ideas,” AIEDAM,19(02), pp. 113–132.
[97] Vattam, S., Wiltgen, B., Helms, M., Goel, A. K., and Yen, J., 2011, “Dane:
Fostering Creativity in and Through Biologically Inspired Design,” Design
Creativity 2010, Springer, London, pp. 115–122.
[98] Devanathan, S., Koushik, P., Zhao, F., and Ramani, K., 2009, “Integration of
Sustainability Into Early Design Through Working Knowledge Model and
Visual Tools,” ASME J. Mech. Des.,132(8), p. 081004.
[99] Bernstein, W., Ramanujan, D., Devanathan, S., Zhao, F., Sutherland, J.,
and Ramani, K., 2010, “Function Impact Matrix for Sustainable
Concept Generation: A Designer’s Perspective,” ASME Paper No.
[100] Gilchrist, B., Tumer, I., Stone, R., Gao, Q., and Haapala, K., 2012,
“Comparison of Environmental Impacts of Innovative and Common
Products,” ASME Paper No. DETC2012-70559.
[101] Gelman, A., Carlin, J. B., Stern, H. S., and Rubin, D. B., 2014, Bayesian Data
Analysis, Vol. 2, Taylor & Francis, London.
[102] Chen, J., Hubbard, S. S., Williams, K. H., Flores Orozco, A., and Kemna, A.,
2012, “Estimating the Spatiotemporal Distribution of Geochemical
Parameters Associated With Biostimulation Using Spectral Induced
Polarization Data and Hierarchical Bayesian Models,” Water Resour. Res.,
[103] Tobias, J. L., 2001, “Forecasting Output Growth Rates and Median Output
Growth Rates: A Hierarchical Bayesian Approach,” J. Forecasting,20(5),
pp. 297–314.
[104] Huang, S., and Renals, S., 2010, “Hierarchical Bayesian Language Models for
Conversational Speech Recognition,” IEEE Trans. Audio, Speech, Lang. Pro-
cess.,18(8), pp. 1941–1954.
[105] Taranto, C., Di Mauro, N., and Esposito, F., 2011, “rsLDA: A Bayesian Hier-
archical Model for Relational Learning,” 2011 International Conference on
Data and Knowledge Engineering (ICDKE), Sept. 6, pp. 68–74.
[106] Johnson, V. E., Moosman, A., and Cotter, P., 2005, “A Hierarchical Model for
Estimating the Early Reliability of Complex Systems,” IEEE Trans. Reliab.,
54(2), pp. 224–231.
[107] O’Halloran, B. M., 2013, “A Framework to Model Reliability and Failures in
Complex Systems During the Early Engineering Design Process,” Ph.D. dis-
sertation, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR.
[108] Hoyle, C., Chen, W., Wang, N., and Koppelman, F. S., 2010, “Integrated
Bayesian Hierarchical Choice Modeling to Capture Heterogeneous Consumer
Preferences in Engineering Design,” ASME J. Mech. Des.,132(12),
p. 121010.
Journal of Mechanical Design APRIL 2017, Vol. 139 / 041102-11
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
[109] Beck, J. L., and Au, S.-K., 2002, “Bayesian Updating of Structural Models
and Reliability Using Markov Chain Monte Carlo Simulation,” J. Eng. Mech.,
128(4), pp. 380–391.
[110] Michalek, J. J., Feinberg, F. M., and Papalambros, P. Y., 2005, “Linking Mar-
keting and Engineering Product Design Decisions Via Analytical Target
Cascading*,” J. Prod. Innov. Manage.,22(1), pp. 42–62.
[111] Vadde, S., Allen, J., and Mistree, F., 1994 , “Compromise Decision Support
Problems for Hierarchical Design Involving Uncertainty,” Comput. Struct.,
52(4), pp. 645–658.
[112] O’Halloran, B., Stone, R., and Tumer, I., 2012, “A Failure Modes and Mecha-
nisms Naming Taxonomy,” 2012 Annual Reliability and Maintainability Sym-
posium (RAMS), Jan. 23–26.
[113] Lough, K. G., Stone, R., and Tumer, I. Y., 2009, “The Risk in Early Design
Method,” J. Eng. Des.,20(2), pp. 155–173.
[114] Kurtoglu, T., and Tumer, I. Y., 2008, “A Graph-Based Fault Identification and
Propagation Framework for Functional Design of Complex Systems,” ASME
J. Mech. Des.,130(5), p. 051401.
[115] Kurtoglu, T., Tumer, I. Y., and Jensen, D. C., 2010, “A Functional Failure
Reasoning Methodology for Evaluation of Conceptual System Architectures,”
Res. Eng. Des.,21(4), pp. 209–234.
[116] Collins, J. A., Hagan, B. T., and Bratt, H. H., 1976, “The Failure-Experience
Matrix—A Useful Design Tool,” ASME J. Manuf. Sci. Eng.,98(3),
pp. 1074–1079.
[117] O’Halloran, B., Jensen, D., Tumer, I., Kurtoglu, T., and Stone, R., 2013, “A
Framework to Generate Fault-Based Behavior Models for Complex Systems
Design,” 2013 Annual Reliability and Maintainability Symposium (RAMS),
Jan. 28–31.
[118] Ward, I., Jr., 1963, “Hierarchical Grouping to Optimize An Objective
Function,” J. Am. Stat. Assoc.,58(301), pp. 236–244.
[119] Tanis, E. A., and Hogg, R. V., 2001, Probability and Statistical Infe rence,
Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, NJ.
[120] Polak, P., 2009, Out of Poverty: What Works When Traditional Approaches
Fail, Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Oakland, CA.
[121] Austin-B reneman, J., and Yang, M., 2013, “Design for Micro-Enterprise: An
Approach to Product Design for Emerging Markets,” ASME Paper No.
[122] International Energy Agency, 2016, “Energy Poverty,” International Energy
Agency, Paris, accessed July 27 2016,
[123] Asongu, S. A., 2013, “How Has Mobile Phone Penetration Stimulated Finan-
cial Development in Africa?,” J. Afr. Bus.,14(1), pp. 7–18.
[124] Mbiti, I., and Weil, D. N., 2011, “Mobile Banking: The Impact of m-Pesa in
Kenya,” National Bureau of Economic Research, NBER Working Paper No.
[125] Aker, J. C., and Mbiti, I. M., 2010, “Mobile Phones and Economic Devel op-
ment in Africa,” J. Econ. Perspect.,24(3), pp. 207–232.
[126] Ali, K., Mohd, W. S. W., Rifai, D., Ahmed, M. I., Muzzakir, A., and Asyraf,
T. A., 2016, “Design and Implementation of Portable Mobile Phone Charger
Using Multi Directional Wind Turbine Extract,” Indian J. Sci. Technol.,9(9),
pp. 1–6.
[127] Wyche, S. P., and Murphy, L. L., 2013, “Powering the Cellphone Revolution:
Findings From Mobile Phone Charging Trials in Off-Grid Kenya,” SIGCHI
Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems, Paris, Apr. 27–May 2,
ACM, pp. 1959–1968.
[128] Johnson, N. G., and Granato, M., 2014, “Single Cell Battery Charger for Port-
able Electronic Devices in Developing Countries,” ASME Paper No.
[129] O’Shaughnessy, S., Deasy, M., Kinsella, C., Doyle, J., and Robinson, A., 2013,
“Small Scale Electricity Generation From a Portable Biomass Cookstove: Proto-
type Design and Preliminary Results,” Appl. Energy,102, pp. 374–385.
[130] Tadesse, G., and Bahiigwa, G., 2015, “Mobile Phones and Farmers’ Marketing
Decisions in Ethiopia,” World Dev.,68, pp. 296–307.
[131] Munro, P., van der Horst, G., Willans, S., Kemeny, P., Christiansen, A., and
Schiavone, N., 2016, “Social Enterprise Development and Renewable Energy
Dissemination in Africa: The Experience of the Community Charging Station
Model in Sierra Leone,” Prog. Dev. Stud.,16(1), pp. 24–38.
[132] Asongu, S., 2015, “The Impact of Mobile Phone Penetration on African
Inequality,” Int. J. Soc. Econ.,42(8), pp. 706–716.
[133] Yoe, C., 2011, Principles of Risk Analysis: Decision Making Under Uncer-
tainty, CRC Press, Boca Raton, FL.
[134] Lilliefors, H. W., 1967, “On the Kolmogorov–Smirnov Test for Normality
With Mean and Variance Unknown,” J. Am. Stat. Assoc.,62(318),
pp. 399–402.
[135] Massey, F. J., Jr., 1951, “The Kolmogorov–Smirnov Test for Goodness of
Fit,” J. Am. Stat. Assoc.,46(253), pp. 68–78.
[136] McKnight, P. E., and Najab, J., 2010, “Mann–Whitney U Test,” Corsini Ency-
clopedia of Psychology, Wiley, Hoboken, NJ.
041102-12 / Vol. 139, APRIL 2017 Transactions of the ASME
Downloaded From: on 11/13/2017 Terms of Use:
... Function-based design has been used as a bridge to bring Design-for-X (DfX) objectives, such as Design for the Environment, from post-design analysis to the earlier design phases of product development. To this end, function-based design has been used with life-cycle assessment data to provide functionbased sustainable design knowledge to designers [30,31,32]. In human-centered product design, function has been related to human error and interaction points to determine which functions need special consideration for ergonomics [33,34]. ...
... In the detail design stages, it could aid in verifying the satisfaction of higher-level design requirements [26]. Furthermore, this work could further the development of function-based sustainability methods and other function-related environmental considerations during the early design phases [30,31,87]. A human-centric case study should be conducted to establish a baseline against which the method presented in this work can be evaluated. ...
Function is defined as the ensemble of tasks that enable the product to complete the designed purpose. Functional tools, such as functional modeling, offer decision guidance in the early phase of product design, where explicit design decisions are yet to be made. Function-based design data is often sparse and grounded in individual interpretation. As such, function-based design tools can benefit from automatic function classification to increase data fidelity and provide function representation models that enable function-based intelligent design agents. Function-based design data is commonly stored in manually generated design repositories. These design repositories are a collection of expert knowledge and interpretations of function in product design bounded by function-flow and component taxonomies. In this work, we represent a structured taxonomy-based design repository as assembly-flow graphs, then leverage a graph neural network (GNN) model to perform automatic function classification. We support automated function classification by learning from repository data to establish the ground truth of component function assignment. Experimental results show that our GNN model achieves a micro-average F${_1}$-score of 0.832 for tier 1 (broad), 0.756 for tier 2, and 0.783 for tier 3 (specific) functions. Given the imbalance of data features, the results are encouraging. Our efforts in this paper can be a starting point for more sophisticated applications in knowledge-based CAD systems and Design-for-X consideration in function-based design.
... Research often focuses on the conceptual design phase (referred to in some literature as system architecture [16,17]) of the system design process to implement methods that attempt to make better informed design decisions especially during functional modeling, function-to-component solution mapping, and functionbehavior-structure mapping [18]. Prior work has used methods such as Bayesian hierarchical clustering to help identify the most advantageous component solutions to functions based on information that is brought up into the conceptual design phase which otherwise would be developed much later in the system design process [19]. Methods of analyzing failure, risk, and reliability in systems take a similar approach where detailed failure information is developed early on and used in reliability and risk analyses during conceptual design to promote better risk-informed decision-making which is intended to speed the entire system development process by reducing the need for re-design or the late addition of subsystems to address specific threats or vulnerabilities to the system [20][21][22][23][24]. ...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
We introduce a method to help protect against and mitigate possible consequences of major regional and global events that can disrupt a system design and manufacturing process. The method is intended to be used during the conceptual phase of system design when functional models have been developed and component solutions are being chosen. Disruptive events such as plane crashes killing many engineers from one company travel-ing together, disease outbreaks killing or temporarily disabling many people associated with one industrial sector who travel to the same conference regularly, geopolitical events that impose tariffs or complete cessation of trade with a country that supplies a critical component, and many other similar physical and virtual events can significantly delay or disrupt a system design process. By comparing alternative embodiment, component, and low-level functional solutions, solutions can be identified that better pass the bus factor where no one disruptive event will cause a major delay or disruption to a system design and manufacturing process. We present a simplified case study of a renewable energy generation and storage system intended for residential use to demonstrate the method. While some challenges to immediate adoption by practitioners exist, we believe the method has the potential to significantly improve system design processes so that systems are designed, manufactured, and delivered on schedule and on budget from the perspective of significant dis-ruptive events to design and manufacturing.
... This type of diagram was originally intended for the analysis of a product, and not for design. Functional decomposition evolves from this type of analysis and has been used as a reliable method to generate alternate designs that are later evaluated automatically in terms of the sustainability of the different proposals [37]. There are inherent advantages of applying it early on during the design process. ...
Full-text available
Industry 4.0 (I4.0) is built upon the capabilities of Internet of Things technologies that facilitate the recollection and processing of data. Originally conceived to improve the performance of manufacturing facilities, the field of application for I4.0 has expanded to reach most industrial sectors. To make the best use of the capabilities of I4.0, machine architectures and design paradigms have had to evolve. This is particularly important as the development of certain advanced manufacturing technologies has been passed from large companies to their subsidiaries and suppliers from around the world. This work discusses how design methodologies, such as those based on functional analysis, can incorporate new functions to enhance the architecture of machines. In particular, the article discusses how connectivity facilitates the development of smart manufacturing capabilities through the incorporation of I4.0 principles and resources that in turn improve the computing capacity available to machine controls and edge devices. These concepts are applied to the development of an in-line metrology station for automotive components. The impact on the design of the machine, particularly on the conception of the control, is analyzed. The resulting machine architecture allows for measurement of critical features of all parts as they are processed at the manufacturing floor, a critical operation in smart factories. Finally, this article discusses how the I4.0 infrastructure can be used to collect and process data to obtain useful information about the process.
... For example solid contribution in general methods of conceptual design can be found in studies [2,3,4]. Development and application of graph based mathematical tools for conceptual design are widely described in [5], study by [6] invested considerably in development of networks of large mechanical and social systems. ...
Full-text available
Shock absorbance quality of a hammer handle is an important feature of convenient hammering action avoiding early fatigue because of permanent shock effect in the user’s palm. Despite of large variety of hammers available on the market and immense industrial base for producing those products, still there is no quantified standard to limit, describe and compare shock absorbance quality of different hammers. Two different conceptual solutions are considered to deal with this problem. The whole process of conceptual design (CD) is documented in special formats called design pages and including basic steps of conceptual design: composition, decomposition, modeling, synthesis, visualization and evaluation. A comparative analysis of different methods of conceptual design shows the effectiveness of the applied method in terms of direct dependence between mechanism and function, combined with consideration of links used for building a novel structure and function subject for satisfaction and possibility of extension of concept design procedure for modification and usage of known solutions from database, and so on. Comparative charts for shock absorbance quality of a series of well-known brand hammers and for key features of shock absorbance machines per different design scenarios are presented. The actuality of the presented study is determined by setting conditions and managing conceptual design process for large variety of mechanical devices. A specific cross diagonal matrix is developed to describe the features and work tools of suggested CD process.
... The task-based design methods can be conventionally divided into methodologies based mostly on human participation or on computer-aided methods with minimum involvement of human factor. Some examples for the second group of task-based design methodologies are quite successful when directing a designer to organize a new product development with novel properties [1][2][3]. Very popular and classical methods [4,5] of splitting mechanical components from functional ones have clear abstraction and visualization means and require consideration of a large number of candidate solutions in an attempt to isolate a workable and optimal one. A fundamental publication [6] is using analyses of the vast engineering database as a source for a novel product design, where the search trend implies consideration of either combination of various movements of basic links or direct search of solutions among existing solutions. ...
Full-text available
A novel task-based conceptual design method introduced around a decade ago has been presented from its most characteristic points including the general idea, usage and modification of previous art, usage and modification of independent sets of functional and mechanical means for implementation of those functions, creation of intermediate mechanical-functional sets supporting the development of new structures like models, visualization of the design process, and so on. The current paper aims to reveal a non-computerized graphically visualized set of actions covering all the above-mentioned major steps of the suggested methodology. The success of synthesizing action greatly depends on the method of creation submechanisms or virtual mechanisms, which are making possible visualization and consideration intermediate structures helping to identify and implement a necessary function. The method of creating of such subcategories and application of elementary movements or set of links for explaining or satisfying demanded set of functions could be considered the main methodical novelty and strength of proposed conceptual design method. Two examples are included: the first reinvention of a known tool—Locking Pliers from database and second synthesis of a novel hand tool—Adjustable Nut Wrench.
Function is defined as the ensemble of tasks that enable the product to complete the designed purpose. Functional tools, such as functional modeling, offer decision guidance in the early phase of product design where explicit design decisions are yet to be made. Function-based design data is often sparse and grounded in individual interpretation. As such, function-based design tools can benefit from automatic function classification to increase data fidelity and provide function representation models that enable function-based intelligent design agents. Function- based design data is commonly stored in manually generated design repositories. These design repositories are a collection of expert knowledge and interpretations of function in product design bounded by function-flow and component taxonomies. In this work, we represent a structured taxonomy-based design repository as assembly-flow graphs, then leverage a graph neural network (GNN) model to perform automatic function classification. We support automated function classification by learn- ing from repository data to establish the ground truth of component function assignment. Experimental results show that our GNN model achieves a micro-average F1-score of 0.832 for tier 1 (broad), 0.756 for tier 2, and 0.783 for tier 3 (specific) functions. Given the imbalance of data features, the results are encouraging. Our efforts in this paper can be a starting point for more sophisticated applications in knowledge-based CAD systems, and Design-for-X consideration in function-based design.
While function modeling has been around in engineering design research since the 1960s, there have been no systematic, comparative studies devoted to assessing the adequacy of function modeling frameworks in light of engineering design objectives. This systematic assessment and comparison – called benchmarking – is now recognized as a central research issue in current function modeling research, but insight into how this benchmarking can be done is at present limited. In this paper, we attempt to improve our insight into how benchmarking can be done for a specific but important engineering context: function optimization of reverse-engineered systems. We argue that the capacity to produce technical advantage predictions, viz. predictions concerning the improved functional performance of a redesigned technical system, is an important benchmark criterion in this context. We subsequently illustrate the utility of the criterion by assessing two prominent function modeling frameworks in terms of it. Throughout the paper, we use a case study of the design of an electric wok to clarify and illustrate our ideas.
Digital twin, as a new industrial technology, provides great opportunities in various stages of product development. Product redesign is widely required in the process of product improvement, which is greatly depends on the functional analysis of product. Although traditional functional analysis can identify product design problems, the analyzed information is extremely detailed and verbose, which hinders the opportunity of product innovation. To expand the solution space for improving the innovation chance and ensuring solution quality of the product in the physical space, a digital twin is introduced in the redesign process. This study proposes a product redesign method using the functional backtrack obtained from a relational function model (RFM) to the hierarchical function model (HFM) with the digital twin. Based on a selected target product, the proposed method constructs the product RFM (sub-field) that originates from the reverse fishbone and relationships between components. Related parameters of components are obtained. A digital twin entity is built using the RFM (sub-field) and parameters based on the target physical product, and functions are extracted in the form of “verb + noun.” The RFM is formed considering four relations between functions. Furthermore, functions in the RFM are divided into various levels using the Dempster–Shafer theory based on functional levels and boundaries. In addition, the HFM is formed to indicate the level of problem functions and range area of the solution space. Components and parameters of harmful functions are obtained based on the digital twin entity. Creative ideas of product redesign are generated using the theory of inventive problem solving (TRIZ) to solve inventive problems at different functional levels. Technique for order preference by similarity to an ideal solution (TOPSIS) is introduced to evaluate and select solutions. Finally, the feasibility and effectiveness of the proposed method are verified in the redesign of an antenna mounted on vehicles.
Many objectives of gear design and manufacturing can be considered and resolved by task-based multifunctional conceptual design method developed on the base of long career experience of design and production of numerous custom-made machine tools, innovative hand tools, and other mechanical devices. Requirements of geometrical accuracy and manufacturing efficiency are significant objectives for gear manufacturing technologies and gear chamfering technologies in particular. To satisfy those requirements, the proposed task-based conceptual design methodology is modified and applied in a way to take into account specific needs and features of gear chamfering procedure. The proposed method of conceptual design method can be advantageously pointed out from existing design methodologies by direct consideration of challenged functions at any step of mechanism synthesis, by simultaneous review of several tasks, by similarity and repeatability of analyses and synthesis tools and design cycles, by development and usage of mechanical-functional models, and by quantitative evaluation of different design scenarios. The methodology of creation of gear chamfering mechanisms is serving as an example for extending the scope of application of conceptual, parametric, and analytical resources of the task-based method to the case of surface reproduction technological machines. A concept of multi-degree freedom duplication of different geometrical shapes is the base of methodology for the creation of surface reproduction mechanisms when two parallel chains are providing firstly the geometrical order of surface reproduction and secondly the mechanical set of links necessary for such reproduction. Firstly, an analyzing methodology is applied for consideration and evaluation of various known conceptual diagrams and solutions for the tracking of chamfer surface. Then based on analyses of existing solutions, point and linear models are developed, and, finally, those models are upgraded by additional degrees of freedom and parallel chains to satisfy the remaining challenges and functions. Thus, several design scenarios are created and filtered for evaluation and rejection of not valid solutions. As a result, a series of novel structures are created, and proper manufacturing technology is worked out satisfying different needs of gear chamfering process. The conceptual design phase is commonly preceded by a phase of analyses of existing solutions and proceeded by a phase of parametrical design. Worthy to note that all three procedures are based on the same methodical base which conceptual stage has and hence have the same methodical values and same efficiency in application. An objective of parametric optimization for a type of gear chamfering mechanism is formulated as a requirement of providing a stable surface quality along the involute pattern of gear teeth. Scope of application of the developed methodology of conceptual design is generalized and extended for analyses and synthesis for a class of surface reproduction technological machines. Necessary and clarifying examples are coming to verify the validity and efficiency of task-based conceptual design methodology for surface reproduction and gear chamfering mechanisms.
Full-text available
This paper critically reviewed 106 scientific papers proposing methods to enrich eco-assessment with failure determination and risk assessment. The provided research perspective is new and significantly different from the reviews in the literature which are mostly limited to analyse the environmental impacts of uncertainties and off-design functioning rather than the failures. The analysis, based on the contributions of the literature over more than 20 years, was carried out manually and allowed to identify and classify the application fields, the types of identifiable failures and the approaches used for their determination, for the analysis of their risk of occurrence and for their eco-assessment. The different classifications have also been intersected with each other and all the proposed approaches have been discussed in detail, highlighting the advantages and disadvantages in relation to eco-assessment. From the study emerged a growing and heterogeneous interest on the subject by the scientific community, and a certain independence of the analysed methods with respect to traditional approaches of both failure risk analysis and eco-assessment. Great attention of the methods about product functioning has been highlighted, in addition to the use of tests, simulations, FMEA (failure mode and effect analysis)-based approaches and knowledge databases to determine the failures, while statistical methods are preferred to support risks analysis and LCA (life cycle assessment) for environmental impact calculation. If, in the coming years, this argument also spreads in industry, the results provided by this review could be exploited as a first framework for practitioners. Graphical abstract
In every decision context there are things we know and things we do not know. Risk analysis uses science and the best available evidence to assess what we know-and it is intentional in the way it addresses the importance of the things we don't know. Principles of Risk Analysis: Decision Making Under Uncertainty lays out the tasks of risk analysis in a straightforward, conceptual manner that is consistent with the risk models of all communities of practice. It answers the questions "what is risk analysis?" and "how do I do this?" Distilling the common principles of the many risk tribes and dialects into serviceable definitions and narratives, the book provides a foundation for the practice of risk analysis and decision making under uncertainty for professionals from all walks of life. In the first part of the book, readers learn the language, models, and concepts of risk analysis and its three component tasks-risk management, assessment, and communication. The second part of the book supplies the tools, techniques, and methodologies to help readers apply the principles. From problem identification and brainstorming to model building and choosing a probability distribution, the author walks readers through the how-to of risk assessment. Addressing the critical task of risk communication, he explains how to present the results of assessments and how to develop effective messages. The book's simple and straightforward style-based on the author's decades of experience as a risk analyst, trainer, and educator-strips away the mysterious aura that often accompanies risk analysis. It describes the principles in a manner that empowers readers to begin the practice of risk analysis, to better understand and use the models and practice of their individual fields, and to gain access to the rich and sophisticated professional literature on risk analysis. Additional exercises as well as a free student version of the Palisade Corporation DecisionTools® Suite software and files used in the preparation of this book are available for download.
Product design for emerging markets in the developing world is a rapidly growing field due to a steadily increasing market and an interest in profitably transforming consumer quality of life for this population. Economic and cultural barriers as well as other constraints present a daunting challenge for designers working in this area. This study documents current best practices and proposes a framework for future designers with a focus on creating products that foster micro-enterprise. These guidelines are drawn from existing literature and interviews with practicing designers of products for emerging markets. Four case studies are presented ranging across several product categories.