Abstract

Today’s highly competitive, global marketplace is redefining the way companies do business. Many companies are being faced with the challenge of providing as much variety as possible for the market with as little variety as possible between products in order to maintain economies of scale while satisfying a wide range of customer requirements. Developing a family of products — a group of related products derived from a common product platform — provides an efficient and effective means to realize sufficient product variety to satisfy a range of customer demands. In this paper the Product Platform Concept Exploration Method (PPCEM) is presented, providing a Method that facilitates the synthesis and Exploration of a common Product Platform Concept that can be scaled into an appropriate family of products. As an example, the PPCEM is employed to design a family of universal electric motors that are also compared against a benchmark group of individually designed motors. The focus in this paper, however, is on the PPCEM and not on the results, per se.

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