The most important design decisions are made in the outset of the designing process, when the knowledge about the final design solution is usually scarce and therefore uncertainty is high. According to the independence axiom of Axiomatic Design (AD), design solutions are classified in the following three basic types: uncoupled, decoupled and coupled, the former being the best type and the latter the poorest. As a rule, coupled designs should be avoided, not only because they infringe the independence axiom but also because their information content is hard to compute. Nonetheless, we argue that the occurrence of coupled solutions is noteworthy in general design, although we recognize that they are questionable and that many times they could be easily avoided. Our motivation is to contribute for changing the current state of affairs by showing how to use the minimum information content axiom to make early decisions in the development of coupled designs. One of the general engineering approaches to deal with multiple-FR, multiple-DP designs is the Response Surface Methodology (RSM). We will show in our paper how RSM can be used to deal with coupled designs as if they were uncoupled. The conclusion is that one can graphically compute the information content of coupled designs with two DPs and an arbitrary number of FRs by using multiple RSM. This means that RSM can be interpreted at the light of Axiomatic Design, and embodies an appropriate approach to support decision-making in the case of coupled designs.

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