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Taguchi Methods: Benefits, Impacts, Mathematics, Statistics and Applications

By
Teruo Mori, PhD
Teruo Mori, PhD
PE
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Shih-Chung Tsai, PhD
Shih-Chung Tsai, PhD
CQE
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ISBN:
9780791859698
No. of Pages:
1060
Publisher:
ASME Press
Publication date:
2011

A quality control department is usually responsible for downstream quality problems such as defects and warranty claims. The countermeasures to these quality problems are commonly referred to as “troubleshooting.” However, troubleshooting in a company seldom reduces the number of future troubleshooting activities since it doesn't address the root causes of quality problems. Troubleshooting is not efficient in resolving downstream quality problems. To reduce the number of defects or warranty claims, focus engineering resources on upstream design activities to resolve quality issues at early stages of development.

The fundamentals of traditional quality control activities are based on statistical analysis methods as well as on the assumption that quality data already exists. Engineers should move from quality inspection activities to upstream design in order to improve their systems (design subjects) and the energy transformation functions of these systems. The reason for moving upstream is to prevent downstream quality problems at early research and development stages. It is too late to wait until quality problems occur. Troubleshooting is similar to firefighting, which happens after the fact. It is well understood that any manufacturing company should prevent downstream quality problems instead of conducting downstream activities to resolve quality problems after they occur.

In U.S. manufacturing plants, it is common to use statisticians in quality control departments to analyze cause-effect relationships between quality defects of end products and material or process variation. In fact, these statistical analyses are similar to the firefighting activities mentioned above, but with a high rate of accuracy. Statistical process control activities need a lot of measurement data from actual production processes. These measurements are related to the assessment of reliability. The eventual goal of quality control is to reduce the number of defects by keeping the material and process variation in control through various online management activities in production plants.

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