PLM support for development of modular product families

DS 75-4: Proceedings of the 19th International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED13), Design for Harmonies, Vol.4: Product, Service and Systems Design , Seoul, Korea, 19-22.08.2013

Year: 2013
Editor: Udo Lindemann, Srinivasan V, Yong Se Kim, Sang Won Lee, John Clarkson, Gaetano Cascini
Author: Bruun, Hans Peter Lomholt; Mortensen, Niels Henrik; Harlou, Ulf
Series: ICED
Institution: 1: Technical University of Denmark, Denmark; 2: Center for Product Customization
Page(s): 379-388
ISBN: 978-1-904670-47-6
ISSN: 2220-4334


Most modern manufacturing companies use a PLM/PDM system for documenting and managing product data. Companies use their PLM/PDM system for management of CAD files, documents, and drawings, but they do not take advantage of the full potential of the system to support modularisation. The objective of this research is to develop an approach for improving the role of PLM/PDM systems as supporting tools for developing modular product families. The approach is based on a visual product architecture model; representing a product family seen from a functional system perspective and a physical modular perspective. By means of a software program, product structures visual modelled can be imported to a PLM system, forming so called upper structures. Data associativity between upper structures in the PLM system and CAD models is described, as well as other types of associated product information. The key result of the research is the approach of using companies’ PLM systems to build up and define product structures that support the activities of creating modular product families.

Keywords: Product families, product lifecycle management, product architecture, modularity, interface management


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