VISUAL REPRESENTATIONS AS A BRIDGE FOR ENGINEERS AND BIOLOGISTS IN BIO-INSPIRED DESIGN COLLABORATIONS
Editor: Christian Weber, Stephan Husung, Marco Cantamessa, Gaetano Cascini, Dorian Marjanovic, Srinivasan Venkataraman
Author: Hashemi Farzaneh, Helena; Helms, Katharina; Lindemann, Udo
Institution: Technical University Munich, Germany
Section: Design Theory and Research Methodology, Design Processes
In technical product development, engineers address technical problems by developing innovative solutions. An approach to develop ideas with a high potential for technical innovation is bio-inspired design or biomimetics. It implies the transfer of information and knowledge from biology to develop a technical solution. This transfer is a challenge, since engineers do not necessarily have sufficient knowledge in biology. On the other hand, biologists do not necessarily have knowledge in technical product development. Direct collaboration between engineers and biologists can be a solution, but due to the different educational background, misunderstandings can be a barrier. In this work, we develop common visual representations for biologists and engineers to overcome this barrier, based on the analysis of representations in both disciplines. We evaluate the guidelines for modeling technical and biological systems with these common visual representations in tests with engineers and biologists.