Colloquium announcement

Faculty of Engineering Technology

Department Design, Production and Management
Master programme Industrial Design Engineering

As part of his / her masterassignment

Harrie Waasdorp

will hold a speech entitled:

Feature-based Revision and Variety Management



During the last decade, manufacturers have actively developed systems to let customers personalise their products. By means of these systems, the customers are offered a number of options to tailor the product to his or her individual needs. In many markets personalisation has become standard practice. However, not all manufacturers offer the opportunity to personalise products. Whether or not customers are provided with the opportunity to personalise their products depends, among others, on whether the processes of the manufacturer are able to cope with product variations. Personalisation generates product variety, and not every manufacturing process can handle product variety with the same ease.

Product variety becomes increasingly difficult to manage when products and processes become more complex. The operational effects are widespread throughout the manufacturing environment, resulting in many processes being influenced by a single variation. In this colloquium, the operational effects of implementing product variety are explained. Four primary phases of manufacturing (Design, Planning, Fabrication and Assembly) are highlighted. For these phases, the effects of product variety are explained in detail. Following this, three key issues (transboundary impact, combinatorial explosion and replication) are defined. These key issues must be made manageable to limit the negative effects of product variety on manufacturing.

With the three key issues in mind, an object-oriented model is presented to manage product variety. The model, named the Integrated Manufacturing Model, provides insights in the variety and commonality between objects. Likewise, the Integrated Manufacturing Model provides insights in the effects of variety on manufacturing processes. Furthermore, the method provides actors of different manufacturing phases to actively participate in the (re)design process. As such, actors can provide expert input during decision making processes.