New Book

Constraint-Aided Conceptual Design

Barry O'Sullivan

Professional Engineering Publishing
December 2001

ISBN 1-86058-335-0

About the Book

The product development process is concerned, not only with the design of products, but with how these products are manufactured, distributed and serviced. Engineering conceptual design can be defined as that phase of the product development process during which the designer takes a specification for a product to be designed and generates many broad solutions or "schemes". While it is generally accepted that while conceptual design is one of the most critical phases of the product development process few computer tools exist which provide support to designers working in this stage of the product development process.

Constraint-Aided Conceptual Design offers a new perspective on the conceptual phase of engineering design, developing a constraint-based approach to supporting the human designer. A computational reasoning environment based on the notion of constraint filtering is proposed as the basis of an interactive design support tool to assist an engineer working in the conceptual phase of design. Using this interactive support tool, the designer can be assisted in developing models of proposed schemes that satisfy the various constraints imposed on the design.

The book provides a novel approach to supporting the human designer during the conceptual phase of engineering design. This approach addresses the issue of modelling and reasoning about the design of products from an abstract set of requirements. It also demonstrates how life-cycle knowledge can be incorporated into the conceptual design of a product and how alternative schemes can be compared.

Constraint-Aided Conceptual Design is a fascinating illustration of the impact of computers and computing strategies upon conceptual design. This volume demonstrates the developing impact of computing upon traditional engineering processes and will be of interest to engineering designers, computer scientists, and design researchers concerned with the development of computer-based techniques and systems to support designers. Return to Barry's Homepage