2.6 Product Development Process By Steven Eppinger And The Product Development Process

2.6 Product development processes
A development process is a sequence of steps that an enterprise employs to conceive, design and commercialise a product. In this section the different product development processes are analysed and compared. From the analysis and comparison of the processes the most suited process will be chosen and adapted for the execution of this project.
In this section, the product development processes the ‘Generic Process’ by Steven Eppinger, the ‘Stage Gate Process’ by Robert G. Cooper and ‘Total design’ by Stuart Pugh will be analysed and compared.
2.6.1 Generic process - “Eppinger” model
The Generic development process was constructed by Steven D. Eppinger and can be used as a base template for any type of product
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This phase consists of an assessment of technology developments, market objectives and developing a corporate strategy for the project. The outputs of the planning phase are the project mission statement, business goals, key assumptions and constraints.
(1) Concept development phase: The concept development phase begins with identifying the customer needs, the development of product concepts and an evaluation of the product concepts. One or more of the product concepts are selected for further development and testing.
(2) System-level design phase: The system-level design phase includes the definition of the product architecture and the breakdown of the product into subsystems and components. The output of this phase usually includes geometric layouts of the product, functional specifications of each of the products subsystems and preliminary process flow diagrams for the final assembly
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Early (alpha) prototypes are constructed with production-intent parts. These prototypes are then tested to determine whether the product will work as designed and whether the product satisfies the key customer needs. Later (beta) porotypes are extensively evaluated internally and are also typically tested by customers in their own use environment. This is usually to answer questions about performance and reliability in order to identify necessary engineering changes for the final product.
(5) Production ramp-up phase: In the production ramp-up phase, the product is made using the intended production system. Products produces during production ramp-up are sometimes supplied to preferred customers and are carefully evaluated to identify any remaining flaws. The transition from production ramp-up to ongoing production is usually gradual and at some point in this transition the product is launched and becomes available for widespread distribution” (2004).
(Ulrich and Eppinger

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