A Case Study: Improvements in Automotive Motion Simulators Using Six Sigma Methodologies 2007-01-0533
Newer automobiles have complex dynamic and stability controls due to regulations, competition, and safety concerns. More systems require testing at the subcomponent level to ensure proper operation in the final vehicle assembly. Many of the stability and navigation features originally designed for aircraft components are now being incorporated into automobiles. Certain types of motion test simulators were originally designed for testing aircraft sensors as: gyroscopes, inertial navigation systems (INS), inertial measurement units (IMU), and attitude heading and reference systems (AHARS) This same type of equipment is now used for automotive testing as: airbag fuse sensors, anti-skid sensors, rollover sensors, vehicle stabilization systems, active suspension sensors, and navigation systems.
Implementation of the Six Sigma Process at Ideal Aerosmith has ensured a positive migration path to allow the current experience in aerospace technology to flow into the automotive test systems to meet the high standards of quality and reliability in the higher-paced automotive production environment. This added test complexity in the automotive area needed a lower cost structure that required a quality methodology as the Six Sigma Process. This paper presents a summary of the planned and actual metrics to produce the desired results. Measurements of schedule, rework, customer satisfaction, quality, and performance are presented.