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Technical Paper

Design for Lean Manufacturing

There is great value in applying lean philosophies and methods to the product creation process, especially in today's competitive environment. Customers now demand better quality (especially a better fit with the product's intended use) and new products with even greater frequency than in the past. The integration of lean methodology throughout product creation is an obvious choice as a systematic way of meeting customer demands. Lean methods result in shorter time to market because understanding and meeting customer wants and needs is an integral starting point in the process. A more in-depth use of lean methods results in better quality and a reduced cost of product creation. Because of more frequent product changes, the cost of the product determined during product creation becomes even more critical. Further, if product creation costs are not reduced, the cost to the customer will increase, putting the product and the company in a less competitive position.
Technical Paper

Development of Innovative Design Concepts for Automotive Center Consoles

The objective of the paper is to present a unique design approach and its outputs: the design concepts for automotive center consoles for a near term SUV that can be produced in 2-3 years, and the second for, a more futuristic SUV, that could be produced in 10 or more years. In the first phase of this two phase project, we benchmarked center consoles from a number of existing and concept vehicles, analyzed available data (e.g. J.D. Power customer feedback surveys), and conducted studies (e.g. survey of items stored in the vehicles, item location preferences in the console area) to understand customer/user needs in designing the center consoles. In the second phase, we provided the information generated in the first phase to four groups of student teams who competed to create winning designs of the center consoles.
Technical Paper

Interior Design Process for UM-D's Low Mass Vehicle

This paper describes a unique interior design and multidisciplinary process implemented by the faculty and students to develop the interior for a Low Mass Vehicle (LMV). The 103 inch LMV was designed with the goal of about 30% reduction in weight than a typical class C segment vehicle and would require low investment in manufacturing. In the early stages of the program, the UM-Dearborn team developed detailed requirements of the vehicle interior based on the vehicle's exterior developed using a similar process. The requirements were given to a senior class of automotive design students from the College of Creative Studies in Detroit to create different interior design themes. Approximately twenty-five interior design themes were judged by a panel of automotive industry experts, and a winning design was selected.
Technical Paper

Parametric Approach for Development of an Automotive Bucket Seat Frame

This paper presents a design and development approach for automotive bucket seat frame using a parametric modeling and a finite element analysis methodology. This approach is expected to help build a lightweight seat structure quickly and efficiently. This approach is general, and it can be applied in designing and developing any mechanical structural component. The design process involves, first parametric modeling of the front bucket seat frame using Pro E. This CAD model was then optimized using optimization software called Optistruct, for two cases of load case and boundary condition. The optimized design was then tested for FMVSS seat requirements using LS-DYNA. The dynamic nature of the design approach helps in changing design parameters during different stages of the design process, until the seat structure satisfies the design criteria and the strength requirements. The construction and testing of this design and the design model are still under progress.