Modular product family development within a SME

Barry Stewart, Xiu Tian Yan

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution book

4 Citations (Scopus)


Product variation is becoming an important factor in companies' ability to accurately meet customer requirements. Ever increasing consumer options mean that customers have more choice than ever before which puts commercial pressures on companies to continue to diversify. This can be a particular problem within Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) who do not always have the level resources to meet these requirements. As such, methods are required that provide means for companies to be able to produce a wide range of products at the lowest cost and shortest time. This paper details a new modular product design methodology that provides a focus on developing modular product families. The methodology's function is described and a case study detailed of how it was used within a SME to define the company's product portfolio and create a new Generic Product Function Structure from which a new family of product variants can be developed. The methodology lends itself to modular re-use which has the potential to support rapid development and configuration of product variants.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationGlobal Design to Gain a Competitive Edge
Subtitle of host publicationAn Holistic and Collaborative Design Approach Based on Computational Tools
EditorsXiu-Tian Yan, Benoit Eynard, William J. Ion
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)9781848002388
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008
EventInternational Conference on Advanced Design and Manufacture (ICADAM 2008) - , China
Duration: 1 Jan 2008 → …


ConferenceInternational Conference on Advanced Design and Manufacture (ICADAM 2008)
Period1/01/08 → …


  • methodology
  • modules
  • product family
  • SME
  • computational methods
  • commercial pressure
  • customer requirements
  • generic products
  • modular product design
  • modular products
  • product portfolios
  • product variants
  • rapid development


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