Aircraft design

Aircraft design

The design of a series aircraft is often based on that of a predecessor in the same series. This article describes a scientific case study of how to design a series aircraft more quickly.

Request

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Design service

Series aircraft design

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Situation

Junior designers struggle to design a successor. Progress is slowing down whenever there are no senior designers looking over their shoulder, or to spar with them.

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Challenge

[Improving a design service, Advancing a design team] What can junior designers learn from senior designers to design a successor?

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Ambition

[Time] Junior designers design a successor more quickly. This is desirable, feasible, and viable.

Assessment

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Design service

Series aircraft design

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Competitive position

[Weakness] Unlike senior designers, junior designers do not know well how to design a successor.

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Problem

[System] What junior designers can learn from senior designers to design a successor is to make use of the design rationale of earlier aircraft in the same series. This capability is valuable but not organized: junior designers do not have it. They can develop it, and its nature is implicit. Prognosis:

  • Unfavorable without intervention.
  • Favorable after an intervention.

Advice

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Design service

Series aircraft design

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Concept

[System] Teach junior designers how to make use of the design rationale of earlier aircraft in the same series.

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Intervention

Step 1. Define how to make use of the design rationale of earlier aircraft in the same series: have a knowledge engineer interview senior designers to extract knowledge of the way of working to retrieve, reuse, revise, and retain design rationale.

Step 2. Transfer knowledge of how to make use of the design rationale of earlier aircraft in the same series: have senior designers train junior designers in the way of working.

Background research

Frances Brazier, Pieter van Langen, and Jan Treur (1997). A compositional approach to modelling design rationale. AIEDAM 11, 125-139.