Tunnel design

Tunnel design

To design a tunnel, designers of several disciplines need to coordinate their work. This post describes a scientific case study of how to produce an integrated design more efficiently.

Request

Need

Sector
Manufacturing

Civil engineering

Design practice
Tunnel design

Designing a tunnel requires seven disciplines working together

Advantage
Improvement

As the concepts for a tunnel are pretty much fixed, designers seek to improve on a suitable existing concept

Motivation
Reduce amount of design rework

Given the multi-disciplinary nature of tunnel design, the main challenge is to reduce the time needed to resolve conflicts between partial designs

Ambition
Efficiently produce an integrated design

Make designers from different disciplines work together efficiently

Design performance

Number of issues
1

Based on performance indicators and status reports

Indicator
[Time] Effort to resolve conflicts between partial designs

Status
Issue

Unit
Percentage of the total amount of design hours in a project

Goal
10 or less

Reality
15

Assessment

Focus

Area
Design coordination

The better coordination is, the less time needs to be spent on resolving conflicts between partial designs

Filter
Essential and scarce knowledge

Here lie the determinant factors for the quality of coordination

Development objectives

Number of objectives
1

Based on performance issues and a knowledge analysis

Knowledge
[Systems] Capture relationships between design elements

Development objective
Attract

Type
Implicit

Character
Stable

Origin
Study

Occurrence
Not unique

Advice

Proposal

Number of proposed tasks
3

Based on an assessment

Task
Define design ontology

Status
Proposal

Method
Interview designers

Actor
Knowledge engineer

Focus
Capture relationships between design elements

Task
Create meta-model of design

Status
Proposal

Method
Represent design ontology in a repository

Actor
Knowledge engineer

Focus
Capture relationships between design elements

Task
Teach using a repository for designing

Status
Proposal

Method
Train designers

Actor
Knowledge engineer

Focus
Capture relationships between design elements

Performance estimates

Number of estimates
1

Based on performance indicators and expected effects of task execution

Indicator
[Time] Effort to resolve conflicts between partial designs

Status
Estimate

Unit
Percentage of the total amount of design hours in a project

Goal
10 or less

Plan
10