Virtual prototype simulation case study in mechatronic product development based on systems engineering approach



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Nowadays consumers are demanding products richer in technologies and associated services -- That is why the link between disciplines, such as Engineering Design and Mechatronics, gets stronger each day, especially, due to the different functionalities and features that should be integrated in products in a more articulated manner -- In order to prepare the future generation of engineers, they should be aware and must know the supporting tools recently available in the market to support and automate these interactions among disciplines -- Regular engineering design approaches, start from requirements understanding and end with a physical prototype, passing by conceptual and detailed design -- Nevertheless, the product design process should allow engineering students to forecast product behaviour and its validation through simulation in early design phases, before physical prototyping -- In some cases, complexity increases as products require the integration of technical systems involving mechanics, electronics and control, among others -- Therefore, design concepts cannot be easily tested using a traditional CAD package that needs a physical prototype for validation purposes -- This article presents a case study using a Systems Engineering approach in academia (with RFLP Requirements/Functions/Logical/Physical) to develop a virtual prototype of a mechatronic product, its simulation and validation against data obtained from the real product -- The RFLP method allows engineers to test designs at early design phases by using virtual prototype and virtual simulation, including behaviour and electronics -- Therefore, design concepts can be validated without having the need to build physical prototypes which implies higher costs and manufacturing time -- From the academic point of view, students can be aware that their design concepts will work properly in the real world by performing enriched simulation processes


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R. Mejía-Gutiérrez and R. Carvajal-Arango. “A virtual prototype simulation case study in mechatronic product development based on systems engineering approach" in proceedings of 6th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation (ICERI2013). Seville, Spain. November 18-20 (2013). ISBN: 978-84-616-3847-5