Development of product modularity creation method using product worth flow analysis with technology uncertainty

Toshiharu Miwa, Hideki Aoyama

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The acceleration of the product development cycle continues to be a significant challenge for manufacturing firms around the world. The present paper describes a product modularity creation method of product components that takes the uncertain relationships among the product components into consideration in order to reduce the development time in large-scale and complicated product development with technology uncertainty at the early stage of product development. We developed a probabilistic product worth flow analysis to evaluate each product component for prioritization with an uncertain relationship among product components. The product worth flow is defined as the development risk leading to the development delay. The method calculates the probabilistic distribution of worth flow of each product component based on the probabilistic relationship among product components with the Monte Carlo simulation and determines the priority of each component so as to minimize the variance of the feedback information across the product modules. The paper shows an example of a generic hair drier with a simple mechanical structure that this proposed method contributes to the reduction of the uncertainty of feedback information across the product modules by 61% compared to the conventional planning methods while maintaining the uncertainty within same product modules.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3926-3937
Number of pages12
JournalNihon Kikai Gakkai Ronbunshu, C Hen/Transactions of the Japan Society of Mechanical Engineers, Part C
Issue number782
Publication statusPublished - 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • Design structure matrix
  • Quality function deployment
  • Technology uncertainty
  • Worth flow

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Mechanics of Materials
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering


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