Research in Engineering Design

, Volume 10, Issue 4, pp 226–243

Product Evolution: A Reverse Engineering and Redesign Methodology

  • Kevin N. Otto
  • Kristin L. Wood


New products drive business. To remain competitive, industry is continually searching for new methods to evolve their products. To address this need, we introduce a new reverse engineering and redesign methodology. We start by formulating the customer needs, followed by reverse engineering, creating a functional model through teardowns. The functional model leads to specifications that match the customer needs. Depending upon required redesign scope, new features are possibly conceived, or not. Next, models of the specifications are developed and optimized. The new product form is then built and further optimized using designed experiments. An electric wok redesign provides an illustration. The methodology has had a positive impact on results by using a systematic approach, both within design education and industrial applications.

Key words: Redesign; Design methods; Reverse engineering 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag London Limited 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kevin N. Otto
    • 1
  • Kristin L. Wood
    • 2
  1. 1.Engineering Design Research Laboratory, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MAUS
  2. 2.Department of Mechanical Engineering, The University of Texas, Austin, TX, USAUS

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