Determining Granularity Level in Product Design Architecture

  • Tarek AlGeddawy
  • Hoda ElMaraghy
Part of the Lecture Notes in Production Engineering book series (LNPE)


Product architecture represents components grouped into modules that can be assembled later to constitute a specific variant. Literature provides Methods of clustering components into weakly related modules with strong interconnections between components within modules. The number of modules and their hierarchical relationships shape product architecture and determine the balance between modular design and components integration. A novel hierarchical clustering approach, based on the biological Cladistics analysis, has been developed to cluster Design Structure Matrix (DSM) widely used to promote modularity. It evaluates different granularity levels of the resulting hierarchy and finds the best granularity level for maximum modularity. An automotive Body-in-White of 38 different components is used as a case study. Results showed the superiority of the recommended modularity pattern and synthesized product architecture over other clustering techniques.


Product Design Architecture Modularity Granularity 


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Intelligent Manufacturing Systems CentreUniversity of WindsorOntarioCanada

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