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First of all, writing an ERD enables collaboration. It helps to break down a large project into smaller tasks so you can then delegate out the tasks to team members, giving everyone a clear area of responsibility. Comparatively isolated modules can be outsourced if internal resources are constrained.
Writing an ERD can also reduce miscommunication between product, design, and engineering teams. After a draft has been written, the product and design teams can read the ERD and check those assumptions, ensuring product and design intent are sufficiently captured.
Lastly, writing the ERD is the first step in establishing a sound test plan. Any performance requirements listed in the ERD need corresponding tests to verify them.
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Why require something if it cannot or will not be tested? The PRD calls for 7 days of battery life. This spec needs to be translated into battery capacity in amp-hours. Both engineering and product need to agree on that answer. The PRD also says that the speakers should be bass-heavy.
To an audio engineer, this translates to a set of frequency response graphs with certain shape—these graphs will be the engineering specification. The DAC digital-analog converter and mechanical enclosure both have impact on the frequency response and they will be designed to meet the audio specification.
Identify cross functional dependencies The previous example showed that achieving each product feature involves the collaboration of multiple disciplines; the ERD should document how mechanical and electrical components work together. Take our speaker for example again: A mechanical engineer will design the physical buttons, choose the switches underneath, decide how to mount the switch PCBAs, and give an electrical engineer the PCB footprint and switch pad locations so he can do the schematics and layout.
The ERD should capture the division of responsibility for each feature of the product. The industrial design spec usually comes in the form of a surface CAD model and a CMF color, material, finish document.
The surface model needs to be converted to a solid CAD model, and the CMF document needs to be translated into a mechanical engineering spec.
Color Has the industrial designer called out a Pantone number?
White is notoriously hard to get right, and Pantone C is not suitable for communicating exactly what kind of white you want. Durability and performance characteristics from the PRD will inform the choice.
Sometimes we can get away with metallic vapor deposition over plastic to achieve a metal appearance, or using sheet metal trim over plastic structure. However, if solid metal components are called for often to suggest higher qualitywe have to determine whether to use casting, CNC machining, or metal injection molding to produce the parts.
Finish The texture of the product enclosure can be achieved in a multitude of ways. Specific painting, blasting, brushing, and polishing techniques can be worked out with the contract manufacturer at a later stage.
If the plastic parts require texturing, in-mold is a good way to go. You, the engineer, can ask the industrial designer to choose a swatch out of a Mold-tech or Yick Sang texture catalogue and give this number to the mold maker.Choose Kingston's Mechanical Engineering MSc. This course, accredited by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, is designed to provide you with the latest technological knowledge and industrial management skills, at an advanced level of study, in specific aspects of mechanical engineering that are in demand from industry.
For complex products with dozens of requirements or more, engineers supplement the design brief with detailed specifications such as a product requirements document (PRD) or a product design specification (PDS).
Division 01 Rev. 02/15 01 00 00 General Requirements PWWM Specifications TOC-1 PWWM SPECIFICATIONS GENERAL REQUIREMENTS TABLE OF CONTENTS. An Engineering Requirements Document specifies how a product will be built in order to fulfill the PRD’s multitude of wishes.
The effort of writing this document is usually led by a system architect or engineering lead, but it’s essential that engineers from all disciplines (mechanical, electrical, firmware) contribute. You seem to live in a world of hacking together toy software.
One day when you become a software ENGINEER who has to build complex, long-lived software as part of a team of people, following modern engineering practices (model-driven development, design-by-contract), upon which people's well-being depends, you will change your tune, I suspect.
Many things rely on mechanical engineering – from mobile phones and biomedical devices, to aircraft and power plants. If you're ready to take your engineering studies further, our MSc Mechanical Engineering degree course will give you the skills you need to advance your career.