Thanks for the input, Naperlou, and I think this will be a really worthwhile show. I'm curious: What's your sense on why this type of discipline hasn't caught on with commercial products and less complex systems? What is your view on the challenges? Any one else care to wade in?
Beth, I am looking forward to the broadcast. Systems engineeing is much more than tracking the engineering products through the process. That is useful, and a good development. There have been tools in the past that were targeted to the systems engineer, and for systems with a large software component they have been around for some time. Systems engineering is about defining the components of a system and their interfaces. Then, once that is done, one must model the proposed system to determine if it makes sense. This may have to be done iteratively until some critical factor has been optimized. Most organizations do not do this. Systems engineering is generally only done for large, complex systems, typically. I am talking about military and space types of programs. If this type of discipline can be brought to more commercial products, I think we will all benefit.
New versions of BASF's Ecovio line are both compostable and designed for either injection molding or thermoforming. These combinations are becoming more common for the single-use bioplastics used in food service and food packaging applications, but are still not widely available.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This radio show will show what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.