Concurrent engineering approach to plastic optics design
1University of Oulu, Faculty of Technology, Department of Electrical and Information Engineering, Optoelectronics and Measurement Techniques Laboratory
Espoo : VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland,
|Academic dissertation to be presented with the assent of the Faculty
of Technology of the University of Oulu for public defence in OP-sali
(Auditorium L10), Linnanmaa, on February 4th, 2011, at 12 o’clock noon.
Docent Jani Tervo
Doctor Jyrki Saarinen
Professor Risto Myllylä
Engineering can be seen as a balancing act in which several partially of fully conflicting needs have to be satisfied with one single solution. Concurrent engineering (CE) is a philosophy that aims for better products by improving the different design processes inside the whole development process. This is achieved by emphasizing holistic thinking.
In this thesis the most relevant terms and definitions of CE and product design are compiled into one literary work. In the context of product design, optical design has to be considered as a broader entity that embodies the holistic nature of engineering. The first major contribution of this thesis is the sketching of the basic optical design and development process and its connection to the larger frameworks of product design and CE. The emphasis is on the implementation of the philosophical ideas in practice.
Two major aspects that need to be balanced in every product are performance and cost. Design for manufacturing (DFM) is an engineering concept that guides the design process towards better consideration of manufacturing issues. It lies at the core of CE and its purpose is to reduce the costs of manufacturing by fitting the product features and manufacturing processes together. The second major contribution of this thesis is to show how this connection can be made in the field of injection-moulded optics.
In order to make the treated topics more concrete, seven optical design case studies are presented and their specific CE features highlighted. The presented applications range from consumer electronics to telecommunications and solar energy, whereas the example component and module designs vary from low performance illumination optics to relatively high performance imaging lenses. All the case studies have been published in Papers I–VI included in this thesis.