The engineering process is a set of steps that engineers follow to design and build the product. There are a variety of models of the engineering process that have less or more steps however, most follow a similar pattern. In this article, we will examine a 9-step engineering design process that engineers use to solve specific problems.

The first step in the process of engineering design is to identify the issue. This is an essential step as failing to fully and clearly define the problem could result in delays later on in the design cycle. Most often, the solution to a particular issue will be apparent in this stage. For example when students were tasked to design a way to hold their school lunch hooks onto the bottom of their desks, they came up with a simple solution of attaching a hook to the bottom of the desk.

The next step is to conduct an analysis of requirements to determine the specifics of customer needs and the resources available. This allows you to develop a detailed list of the project’s requirements and constraints. For instance If a client requires their new product to be able to hold 20 pounds an engineer will estimate the amount of weight the system can support and what the size of the hook must be to ensure it can hold all of the student’s lunches.

The next stage is known as design synthesis or design planning. It is where the particulars are formulated and a precise design of the product is developed. This phase involves creating the inputs and outputs of the various modules that make up the system, and their interconnections. Tools used in this phase include Gantt and Pert charts and spreadsheets that load resources as well as sketches, drawings and proof-of-concept models.

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