supporting industrial product Development via applied research

Welcome the research group of Product development at School of Engineering!

We look into ways of understanding, representing, creating, designing, modelling and simulating product-service systems in early phases of the innovation process in order to be able to make informed decisions to achieve sustainable innovation output.

This knoweldge is at the heart of BTH strategy for applied IT and innovation for sustainable growth.

While leaning on the different perspectives on how new products are made, we look into how to support, and develop these processes by using support tools in early phases of the development.
Product Development perspectives

The idea of simulation driven design and innovation has been around for a long time, since computers opened up the possibilities for fast iteration cycles. The whole idea is to setup and run simulations of a product-service system's performance (in all dimensions, i.e. economic/ecologic/social dimensions on sustainability, technical performance, intangible service performance, innovation team performance etc.) early in the design cycle and base design decisions off the resulting outcome. This approach is in contrast to using simulation towards the end of the design cycle, prior to prototype and testing or even just prior to design release, to validate and verify performance of the system, usually only the technical parts of the system. It might seem like a nuanced difference to some, but theoretically it can make a huge difference, since the possibilities to drive innovation and change could come early.

While this approach seems to hold a lot of promise, it's been hard to find many organizations that have put it to use successfully. Why? There are a set of potential reasons, besided the obvious on being lack of methods and tools support, such as cultural or process change push back or a lack of software usability or automation, or basic knowledge on how to deploy simulation driven design for innovation, or what simulation methods that exists.

In the BTH research we focus rationale, methods and tools to support companies to deliver innovative sustainable products and services with higher value to the customers.

We use an approach of early adoption of creative problem solving style and computer simulations in order to ideate, create, estimate, model, and drive development of product-service innovations in an industrial context, hence simulation driven (SDD) product innovation (PI) with a focus on product-service systems (PSS).

With Product Innovation we mean the creation and subsequent introduction of a goods or service that is either new, or improved on previous goods or services of its kind. This in order to both capture innovation and invention aspects in the research, and the possibility to work with continuous improvements (i.e. Lean).

In developing innovative solutions we rely on the participatory product innovation process that we constantly develop through research and innovation projects.