Hierarchical modularization and dual-domain formation for product adaptability
Product adaptability is the capability to adjust a product by adding/replacing its constitu-ents for different applications. To acquire this capability, a product should be a modular structure that can form different modular combinations. The purpose of this thesis is pro-posing a design method to develop such products. The method includes the following characteristics: a product essentially implements its applications by providing proper ac-tions/reactions to interact with its surrounding conditions; such actions/reactions can be used to develop the subsystems of a product by building energy-flow or force-path con-nections; optional modules can be separated from the subsystems that contain optional applications; all modules are arranged as an open architecture to provide space and inter-face for each optional module; and each module is endued with the principal content of actions/reactions, inside energy flows or force paths, space, and interfaces constraints, so that it can be physically formed through a dual-domain formation process. Following this method, a multi-purpose electric vehicle (MEV) is developed. Adaptability Efficacy (AE) is proposed to evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed method.