Daniel A. McAdams

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In engineering design, all products and artifacts have some intended reason behind their existence: the product or artifact function. Functional modeling provides an abstract, yet direct, method for understanding and representing an overall product or artifact function. Functional modeling also strategically guides design activities such as problem(More)
The current version of the Concept Generator, an automated mathematically-based design tool, is studied in an effort to validate its general approach and establish research goals for further development. As part of the study, four undergraduate engineering researchers from the University of Missouri-Rolla and University of Texas at Austin execute a(More)
Few computational tools exist to assist designers during the conceptual phase of design, and design success is often heavily weighted on personal experience and innate ability. Many well-known methods (e.g. brainstorming, intrinsic and extrinsic searches, and morphological analysis) are designed to stimulate a designer’s creativity, but ultimately still(More)
In an attempt to reduce product design time, engineers are currently exploring alternative ways to design and engineer their products. In the next century, tools that are able to capture general knowledge about the design process will replace the CAD tools currently used in engineering design. These new tools will capture not only a geometric representation(More)
Functional models are representations of the energy, material and signal transformations that occur through the expected or normal operating condition of a product. As the complexity of products increases, there are often multiple dimensions to their operation in addition to their nominal operating state, e.g., crash protection systems in a car or laser(More)
The natural world provides numerous cases for inspiration in engineering design. Biological organisms, phenomena, and strategies, which we refer to as biological systems, provide a rich set of analogies. These systems provide insight into sustainable and adaptable design and offer engineers billions of years of valuable experience, which can be used to(More)
The natural world provides numerous cases for analogy and inspiration. From simple cases such as hook and latch attachments to articulated-wing flying vehicles, nature provides many sources for ideas. Though biological systems provide a wealth of elegant and ingenious approaches to problem solving, there are challenges that prevent designers from leveraging(More)
This paper explores combining functional modeling and biomimetic design. Observed benefits of applying functional modeling to biomimetic design include a more complete, systematic modeling that reveals additional aspects of biological phenomena to be exploited. Incorporating biological phenomena into a function-based design repository requires that multiple(More)
In this paper, we present our findings on the development of a taxonomy for electromechanical components. In building this taxonomy, we have two main objectives: First, we strive to establish a framework for future computational tools that archive, search, or reuse component knowledge during the conceptual phase of design. Second, we aim to define a(More)