The engineering design process is a powerful framework to devise solutions for all types of problems. In this blog post, we outline the seven steps of the engineering design process, one of the most popular versions of this method.
What Is the Engineering Design Process?
As we have seen in previous posts, the engineering design process is a series of steps aimed at arriving at an engineering solution to a problem.
Although the concept and basic goals remain the same, there are different versions of the engineering design process.
For example, NASA has a six-step engineering design process aimed at children. The steps are: ask, imagine, plan, create, experiment, and improve.
Other authors, for their part, propose a 12-step process: define the problem, brainstorm, research, specify constraints, explore possibilities, select an approach, develop a design proposal, make a prototype, test the design, refine the design, create the product, and communicate results.
However, the 7-step engineering design process remains one of the most popular. Let’s see why.
What Are the 7 Steps of the Engineering Design Process?
A 7-step engineering design process is a reasonable compromise between the more simplified versions of the process (four to six steps) and the more detailed ones (ten or more steps).
These are the seven steps of the engineering design process. Keep in mind that the name of each step may vary depending on the author:
- 1. Define the problem. What need are you trying to fulfill? What will be the main goals of the project?
- 2. Conduct research. Carry out competitive analysis of similar projects. Why would a user choose your project? What are the alternatives available?
- 3. Brainstorm. Get your team together and identify together the best features to include in the project.
- 4. Create a prototype. Build a working model of your product to test your ideas and see them in action.
- 5. Build the product. Use the insights gleaned during the previous phase to build the product.
- 6. Product analysis. Gather and analyze the feedback from the users of your product. Study how your product fares against its competitors.
- 7. Refine and improve. Polish up your product user feedback, competitor analysis, and sales figures,
Learn More About Engineering Design
Engineering design is a fascinating discipline integral to our everyday lives. Below are some previous posts you can read to learn more about this interesting topic.
- What is a kaizen event?
- What is civil engineering design?
- What is the engineering design process?
- Do good design engineers make good project managers?
Darnell Technical Services is an engineering design firm with extensive experience in a vast array of projects. Our headquarters are located in Santa Ana, California, and we have an office in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Contact us today by telephone (714-285-0082 (CA), 702-945-2899 (NV)) or through our social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn to learn more about all the technical instruments and materials we put at your disposal.