Identifying Product Scaling Principles
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There are countless products that perform the same function but are engineered to suite a different scale. Designers are often faced with the problem of taking a solution at one scale and mapping it to another. This frequently happens with design-by-analogy and bioinspired design. Despite various scaling laws for specific systems, there are no global principles for scaling systems, for example from a biological nano scale to macro scale. This is likely one of the reasons that bioinspired design is difficult. Very often scaling laws assume the same physical principles are being used, but this study of products indicates that a variety of changes occur as scale changes including changing the physical principles to meet a particular function. Empirical product research was used to determine a set of principles by observing and understanding numerous products and natural analogies to unearth new generalizations. The function a product performs is examined at various scales to view subtle and blatant differences. Principles are then determined. A case study validating the principles is also presented. Future work will validate and measure the effectiveness of the principles for design.
Perez, Angel 1986- (2011). Identifying Product Scaling Principles. Master's thesis, Texas A & M University. Available electronically from