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TECHNICAL BRIEFS

A Multiattribute Utility Theory-Based Method for Product Line Selection

[+] Author and Article Information
Henri J. Thevenot

Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802henri@psu.edu

Elizabeth D. Steva

Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802elizabeth.steva@gmail.com

Gül E. Okudan

Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802gkremer@psu.edu

Timothy W. Simpson

Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, PA 16802tws8@psu.edu

J. Mech. Des 129(11), 1179-1184 (Jan 12, 2007) (6 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2771574 History: Received June 12, 2006; Revised January 12, 2007

This paper presents a method based on multiattribute utility theory (MAUT) that facilitates the selection of a product line. The method helps select the subset of products to manufacture based on criteria at the: (1) product level (e.g., manufacturing cost, profit); and (2) product family level (e.g., commonality, component reuse, variety, market coverage). An example involving a family of staplers is used to demonstrate the method and to provide a well-documented engineering application of MAUT in product family design.

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Copyright © 2007 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figures

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Figure 1

Proposed method for product family concept selection

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Figure 2

The stapler family and its components

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Figure 3

Choosing certainty equivalent by: (a) expected value of lottery or (b) value assessment

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Figure 4

PCI utility for the families of staplers

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Figure 5

Utility of profit over 5 years for stapler families

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Figure 6

Market segmentation grid for the staplers

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Figure 7

Market coverage utility for families of staplers

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Figure 8

Profit scaling factor decision problem: (a) lottery; and (b) value assessment

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