Reliance offers a flexible design support service to aid engineers responsible for both new and mature products. Our aim is to provide the designer with relevant data to help them make design decisions confidently and to be assured of the performance they can expect of their product.
Typically, we work as part of the customer's design team to help integrate design analysis and validation activities as a core part of a new product design programme, incorporating both the development and manufacturing stages. We can also work as independent analysts, for example to investigate a performance problem. Customers can specify how they would like to engage with Reliance to best complement their own in-house skills and capacity.
We have the flexibility to work at any stage of a design programme:
- Across a full concept-to-prototype project
- To fine-tune a project at detailed design stage
- To undertake a design optimisation project
- Design analysis at the end of a design project to assess options for future design iterations.
Diagnostic investigation can be a requirement at any point in the product life cycle, but most often we are asked to investigate specific performance issues in the run up to the launch of a new product. At this point time-to-market is a critical factor and the outcome of the analysis a key input into how the launch progresses. The results of any diagnostic investigation are important to commercial and business decision-making, as well as design decisions.A diagnostic programme can include:
- Instrumentation of the mechanism
- Analysis and interpretation of the test data
- Modelling or calculating to investigate possible design solutions
- Rapid manufacture to physically test alternative design solutions
Conclusions and recommendations are discussed at a joint design review with the customer and might include immediate design improvements necessary to meet the essential performance criteria of the specification, design for manufacturing considerations for ease of manufacture and quality/cost improvements, or design options for later revisions of the product.
Design Analysis & Validation
Reliance's design and manufacturing activity, across all our markets, serves customers who make complex performance-critical equipment. All such equipment manufacturers recognise the commercial cost implications of validating the quality and performance of their products. The consequences to the business of poor performance can be significant in terms of failure to meet launch dates, having to repeat the mandatory design approval process with an industry body or third party qualification centre, or even product withdrawal.
Our approach is to integrate design analysis and verification throughout the design process. This allows us to provide the customer's design team with evidence of the quality/performance of the sub-systems we have designed and manufactured for them.
- Calculations/modelling to re-affirm the design concept
- Ensuring appropriate test interfaces are included in the design
- Designing test fixtures to enable accurate performance testing
- Performance testing of critical parts of the sub-system
- Functional testing of the final assembly
- Preparatory validation testing prior to submission to approved test houses, e.g. vibration, thermal and humidity