Earlier every hatch cover solution was custom-designed from start to finish. The process was time-consuming including up to 200 drawings and calculations for the individual design of every part. In new parametric and configurable hatch cover model hundreds of customer requirements are compressed to a few dozen parameters. Dozens of parameters such as wave load can be selected from the configuration menu. A typical project needs four separate configurations. Computer model finds an optimal customized solution by analyzing data systemically and quickly, and about 30 drawings are automatically produced from each hatch model, which fully descripe the design for the shipyard, manufacturing and the ship classification society.
Shipbuilding is a typical example of project-based business, where daily business is driven primarily by individual customer projects; these customer-specific projects are nevertheless typically based on modifications of previous deliveries. This approach has its effect on the management of technological solutions. In project-based businesses, management of product technologies (from applied solutions to detailed component designs) has traditionally been seen as an integrated part of the customer projects. The main challenge that arises is uncontrolled variation between individual projects and the lack of top-level, well-defined solutions (e.g. product platforms). The target within this project was to develop platform management methods, tools, processes and organisations for the shipbuilding business environment – namely ship hatch covers.
As a result of this project, design time was reduced significantly from 8 weeks to a fraction of that. Shortening the process speeds the purchase of critical parts bringing competitive advantage, increasing productivity and saving costs. In addition new parametric and configurable hatch cover model increases customer value, enhances quality and reduce overall costs as the need for project-specific management is decreased.
Variantum Oy, STX Finland Cabins Oy, VAK Oy, Tampere University of Technology, Nordic Element Oy, CadON Oy, Tacton Systems AB, Sance Oy, Agostoplan Oy.