Systems Engineering | CENIT

Systems Engineering No project is too big - let's tackle it!

Systems engineering pursues a holistic approach to the development and operation of complex systems through to their recycling or disposal. The systems engineer coordinates and supervises the interaction of individual working groups. Typical application examples can be found in construction industry and mechanical engineering. While in the construction industry the coordination and monitoring of the individual trades is paramount in order to implement complex structures such as hospitals, concert halls or airports fast and smoothly, in mechanical engineering the coordination of individual assemblies is of major importance.

Interaction of assemblies

The significance of the interaction of assemblies is explained in more detail below using the example of a car. In a car, disturbing resonance effects can easily occur, which can significantly reduce its driving comfort and safety, while the frequencies of the natural vibrations of the engine and chassis are significantly outside the working area.

Profile of requirements

If the client defines a clear requirement profile at the beginning of a project, especially simulations in the early development phase can show, that it has to be changed or extended in individual points, in order to guarantee the desired product property. In this way, simulations can have repercussions on the construction and production of systems.

Interfaces

It is important, for all departments to have access to the same data basis, to implement projects in a short time and as free as possible of errors. This requires the use of software solutions that combine different programs in such a way that the definition and standardization of interfaces is an essential part of the successful systems engineering. If all programs work on the same database, complex systems can also be implemented decentralised with specialists at different locations. This is an indispensable prerequisite for many companies today.

Verification and validation

The last central component in system technology is verification and validation. Related to the simulation, is hereby ensured, that the used models are appropriate to represent the product virtually. With reference to the product itself, is hereby guaranteed, that the imposed requirements be verifiably fulfilled. The product is continuously improved during its life cycle, by using interdisciplinary software and databases within the scope of quality assurance.

The V-Model

The V-model is an established procedure model for the realization of large complex projects. It divides the product life cycle into the areas of system analysis, physical development and system integration. The system analysis is further subdivided into the blocks

  • Requirement definition,
  • Functional analysis,
  • Logical architecture and
  • Component specification

It forms the descending branch of the V-model. After the manufacturing of the product - the physical development - the system integration follows on the ascending branch, divided into the following blocks           

  • Component protection,
  • Integration,
  • Verification and
  • Validation

The V-model stands next to the waterfall model, an alternative model for the description of development processes. It is essential that in the V-model the individual phases can interact with each other, while the waterfall model is developed in strictly separated stages, which are processed successively. With regard to the V-model, can be determined during the validation, for example, that the required profile must be expanded.

Where the waterfall model is suitable for the development of manageable products, large projects can be implemented particularly well with the V-model. While the waterfall model is clearly separated from the task areas, the V-model requires increased training effort for the project team members. This disadvantage can be compensated if interdisciplinary communication is simplified by using nonlocal software solutions that always operate on the same, current database.