Mechatronics : from systems combination to business integration

Koch, Christian (Haute école d’ingénierie et de gestion du canton de Vaud, HES-SO // Haute Ecole Spécialisée de Suisse Occidentale) ; et al.

Even if the mechatronics approach has been around for decades, many companies are still struggling with realising the business potential inherent in successful combination , or even integration of enabling technologies in systems for mechanical, computing, metrology, and control topics. And the challenges are not only linked to combining systems, but also to realise them as products and create business value doing it. This paper takes an investigative stance and study a systems and product development process, asking what enablers and barriers it encompasses for realising an integrated mechatronics business. The case is development of wind turbines and their control systems. The SME, with long term experience in doing control systems for one turbine manufacturer, was approached by another with rather different ideas for the combined product, the wind turbine system. Through an ethnographic study the collaboration process in t he multinational project organisation established was followed. The case study shows how several types of engineering, sales, managerial and manufacturing concerns are woven together, but also disrupted several times. The transformation of a sales oriented (product) specification into technical specification proves problematic, issues of protection of company critical competences occurs, as well as technical and business integration issues on mechatronics engineering.

Conference Type:
full paper
Economie et Services
Institut Interdisciplinaire du Développement de l’Entreprise
Portland, USA, 2-6 August 2015
Portland, USA
2-6 August 2015
27 p.
Published in:
Proceedings of conference PICMET 2015 : "Management of the technology age"
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 Record created 2015-11-05, last modified 2020-10-27

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