Electronic Product Data Management (ePDM) to Improve Design Producibility, Reliability, Availability, Maintainability, and Sustainability

Principal Investigator:  Dr. Mitchell Kerman, Stevens Institute of Technology (mkerman@stevens.edu)

Collaborator(s):  Stevens Institute of Technology

Timeframe:  September 30, 2015 to September 29, 2016

Category: Systems Engineering and Systems Management Transformation (SEMT)


Objective: The intent of this research is to identify and define evidence-based electronics-centric best practices and tools utilized by corporations and government agencies (such as NASA, DARPA, ARL) implementing and using these state-of-the-art and evolving electronic-Product Data Management (ePDM) systems. The research will identify best practices for development, collaboration, and production as well as benefits of design for producibility, reliability, availability, maintainability, sustainability, and the associated costs for execution.

Approach: The primary focus areas will be on data management responsibilities of the U.S. RDECOM Communications-Electronics Research, Development, and Engineering Center (CERDEC):

  • Product Data – “All data created as a consequence of defining (requirements), designing, testing, producing, storing, distributing, operating, maintaining, modifying and disposing of a product.”
  • Product Definition Information – “Information that defines the product’s requirements, documents the product’s attributes and is the authoritative source for configuration definition and control.”
  • Product Operational Information – “Information used to operate, maintain and dispose the product.”
  • Associated Information – “Information generated as part of the product development and life-cycle management process, but isn’t clearly definable as either of the other two categories.”

Focusing on these areas, this research will aim to identify state-of-the-art electronic product development management (ePDM) utilized by corporations and government agencies.  The key evaluation benefits for understanding design benefits are identified as: producibility, reliability, availability, maintainability, sustainability and execution cost.  Ancillary evaluation will include issues surrounding cybersecurity.

ApplicationIt is also believed that the challenges encountered by CERDEC can serve as a case study for other government and corporate agencies managing complex systems programs.   The insights, best practice identification, and recommendations are believed to be broadly applicable to other data management organizations.


Major Deliverables:


Publications: None to date

Research Team

  • Mitchell Kerman, Stevens Institute of Technology
  • Jeff McDonald, Stevens Institute of Technology

Collaborating Institutions

Project Researchers