This paper describes a knowledge based engineering system (KBES) to extend the current capabilities of automotive body-in-white (BIW) engineers. It allows them to respond dynamically to changes within a rapid timeframe and to assess the effects of change with respect to the constraints imposed upon them by other product cycle factors. The system operates by creating a unified model description that queries rules as to the suitability of the concept design and is built using a standard KBES to reduce project costs and system implementation. Knowledge from expert engineers and technical literature are captured and represented within the KBE application framework. (C) 2001 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved
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