Posts tagged ‘Six Sigma DFSS’

Making Others Dreams Happen – Taking That Gleam In A Visionary’s Eye To Reality

Making dreams happen is a two-fold process

  • The visionaries who dream great ideas and takes the concept to a prototype
  • The pragmatists who take it to market
It always surprises me to see my peers proclaim that a project or an idea is not viable mainly because they don’t understand it
What does it take for a project to succeed?
  • The right resources
  • Reasonable capital
  • A Team who believes that it can be done
  • The right seeds planted and watered
  • Empowerment
  • Engineering
  • Risk Management
  • A willingness to shoot from the hip when required
  • Lending a friendly ear to the soldiers
  • Not shrinking from going back to the drawing board
Creativity is the key
Great solutions come when your back is against the wall
Research and present your strategy for meeting Goals
Get buy in from the Team
Go for it and do not look back

Revisiting Pareto Charts – Process Improvement & Low Hanging Fruit – Instant Gratification

ASQ is a great place to browse and learn. The link above is a concise write up of the power of a Pareto Chart and how the same can be generated in Excel. You could do it with Minitab as well.

My first brush with a Pareto chart was in 2001

My assignment for the week was to increase the yield of a packaging line with a major manufacturer of diabetes bio-sensors.

I walked the line, talked to the operators and talked to one of the engineers

Here is the low down

  • The operators maintained a very clear record of the down time and frequency
  • The data was collected and stored in a database
Went and met the keeper of the database
He was thrilled and mentioned that he was waiting for the day when some one would come in and ask him for the data.
Got the data plugged it into Excel and created a Pareto Chart.
Passed it around the weekly meeting with a smug look
Here are the top hitters
  • Meetings
  • Repairs to literature folder
  • Have communication on the line and reduce wasteful meetings
  • Bring in the literature folder company rep and recondition the system
ROI or is it Return On No Investment?
  • Increase in yield from 75% to 95%
Is that instant gratification or what?
Well since then I have used the Pareto Chart any number of times with success and little effort
Who needs training courses?
Is that LEAN manufacturing or what?

The Last Straw That Broke The Camel’s Back – A Lesson In Root Cause Analysis

Root Cause Analysis is looking at the causal effects for a failure and install controls to prevent repetition of the problem. Usually there will be multiple causes which combine to create the failure.

Let us contemplate what was the cause for the camel’s back to break

  • True it is overloading beyond the capability of the camel. But how do you specify the load a camel will carry. It is dependent on the camel’s health, temperature of the day, the terrain, speed of travel and the skill of the camel jockey.
  • The health of a camel depends on the nutrition and care bestowed by the jockey and his skill in choosing the right time to travel as well as scout out the most comfortable terrain to navigate.
  • Designed experiments help set up the parameters which will help the camel carry a set load under given conditions.

Here is an excellent link on the subject




Android Mobile Phones, QR Codes and Manufacturing Engineering

QR codes provide a great opportunity for manufacturing engineers.

Take a highly automated piece of equipment and embed QR codes on the HMI for spare parts, SOP’s, maintenance procedures and trouble shooting aids.

QR code generators are available free from the World Wide Web and can be generated in the form of *png,pdf & jpeg images.

Your Android phone can download free QR code readers (Apps) from the Android MarketPlace.

Generate codes for URL’s holding the required information and embed them in the alarm screens of the HMI

When an alarm condition occurs scan the 2D barcode with the QR scanner app and take the user directly to the URL giving the required information for corrective action.

Have Android will Six Sigma 🙂

Machine Vision Inspection – A boon for Kaizen, Six Sigma & DFSS

The design of new custom automated equipment and the process improvement associated with it is the forte of manufacturing, process, automation and industrial engineers.

DFSS (Design for Six Sigma), Six Sigma & Kaizen rely on a measurement phase prior to analyzing the data.

Traditional measurement has been done by CMM’s (Coordinate Measuring Machines)

However this task is time consuming, laborious and not Real Time. This is where Machine Vision Inspection System can provide an immediate return on investment.

Machine Vision Systems are

  • Real Time
  • Work with NIST traceable standards
  • Can do 100%  inspection
  • Are in par with CMM’s on accuracy
  • Are not laborious or time consuming
  • Can stop the system from producing defective parts
  • Process can be centered
  • Processes can be trended
  • Can work in tandem with SPC packages
  • Can be analyzed real time or studied offline
  • Can also have analysis tools built in
  • Involve the user in improving the system
  • Inexpensive
  • Compact
  • Scaleable

Predictive Maintenance Using Machine Vision Inspection & Real Time SPC – Introduction

Machine Vision Inspection & Real Time SPC are now part and parcel of most modern custom manufacturing automation equipment.

This is an inbuilt tool which will also help us conduct predictive maintenance.

  • Real time run charts act as a process signature for a given set of parameters and machine condition
  • Base line these signatures in chart form in your knowledge base
  • Develop history
  • Compare these signatures with your daily run charts
  • Variations in the charts will point out to equipment wear or change in incoming material specifications.

Typical types of equipment deterioration could include

  • Tracking of belts
  • Belt wear
  • Tool wear and time for re-sharpening
  • Maintenance for printers, lasers
  • Bearing failure
  • Broken components in the system
  • Sensors at point of failure
  • Servo motors at point of failure
  • Tools failing in vision system

Extended Design Thinking

Building a case for Extended Design Thinking. Clubbing Design Thinking, Six Sigma & Design for Six Sigma.
Start anywhere. Keep the model open, extensible and flexible.
Use best practices and tools.