Assignment 2 Engineering practice case study
This assignment addresses, in part, some of the following objectives for the course as outlined in the course specification:
Marks out of
Case study 2 Engineering practice
14 May 2018
review and analyse the role of engineers as managers
evaluate the characteristics of effective management control, including elements of operations and financial control
distinguish and discuss the social and legal responsibilities relating to product liability and professional negligence
determine appropriate methods of protecting intellectual property for specific situations apply the concept of ethics, and select and justify suitable ethical guidelines for specific
situations, using as a basis the Engineers Australia,Code of Ethics.
This assignment is to be electronically submitted via Study desk assignment drop-box.
Please submit as a generated PDF file or Word file. Do not submit zip files or scanned PDF
File name for your assignment may follow the following format: – Student surname (in capitals) first name_ENG3003_ASS 2_S1_2018
For example, JONES_Bob_ENG3003_ASS 2_S1_2018 This is not critical but helps in sorting student submissions.
CASE STUDY: Torsion Transfer Coupling Manufacture
Jason Border is a qualified mechanical engineer who graduated from the Wilfred Snodgrass University two years ago. Jason works for Trueblood Enterprises, a small mechanical design and manufacturing company. Owner and founder of the company is William Trueblood. William qualified as a tradesman and saw the opportunity to build a business based on designing and manufacturing complex parts for large earthmoving equipment. The business was founded 35 years ago and today employs 55 people. Trueblood Enterprises currently has three professional engineers, Michael Petronis (25 years of experience), Claude Weatherly (15 years of experience), and
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Jason. Claude is in charge of the manufacturing area while Michael and Jason comprise the design and analysis division.
Two months ago Trueblood Enterprises were contracted by Cranbrook Excavators to design and manufacture a torsion transfer coupling for a range of large excavators and draglines that the company manufactures. Cranbrook Excavators is a large company with total worldwide sales of about $2 billion (Australian). Trueblood Enterprises was elated to gain the contract as they had been trying for several years to secure a contract with Cranbrook Excavators. It is hoped that this initial contract will lead to further large contracts between the two companies.
Design of the torsion transfer coupling was undertaken by Michael and Jason. The designed part was extremely difficult to analyse and eventually they adopted a design which they considered was adequate and safe, but with which they were not entirely happy. They would have liked to have had more time to carry out further analysis work, but the production area needed to get the parts into production in order to meet the timelines associated with the contract. The first batch of parts (150) has now been manufactured and delivered and Cranbrook Enterprises has expressed their pleasure at the way in which the contract has been fulfilled to date. The contract calls for the manufacture of a further 500 parts over the next 8 months.
The contract price for the parts is $220 each, and Trueblood Enterprises currently estimates that the total cost of design and manufacture will be $185 each.
Although busy with other work since the finalisation of the design for the torsion transfer coupling, Jason has continued to ponder how the analysis of the part could be improved. Last night he had a sudden flash of inspiration and twohours’calculation this morning has provided a much improved understanding of the stress distribution which is likely to occur in the coupling. On reviewing the new analysis Jason becomes concerned that the existing design may create the possibility of fatigue failure in the longer term. Further analysis leads him to the conclusion that the premature failure of the existing units is a distinct possibility, although failure is unlikely to occur until 15,000 hours. The original contract specification asked for a minimum fatigue life of 20,000 hours. Jason also does a quick estimate of the likely cost of using an improved design in manufacturing and estimates that the cost per part will rise to $205.
Jason discusses his findings with Michael. Initially Michael is reluctant to take any action whatsoever, as he considers it would reflect poorly on the design and analysis division, and particularly on his leadership of that area. When Jason presses the issue and threatens to go directly to William Trueblood, Michael agrees to set up a meeting between William, Jason and himself.
At the meeting Jason presents his findings and recommends that the new design be adopted for production, and that the parts already manufactured and supplied be recalled from Cranbrook Excavators. Predictably, William Trueblood gets very upset and irate. He asks if the parts that have already been supplied are in danger of imminent failure and Michael says no. William Trueblood states that his decision is that the current parts will not be recalled and the production process will continue to manufacture the existing design and not the new design. He says that the existing part
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is “safe enough” and the company cannot afford to increase the cost of production. He also says that he is extremely disappointed with the performance of Michael and Jason, and that the design and analysis division needs to “get its act together or the company will have to consider closing this division and outsourcing its design work”. He also says that if Michael or Jason so much as blink an eyelid out of place in the future they will be sacked from the company!
Identify and discuss the management, contractual and ethical issues involved in this case. What courses of action would be appropriate for Jason to follow (starting immediately)?
(i) Marks will be allocated in the following way:
Identification and Discussion of Issues: Identification of courses of action: Written Communication:
Maximum 100 marks Maximum 100 marks Maximum 100 marks Maximum 300 marks
(ii) The case should be examined and reported using the guidelines set out in ‘The Case Study’ section of the Introductory Book.
(iii) The information contained in the Case Study is considered sufficient to adequately answer the question. If, however, you consider that certain assumptions are required, you may make these assumptions. Any assumptions made will need to be clearly stated. The possible penalty will be that if you make assumptions your mark will be downgraded, and it is likely that the more assumptions you make the greater will be the extent of the downgrading.
(iv) The answer should be no more than 2000 words. This is merely a guide and there is no penalty associated with this word count. The final section of the main body of the report should clearly identify the courses of action that Jason should follow. This section will be a major section of the report on which technical content will be judged. The conclusions reached and action recommended, however, will need to be supported by the arguments presented in the previous sections of the report. This final section should be between 200 and 250 words in length.
(v) Your report should have a formal format with title page, executive summary, contents page and references. The report should be word processed.
(vi) The exact number of words in the report, and in the final section, should be reported on the Title Page.
(vii) Written communication will be assessed in this assignment and will contribute to your overall Communications mark in the course ENG3003 Engineering Management.
(viii) Please note that if plagiarism or cheating is detected in this assignment it will result in no marks for the assignment. Students should ensure they clearly understand the meaning of plagiarism and cheating. In particular, students
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should understand that while they may collaborate with other students on the conceptual ideas in their assignments, the final written report submitted by each student must be unique, and must not contain the written material of (a) any other student in the course, or (b) any other person without due acknowledgement.
(ix) All sources of information used in the preparation of the report should be adequately referenced, and you will be expected to have consulted works outside the formal study materials. In particular, you will need to have consulted the Code of Ethics of the Institution of Engineers, Australia to discern and discuss the ethical issues.
(x) If you wish to refer to legislation, you may only use such material fromeither Australia,orthe country in which you reside while undertaking this course, and you must adequately reference such material.