A Welding Capability Assessment Method (WCAM) to support multidisciplinary design of aircraft structures
Journal article, 2018

Designing aircraft engines is a complex process in which requirements from multiple disciplines need to be considered. Decisions about product geometry and tolerances to achieve optimized aerodynamics, product life and weight can affect the manufacturing process. Therefore, providing information to designers about process capabilities is necessary to support design exploration and analysis. In this paper, the authors propose theWelding Capability Assessment Method (WCAM) as a tool to support the systematic identification and assessment of design issues related to product geometry critical to the welding process. Within this method, a list of potential failure modes during welding is connected to specific design parameters. Once the critical design parameters have been identified, quantitative methods are proposed to calculate tolerances to reduce the likelihood of welding failures. The application of this method is demonstrated through an industrial case study where a combination of interviews and welding simulations is used to study the welding capability of a number of product geometries. This method represents an advancement from traditional qualitative guidelines and expert judgments about welding difficulties towards a more quantitative approach, supporting virtual design.


Variation management

Design for quality

Design for welding


Process capability



Julia Madrid

Chalmers, Industrial and Materials Science, Product Development

Anders Forslund

Chalmers, Industrial and Materials Science

Rikard Söderberg

Chalmers, Industrial and Materials Science, Product Development

Kristina Wärmefjord

Chalmers, Industrial and Materials Science, Product Development

Steven Hoffenson

Stevens Institute of Technology

Johan Vallhagen

GKN Aerospace Sweden

Peter Andersson

GKN Aerospace Sweden

International Journal on Interactive Design and Manufacturing

1955-2513 (ISSN) 19552505 (eISSN)

Vol. 12 3 833-851

Subject Categories

Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics

Aerospace Engineering

Manufacturing, Surface and Joining Technology

Areas of Advance




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