Imperial College London

ProfessorPeterChilds

Faculty of EngineeringDyson School of Design Engineering

Head of the School of Design Engineering
 
 
 
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Contact

 

+44 (0)20 7594 7049p.childs Website CV

 
 
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Location

 

Studio 1, Dyson BuildingDyson BuildingSouth Kensington Campus

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Summary

 

Publications

Publication Type
Year
to

194 results found

Garvey B, Chen L, Shi F, Han J, Childs PRNet al., 2018, New directions in computational, combinational and structural creativity, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part C: Journal of Mechanical Engineering Science, ISSN: 0954-4062

© 2018, IMechE 2018. This paper examines how new and creative relationships in datasets, not easily revealed by conventional information retrieval methods and technologies, can be identified using a mix of established and new methods. The authors present how the integration of computerised morphological analysis with new computational models, incorporating web crawler, data processing networking and data mining algorithms, can help facilitate the identification of new ideas. Boden’s concept of ‘Combinational Creativity’ indicates a structured process, which generates unfamiliar combinations of familiar concepts and constructs allowing creative styles of thought. This structured approach has been constrained by the resultant combinatorial explosion and the dearth of easily accessible computer software and supporting methodologies, to help identify viable new solutions. Feature-enhanced computerised morphological analysis provides a new structural support tool for creativity and innovation. Morphological analysis systematically structures and examines all the possible relationships in a multidimensional, highly complex, usually non-quantifiable problem space. Computerisation of the process now permits large number of configurations (millions) in the problem space to be majorly reduced (typically > 95%), identifying only internally consistent solutions. These solutions are likely to embrace configurations containing something, which has not previously been considered, thus increasing the probability of some form of technological or design breakthrough and hence truly creative.

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Han J, Shi F, Chen L, Childs PRNet al., 2018, The Combinator - a computer-based tool for creative idea generation based on a simulation approach, DESIGN SCIENCE, Vol: 4, ISSN: 2053-4701

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Michalakoudis I, Aurisicchio M, Childs P, Koutlidis A, Harding Jet al., 2018, Empowering manufacturing personnel through functional understanding, Production Planning & Control, Pages: 1-16, ISSN: 0953-7287

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Sikhwal RK, Childs PRN, 2018, Design for Mass Individualisation: Introducing Networked Innovation Approach, Customization 4.0, Editors: Hankammer, Nielsen, Piller, Schuh, Wang, Publisher: Springer International Publishing, Pages: 19-35, ISBN: 978-3-319-77555-5

BOOK CHAPTER

Spyrakos Papastavridis E, Dai J, Childs PRN, Tsagarakis Net al., 2018, Selective-compliance based lagrange model and multilevel non-collocated feedback control of a humanoid robot, Journal of Mechanisms and Robotics, ISSN: 1942-4302

This paper presents unified control schemes for compliant humanoid robots that are aimed at ensuring successful execution of both balancing tasks and walking trajectories for this class of bipeds, given the complexity of under-actuation. A set of controllers corresponding to the single support (SS) and double support (DS) walking phases has been designed based on the flexible sagittal joint dynamics of the system, accounting for both the motor and link states. The first controller uses partial state feedback (PDD), whereas the second considers the full state of the robot (PPDD), whilst both are mathematically proven to stabilize the closed-loop systems for regulation and trajectory tracking tasks. It is demonstrated mathematically that the PDD controller possesses better stability properties than the PPDD scheme for regulation tasks, even though the latter has the advantage of allowing for its associated gain-set to be generated by means of standard techniques, such as Linear Quadratic Regulator (LQR) control. A switching condition relating the Centre-of-Pressure (CoP) to the energy functions corresponding to the DS and SS models, has also been established. The theoretical results are corroborated by means of balancing and walking experiments using the COmpliant huMANoid (COMAN), whilst a practical comparison between the designed controller and a classical PD controller for compliant robots, has also been performed. Overall, and a key conclusion of this paper, the PPDD scheme has produced superior trajectory tracking performance, with 9%, 15% and 20% lower joint space error for the hip, knee and ankle respectively.

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Spyrakos-Papastavridis E, Kashiri N, Childs PRN, Tsagarakis NGet al., 2018, Online impedance regulation techniques for compliant humanoid balancing, ROBOTICS AND AUTONOMOUS SYSTEMS, Vol: 104, Pages: 85-98, ISSN: 0921-8890

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Zhu L, Li N, Childs PRN, 2018, Light-weighting in aerospace component and system design, Propulsion and Power Research, ISSN: 2212-540X

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Baxter W, Aurisicchio M, Childs P, 2017, Contaminated Interaction Another Barrier to Circular Material Flows, JOURNAL OF INDUSTRIAL ECOLOGY, Vol: 21, Pages: 507-516, ISSN: 1088-1980

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Baxter W, Childs P, 2017, Designing circular possessions, Routledge Handbook of Sustainable Product Design, Pages: 391-404, ISBN: 9781317435938

© 2017 selection and editorial matter, Jonathan Chapman; individual chapters, the contributors. The notion of possession is one of the most fundamental concepts that guide everyday behaviour. Paradoxically, it is often poorly understood. This is particularly true in a circular context where consumer interactions with possessions are being altered and in some cases redefined. Thus, an understanding of possession serves as a useful, if not necessary, prerequisite to designing circular products, services and systems. This chapter explores the idea of possession: what it is, how an object becomes one and why it is important for the circular economy. Possession is understood through a human-centred lens that considers the consumer’s state of mind towards and relationship with an object. A state of possessiveness can be attained for material or immaterial objects and for objects that may or may not legally belong to the person. The discussion is presented within a design framework that discusses the motives and routes that lead to the state of possession. This framework is substantiated by looking at affordance principles and paths associated with possession. Each section includes a theoretical discussion as well as practical examples and insights that can be incorporated into the product design process itself. This chapter aids in understanding interactions relevant to the circular economy such as the maintenance and care that comes with object attachment and adoption of access-based consumption models. Understanding and designing for these desired interactions should be the first priority of designers followed by an establishment of laws, regulations and policies to support them.

BOOK CHAPTER

Chen L, Shi F, Han J, Childs PRNet al., 2017, A NETWORK-BASED COMPUTATIONAL MODEL FOR CREATIVE KNOWLEDGE DISCOVERY BRIDGING HUMAN-COMPUTER INTERACTION AND DATA MINING, ASME International Design Engineering Technical Conferences / Computers and Information in Engineering Conference (IDETC/CIE 2017), Publisher: AMER SOC MECHANICAL ENGINEERS, ISSN: 2159-7383

CONFERENCE PAPER

Chen X, Liu X, Childs P, Brandon N, Wu Bet al., 2017, A Low Cost Desktop Electrochemical Metal 3D Printer, ADVANCED MATERIALS TECHNOLOGIES, Vol: 2, ISSN: 2365-709X

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Han J, Park D, Shi F, Chen L, Childs PRNet al., 2017, Three driven approaches to combinational creativity, Pages: 259-268, ISSN: 2220-4334

Creativity is a crucial element of design, and a human attribute that has aroused significant attention. However, few studies have focused on the factors and motivations that drive creativity. The aim of the study is to investigate the driving forces behind combinational creativity for developing original creative products. We propose three driven approaches to combinational creativity, the problem-driven approach, the common-driven approach, and the inspiration-driven approach, based on previous research projects on design process, design strategy, and design cognition. A test involving two-hundred practical products has been conducted to validate the three approaches by means of expert evaluation. The test results have indicated the validity of the three driven approaches. The three approaches proposed in this study have provided an understanding of how combinational creativity is driven in design, which could lead to a better comprehension of human creativity in design. The study enables indication that the three approaches can be applied by designers to aid in the production of creative designs for and in resource-limited societies.

CONFERENCE PAPER

Han J, Park D, Shi F, Chen L, Hua M, Childs PRNet al., 2017, Three driven approaches to combinational creativity: Problem-, similarity- and inspiration-driven, Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part C: Journal of Mechanical Engineering Science, ISSN: 0954-4062

© 2017, IMechE 2017. Creativity is a crucial element of design. The aim of this study is to investigate the driving forces behind combinational creativity. We propose three driven approaches to combinational creativity, problem-, similarity- and inspiration-driven, based on previous research projects on design process, strategy and cognition. A case study involving hundreds of practical products selected from winners of international design competitions has been conducted to evaluate the three approaches proposed. The results support the three driven approaches and indicate that they can be used independently as well as complementarily. The three approaches proposed in this study have provided an understanding of how combinational creativity functions in design. The approaches could be used as a set of creative idea generation methods for supporting designers in producing creative design ideas.

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Han J, Shi F, Chen L, Childs Pet al., 2017, The Analogy Retriever – an idea generation tool, 21st International Conference on Engineering Design (ICED 17), Publisher: Design Society, Pages: 011-020, ISSN: 2220-4342

Idea generation plays a vital role in design, but coming up with ideas, especially creative ideas, is often challenging. Analogy is considered as a fundamental component of creativity and a beneficial method for idea generation. This paper presents a computer-based tool, named the Analogy Retriever, for assisting designers in idea generation and prospectively in idea elaboration. The tool is based on an algorithm simulating aspects of the human cognitive process of analogy. It is focused on solving proportional analogy problems (A:B::C:X) by retrieving the unknown term X from a knowledge database. The Analogy Retriever has been indicated to be useful and effective for helping the designers concerned generate creative ideas through conducting a case study. The results indicate that the Analogy Retriever, in its current formulation, can significantly improve the quantity, quality, novelty, and variety of the ideas produced. The tool is suggested to be greatly beneficial to design space exploration and expansion.

CONFERENCE PAPER

Hu Z, Rao C, Tao C, Childs PRN, Zhao Yet al., 2017, A case-based decision theory based process model to aid product conceptual design, Cluster Computing, Pages: 1-18, ISSN: 1386-7857

In new product development, the rapid proposal of innovative solutions represents an important phase. This in turn relies on creative ideas, their evaluation, refinement and embodiment of worthwhile directions. This study aims to describe a CBDT based process model for product conceptual design that concentrates on rapidly generating innovations with the support of decision-making rationale. Case-based decision theory (CBDT), derived from case-based reasoning, is applied in this paper as a core method to aid design engineers to make an informed decision quickly, thus accelerating the design process. In the process of utilizing CBDT to support a decision, as for the similarity function, the proper value assignment methods to the selected attribute set for calculation are discussed. In order to assist with innovative solution, aspects of the theory of inventive problem solving (TRIZ) are integrated into the case-based reasoning process. Accordingly, a CBDT-TRIZ model is developed. Quality-function deployment is used to translate customer wants into relevant engineering design requirements and thus formulating the design specification. Image-Scale is used to offer an orthogonal coordinates system to aid evaluation. Finally, a case study is used to demonstrate the validity of the proposed process model based on the design of a cordless hand-tool for garden and lawn applications.

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Li W, Zhang J, Mi P, Zhao J, Tao Z, Childs PRN, Shih TI-Pet al., 2017, The effect of gravity on R410A condensing flow in horizontal circular tubes, NUMERICAL HEAT TRANSFER PART A-APPLICATIONS, Vol: 71, Pages: 327-340, ISSN: 1040-7782

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Michalakoudis I, Childs P, Aurisicchio M, Harding Jet al., 2017, Using functional analysis diagrams to improve product reliability and cost, ADVANCES IN MECHANICAL ENGINEERING, Vol: 9, ISSN: 1687-8140

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Ramos Cabal A, Guarracino I, Mellor A, Alonso Álvarez D, Childs P, Ekins Daukes N, Markides CNet al., 2017, Solar-Thermal and Hybrid Photovoltaic-Thermal Systems for Renewable Heating, Publisher: Grantham Institute, Imperial College London

Headlines Heat constitutes about half of total global energy demand. Solar heat offers key advantages over other renewable sources for meeting this demand through distributed, integrated systems. Solar heat is a mature sustainable energy technology capable of mass deployment. There is significant scope for increasing the installed solar heat capacity in Europe. Only a few European countries are close to reaching the EU target of 1 m2 of solar-thermal installations per person. One key challenge for the further development of the solar-thermal market arises from issues related to the intermittency of the solar resource, and the requirement for storage and/or backup systems. The former increases investment costs and limits adaptability. An analysis of EU countries with good market development, suggests that obligation schemes are the best policy option for maximising installations. These do not present a direct cost to the public budget, and determine the growth of the local industry in the long term. Solar-thermal collectors can be combined with photovoltaic (PV) modules to produce hybrid PV-thermal (PV-T) collectors. These can deliver both heat and electricity simultaneously from the same installed area and at a higher overall efficiency compared to individual solar-thermal and PV panels installed separately. Hybrid PV-T technology provides a particularly promising solution when roof space is limited or when heat and electricity are required at the same time.

REPORT

Shi F, Chen L, Han J, Childs Pet al., 2017, A Data-Driven Text Mining and Semantic Network Analysis for Design Information Retrieval, Journal of Mechanical Design, Transactions of the ASME, Vol: 139, ISSN: 1050-0472

With the advent of the big-data era, massive information stored in electronic and digital forms on the internet become valuable resources for knowledge discovery in engineering design. Traditional document retrieval method based on document indexing focuses on retrieving individual documents related to the query, but is incapable of discovering the various associations between individual knowledge concepts. Ontology-based technologies, which can extract the inherent relationships between concepts by using advanced text mining tools, can be applied to improve design information retrieval in the largescale unstructured textual data environment. However, few of the public available ontology database stands on a design and engineering perspective to establish the relations between knowledge concepts. This paper develops a WordNet focusing on design and engineering associations by integrating the text mining approaches to construct an unsupervised learning ontology network. Subsequent probability and velocity network analysis are applied with different statistical behaviors to evaluate the correlation degree between concepts for design information retrieval. The validation results show that the probability and velocity analysis on our constructed ontology network can help recognize the high related complex design and engineering associations between elements. Finally, an engineering design case study demonstrates the use of our constructed semantic network in real-world project for design relations retrieval.

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Shi F, Chen L, Han J, Childs Pet al., 2017, IMPLICIT KNOWLEDGE DISCOVERY IN DESIGN SEMANTIC NETWORK BY APPLYING PYTHAGOREAN MEANS ON SHORTEST PATH SEARCHING, ASME International Design Engineering Technical Conferences / Computers and Information in Engineering Conference (IDETC/CIE 2017), Publisher: AMER SOC MECHANICAL ENGINEERS, ISSN: 2159-7383

CONFERENCE PAPER

Sikhwal RK, Childs PRN, 2017, Product Design for Mass Individualisation for Industrial Application, IEEE International Conference on Industrial Engineering and Engineering Management (IEEE IEEM), Publisher: IEEE, Pages: 674-680, ISSN: 2157-3611

CONFERENCE PAPER

Baxter W, Yang X, Aurisicchio M, Childs PRNet al., 2016, Exploring a human-centred design of possessions, 12th Biennial NordDesign Conference on Highlighting the Nordic Approach, Publisher: DESIGN SOC, Pages: 53-62

CONFERENCE PAPER

Baxter WL, Aurisicchio M, Childs PRN, 2016, Materials, use and contaminated interaction, MATERIALS & DESIGN, Vol: 90, Pages: 1218-1227, ISSN: 0264-1275

JOURNAL ARTICLE

Chen X, Mi P, Childs PRN, Sokolova E, Li W, Yan Yet al., 2016, EXPERIMENTAL INVESTIGATION OF EVAPORATION HEAT TRANSFER INSIDE HORIZONTAL MICRO-FIN TUBES, ASME Summer Heat Transfer Conference, Publisher: AMER SOC MECHANICAL ENGINEERS

CONFERENCE PAPER

Childs PRN, 2016, Nanoscale Thermometry and Temperature Measurement, RSC Nanoscience and Nanotechnology No. 38, Thermometry at the Nanoscale: Techniques and Selected Applications., Editors: Carlos, Palacio, Publisher: Royal Society of Chemistry, Pages: 3-22, ISBN: 9781849739047

Nanoscale temperature measurement concerns the determination of temperature or temperature difference at the sub-micron scale. Applications where it is important to be able to measure local temperature at the nanoscale include microelectronics, optics, microfluidics, chemical reaction and biochemical processes, such as living cells and nano-medicine.

BOOK CHAPTER

Gronneberg I, Childs P, 2016, Organizational Principles Oriented to Maximize Innovative Ideas of Blue-Collar Employees in Manufacturing, 12th Biennial NordDesign Conference on Highlighting the Nordic Approach, Publisher: DESIGN SOC, Pages: 288-297

CONFERENCE PAPER

Han J, Shi F, Childs PRN, 2016, THE COMBINATOR: A COMPUTER-BASED TOOL FOR IDEA GENERATION, 14th International Design Conference (DESIGN), Publisher: DESIGN SOC, Pages: 639-648, ISSN: 1847-9073

CONFERENCE PAPER

Hua M, Huang S, Childs P, 2016, From linear to systemic: an integrated design solution for sustainable household consumption in Iceland, 12th Biennial NordDesign Conference on Highlighting the Nordic Approach, Publisher: Design Society, Pages: 186-195

Sustainable consumption patterns are one of the key driving forces to achieve sustainabledevelopment. However, studies in design research tend to draw on the existing system ofproduction and consumption with its inherent linear processes, which are often wasteful andpolluting. Here we report on a project for a Nordic family in Iceland which had the dual aimsof introducing a new holistic research method into the consumption research sector andinvestigating ways to optimize the family’s use of resources from a Systemic Design (SD)perspective. Using SD theory, we redesigned the material and energy flows run in the house andoptimized the relationships between its system elements. These programmed changes improvedthe efficiency of the current system and provided opportunities for subsequent designinnovation.

CONFERENCE PAPER

Michalakoudis I, Childs P, Harding J, 2016, Using Functional Analysis Diagrams for Production Cost Optimization, IEEE International Conference on Advanced Materials for Science and Engineering (IEEE-ICAMSE), Publisher: IEEE, Pages: 554-557

CONFERENCE PAPER

Shi F, Han J, Childs PRN, 2016, A DATA MINING APPROACH TO ASSIST DESIGN KNOWLEDGE RETRIEVAL BASED ON KEYWORD ASSOCIATIONS, 14th International Design Conference (DESIGN), Publisher: DESIGN SOC, Pages: 1125-1134, ISSN: 1847-9073

CONFERENCE PAPER

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