Trouble shooting, Research
and Development, and
ETP 2006 – Jeff Pegg This material is based upon work supported the National Science foundation
under Grant No. 0402616. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed
in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the
National Science Foundation (NFS).
6 Types of Problem Solving.
Research and Development
In this unit we will be talking about the last three.
What is Trouble Shooting?
• A process utilizing several points during
the engineering design process.
• An act of pinpointing and correcting
problems in any kind of system (Kuphaldt,
• A reactive type of problem solving
10 Step Universal Troubleshooting
Process (Litt, 1996)
Get a complete and accurate symptom description.
Make damage control.
Reproduce the symptom.
Do the appropriate general maintenance.
Narrow it down to the root cause.
Repair or Replace the defective component.
Take Pride in your solution.
Prevent future occurrence of this problem.
Here is an example in troubleshooting.
Video link: (4min, 49 sec)
Citigroup Skyscraper Design
If something doesn’t work..
Read the manual.
Contact someone who may know.
Step back- Review what you know.
Think and analyze the problem.
Ask yourself questions.
Try to bring the product to a new state and try to make
the problem recur.
Develop a strategy and change one item at a time.
Record your results.
Think about you thinking process
Sleep on it.
Are we a throw away society?
• What does throw away society mean?
• What are the good and bad about a throw
Research and Development.
There are Three areas that we will study
for Research and Development.
1. Basic Research.
2. Applied Research.
3. Experimental Development.
• Known as science.
• Is experimental or theoretical work
undertaken primarily to acquire new
knowledge of the underlying foundation of
phenomena and observable facts without
any particular application or use in view.
• The results are not generally sold but are
usually published in scientific journals or
• Also known as original investigation
undertaking in order to acquire new
• It is directed towards a specific practical
aim or objective.
• The knowledge or information derived
form is often patented but it amy also be a
• A systematic work, drawing on existing
knowledge gained from research and
practical experience that is directed to
producing new materials, products or
• To install new processes, systems and
• To improve substantially those already
produced or installed.
Form a hypothesis.
Make a prediction.
Perform an experiment.
Analyze the results of the experiment.
Draw a conclusion.
Report your results.
• Every human activity requires preparation. In
troubleshooting, one must prepare his/hers tools, work
area, documentation and most of all his/hers attitude.
• You must have the right attitude to succeed. You CAN
• Don’t try to fix, it just try to narrow it down.
• Don’t panic or get mad
• Be patient or skip steps.
Step 2: Get a Symptom Description
• Description must be complete and
• The more detailed the description the less
work you will need to do.
• Good description minimizes the risk of
“fixing the wrong problem.”
Step 3: Make a Damage Control
1. Safety precautions to prevent injury to people.
2. Machine precautions prevents damage to the
machine or system.
3. Data Precautions prevent loss of valuable
4. Product precautions prevent loss of production
in the production line.
Step 4: Reproduce the Symptom.
• You Can’t fix what you can’t see!
• If you can’t reproduce the symptom, you
may assume the wrong problems.
Step 5: Do the Appropriate
• Corrective maintenance can be
generalized as preventive maintenance.
• If you car doesn’t start what should you
• The battery.
Step 6: Narrow it down.
• Try to find the single problem from a larger
• Complete system tests that will eliminate
the working portions of the system.
Step 7: Repair or Replace
• Disassemble the product carefully.
• Use the proper tool for the job.
• Remember the proper way to reassemble
Step 8: Test
Did the symptom go away?
Did the right symptom go away?
Did I fix the right cause?
Did I create any other problems?
Step 9: Take Pride in Your Solution.
• This step keep you in shape.
• Troubleshooting is an intense mental
• After each solutions take pride in your
Step 10: Prevent Future
Occurrence of this Problem.
• Inform people how this problem happened.
• Share you findings with a co-worker, they
may have to fix same problem. So they
don’t have to reinvent the wheel.
Standard 2: Students will develop an understanding of the core concepts
M. Technological systems include input, processes, output, and, at times, feedback.
P. Technological systems can be connected to one another.
Q. Malfunctions of any part of a system may affect the function and quality of the system.
S. Trade-off is a decision process recognizing the need for careful compromises among
U. Maintenance is the process of inspecting and servicing a product or system on a regular
basis in order for it to continue functioning properly, to extend its life, or to upgrade its capability.
Standard 10: Students will develop an understanding of the role of
troubleshooting, research and development, invention and innovation,
and experimentation in problem solving.
F. Troubleshooting is a problem-solving method used to identify the cause of a malfunction in a
H. Some technological problems are best solved through experimentation.
Standard 19: Students will develop an understanding of and be able to select
and use manufacturing technologies.
H. The manufacturing process includes the designing, development, making, and servicing the products