From Requirements to Product: an MBSE Approach for the Digitalization of the Aircraft Design Process

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

20 Downloads (Pure)


During the aircraft conceptual design phase, many different design options need to be explored and compared in a short time frame. To speed up this process, efforts have been made in the past decades to digitalize parts of the design process, with a focus on the automation of the repetitive and non-creative tasks inherent to the iterative design process. Whilst many of the newly developed methodologies focus on specific parts of the design process, a holistic model-based design framework, incorporating the latest design technology developments, is lacking. To fill this gap, this paper presents the latest version of the Design and Engineering Engine (DEE) framework, originally proposed in the early 2000s and progressively matured through the experience of several international research collaborations. The DEE enables the setup and execution of Multidisciplinary Design Analysis and Optimization (MDAO) problems for aircraft (sub)systems, leveraging the automated, rule-based modeling capabilities offered by Knowledge-Based Engineering (KBE) and recent developments in the automatic formulation and integration of MDAO workflows. While the traditional MDAO process focuses on a given product architecture, the DEE allows also architectural design studies and makes use of Model-Based Systems Engineering (MBSE) principles to address the whole design process, from requirements modeling up to the automatic verification of the requirements. In practice, the DEE provides a single conceptual framework or template from which specific design framework instances can be formulated and executed, according to the user's needs. This paper describes the DEE architecture and its implementation concepts. Furthermore, it demonstrates the application of the DEE template to four different scenarios, ranging from a simple requirement verification study, up to the simultaneous synthesis and optimization of an aircraft system and its production process, including multiple system architecture options.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1688-1706
Number of pages19
JournalINCOSE International Symposium
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Green Open Access added to TU Delft Institutional Repository ‘You share, we take care!’ – Taverne project
Otherwise as indicated in the copyright section: the publisher is the copyright holder of this work and the author uses the Dutch legislation to make this work public.


The research presented in this paper has been performed in the framework of the AGILE4.0 (Towards Cyber-physical Collaborative Aircraft Development) and DEFAINE (Design Exploration Frame-work based on AI for froNt-loaded Engineering) projects and has received funding from the European Union programs Horizon 2020 (grant agreement n° 815122) and ITEA 3 Call 6 project 19009.


  • Model Based Systems Engineering
  • Multidisciplinary Design Optimization
  • Aircraft Design Process


Dive into the research topics of 'From Requirements to Product: an MBSE Approach for the Digitalization of the Aircraft Design Process'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this