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An ontological approach to engineering requirement representation and analysis

  • Alolika Mukhopadhyay (a1) and Farhad Ameri (a1)

Requirement planning is one of the most critical tasks in the product development process. Despite its significant impact on the outcomes of the design process, engineering requirement planning is often conducted in an ad hoc manner without much structure. In particular, the requirement planning phase suffers from a lack of quantifiable measures for evaluating the quality of the generated requirements and also a lack of structure and formality in representing engineering requirements. The main objective of this research is to develop a formal Web Ontology Language ontology for standard representation of engineering requirements. The proposed ontology uses explicit semantics that makes the ontology amenable to automated reasoning. To demonstrate how the proposed ontology can support requirement analysis and evaluation in engineering design, three possible services enabled by the ontology are introduced in this paper. These services are information content measurement, specificity and completeness analysis, and requirement classification. The proposed ontology and its associated algorithms and tools are validated experimentally in this work.

Corresponding author
Reprint requests to: Farhad Ameri, Engineering Informatics Research Group, Texas State University, San Marcos, TX 78666, USA. E-mail:
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