Taguchi Method of Quality Control Definition
Taguchi methods refer to quality engineering techniques which comprise the process of statistics control as well as management techniques related to a new quality. The Taguchi methods also referred to as robust design methods, were developed by Dr. Genichi Taguchi of Japanese origin.
The Taguchi method was specifically developed to help improve the manufactured good’s quality. However, it was later extended to biotechnology, engineering, advertising as well as marketing.
A Little More on What is the Taguchi Method of Quality Control
The Taguchi method is mainly used to decrease the variability of a product using a developing method system and it is then designed into either a product or a process. Note that most of the Taguchi method focuses on the procedure of the statistical aspects. Therefore, it ensures that there is a robust improvement in quality and processes. There are two basic ideas that you can use to describe this methodology:
- The first idea is that when measuring the quality, a specified target value deviation should be used.
- The second idea asserts that to ensure quality, the built-in should be through the product’s appropriate design, and not through rework and inspection.
The Origin of the Taguchi Method of Quality Control
The Taguchi method can be traced back in the 1950s where a Japanese statistician and an engineer Genichi Taguchi, embarked on coming up with a formula. He came up with the formula while working for an Electrical Communication Laboratory which had engaged him to develop for them a telephone-switching system. It is during this engagement that he was also able to formulate the Taguchi method, a method that was later named after him.
Note that the method became a success and became famous among several companies both in Japan and in the United States. Some of the companies with big names that embraced the Taguchi method include the following:
Taguchi Method of Quality Control Phases
There are three phases that were proposed by Taguchi that are used to achieve the quality design of the economical product. The phases include system design, parameter design, and tolerance design.
- System design-In this phase, engineer designers apply their practical skills together with scientific as well as the principles of engineering to come up with a viable design that is functioning. In the design system, current sophisticated technology including materials, processes as well as various methods of engineering are used in defining and constructing a new system. The system, in this case, maybe an improved modification, new product or process of the current product or process.
- Parameter design-In this phase, the product or the process’s parameters optimal settings is determined. These parameters identified during the system design phase. It is through the parameters design that robust process or product are designed that then minimizes the cost of manufacturing as well as product’s lifetime costs and that of minimizing performance variation.
Generally, there are limited Taguchi experimental designs which have made it easy for them to choose and use in the environment in which they manufacture their products.
The Taguchi Philosophical Approach
The reasons why the Taguchi philosophy was well received by some of the bigger companies and continue to be appreciated is because of its quality control approach. This method emphasizes on higher quality as it is through quality that companies can be able to reduce costs.
Though some still argue that high quality is associated with higher costs, this philosophy gives a contrary opinion where it uses the approach of quality improvement to lower costs.Taguchi philosophical idea has been embraced by most engineering companies.
The method is being used by companies to ensure that it applies quality when improving and designing their products. The method is applied in all manufacturing stages which includes designing, manufacturing up to the sales stage. To ensure quality, extensive and innovative statistical design experiments are applied.
How it Works
The Taguchi method measures quality as a computation of the society’s product associated loss. To define loss in a product, you will have to look at its function’s variations and deviations. This also includes its product’s detrimental side effects. Basically, loss resulting from variation in function represents a comparison in each unit’s product operation difference.
Note that when the variance becomes high, it results in more substantial loss both in its functionality as well as quality. This is displayed in the form of a monetary figure which denotes how product’s defects have impacted usage.
Assume that there is a product called precision drill that is consistently expected to drill holes that are exact in size in various materials being used. In this case, some variance will be witnessed because part of the quality will be determined by the difference in the product’s standards. When you apply the Taguchi method of quality control, you will be expected to focus its use more in research and design. This will help ensure that the units of the product being drilled match both the specifications in the designs as well as the performance’s specifications.
Generally, when a society experiences a loss as a result of a product’s side effect, it raises questions among the people about its quality. For instance, if the drill above happens to cause injury to the person operating it because of how it is designed, then it means that the product does have some loss in its quality. If this is the case, manufacturers will use the Taguchi method of quality control to ensure that the drill is designed in a way that it minimizes injuries to the users.
Benefits of Using Taguchi Method of Quality Control
Some of the benefits of the Taguchi method of quality control include the following:
- It works towards reducing society’s cost product use. This includes designing a product that is not wasteful but that which is operationally efficient. A good example is where a manufacturer designs a product which requires minimal maintenance.
- Given that the presentation of the Taguchi method is done in the form of monetary, it enables the company’s departments to operate on common ground.
- Manufacturers can use the loss function to define the performance measures of the products and the service’s quality features.
In general, the ability of the product to perform the tasks that it;s designed to do under various conditions is an essential component as far as the Taguchi method is concerned. Therefore, it is important to ensure robust designing of a product because most of the operating environmental conditions are not within the product’s control. Robust designs are used to find the settings of the product parameter which makes the products resilient to any changes as well as variations in the environment in which it is placed.