Industrial Engineering

Benefits of 3D Anthropometry in Product Design and Ergonomics

Benefits of 3D Anthropometry in Product Design and Ergonomics
By Muhammad Zharif

Nowadays, Technological developments have developed very quickly to meet human needs, including in the design and manufacture of products needed for human itself. Due to the increasing availability of 3D scan data in today’s era, we enter the complex field of 3D anthropometry and statistical shape models, which is an increasingly popular mathematical representation for 3D human shape variation. These facilities and knowledge are particularly useful when it comes to products that should fit close to the human body. Many company nowadays have used 3D anthropometry to bring convenience and advantages in their product.

What is 3D Anthropometry

Anthropometry refers to the measurement of the human individual. An early tool of physical anthropology, it has been used for identification, for the purposes of understanding human physical variation, in paleoanthropology and in various attempts to correlate physical with racial and psychological traits. Anthropometry involves the systematic measurement of the physical properties of the human body, primarily dimensional descriptors of body size and shape.

Today, anthropometry plays an important role in industrial design, clothing design, ergonomics and architecture where statistical data about the distribution of body dimensions in the population are used to optimize products. Changes in lifestyles, nutrition, and ethnic composition of populations lead to changes in the distribution of body dimensions (e.g. the rise in obesity) and require regular updating of anthropometric data collections.

3D anthropometry is anthropometry that performed with three-dimensional scanners. 3D scanning that used for 3D anthropometry is the process of analyzing a real-world object or environment in this case is human itself to collect data on its shape and possibly its appearance. The collected data can then be used to construct digital 3D models. 3D anthropometry is basically an improvement of 2d anthropometry. Rather than using traditional 2D anthropometry tools like calipers and stadiometer, 3D anthropometry uses 3D scanner to scan the human body. This method could improve flow of information eliminates structural inefficiencies, human errors, and other factors that weigh down the design cycle.

What is Ergonomics

Ergonomics is the process of designing or arranging workplaces, products and systems so that they fit the people who use them. Most people have heard of ergonomics and think it is something to do with seating or with the design of car controls and instruments – and it is… but it is so much more. Ergonomics applies to the design of anything that involves people – workspaces, sports and leisure, health and safety.

Ergonomics (or ‘human factors’ as it is referred to in North America) is a branch of science that aims to learn about human abilities and limitations, and then apply this learning to improve people’s interaction with products, systems and environments.

Ergonomics aims to improve workspaces and environments to minimise risk of injury or harm. So as technologies change, so too does the need to ensure that the tools we access for work, rest and play are designed for our body’s requirements.

Anthropometry’s Relation to Ergonomics in product design

Ergonomics can incorporate the use of anthropometric data when designing products to improve the user experience. If a designer doesn’t use anthropometric data during the design process, it can lead to a poor user experience that causes discomfort, pain and potential injury. Ergonomics is a consideration that leads to a product being designed in a way to make it easy to use. Size, weight, shape, position of buttons and controls are all aspects that contribute to it being ergonomically designed.

Benefits of 3D Anthropometry in designing products and Ergonomics in Product Design

In the case for designing products and meets the ergonomics in product design, 3D anthropometry have some benefit that made this method better than classic or 2D anthropometry in designing products.

  1. Streamlined Product Design Cycles

Time really does mean money when it comes to product design and manufacturing. That’s one of the most significant reasons that so many companies are turning their attention to 3D modeling. When compared to 2D modeling, 3D modeling is significantly faster. This happen because 3D modelling for 3D anthropometry used 3D scanner that can scan entire human body in instant time and give the exact information of the measurement from the scanners. Timesaver simply can’t be ignored, particularly when it can allow you to put your product into production ahead of your competition.

  1. An Accessible Design Process

Changes made in the name of speed don’t have to mean a corresponding drop in quality or a complication of the design and manufacturing processes. Automating design process with the help of 3D modeling software can actually increase productivity while also providing increased access to customers and internal personnel that might otherwise not have clear visibility into our work. You’ll be able to quickly create both 2D and 3D renderings of your models, providing the visualization we need when and where your team needs it.

  1. Improved Communication Across Internal and External Teams

Ultimately, that increased accessibility leads to better communication throughout company. Going from a 2D image to a 3D model also allows for quicker and more productive internal design reviews. 3D modeling can also foster more effective communication with suppliers, customers, and internal teams, further cutting down on time-to-market.

Both clients and internal personnel will be able to visualize both components and the final product design more easily with the help of a functioning 3D model. The addition of animation creates an interactive model that provides an excellent idea of how the product will function in real life. 2D modeling can’t provide the same level of easy visualization and quick comprehension.

As an added bonus, 3D solid modeling can be used to create animations and renderings for promotional content. The same goes for if you’re working off of an existing prototype—3D scanning can be used to fabricate quick 3D CAD models for marketing and sales purposes.

  1. Catch Design and Quality Issues Before They Cost You

Far too many resources are wasted on catching faulty designs and quality issues after production has already started. Why not start asking and answering complex engineering questions earlier in the process? 3D modeling allows your company to conserve those valuable resources by enabling you to catch errors before a design is finalized. As an example, 3D modeling allows you to catch interference issues in an assembly at a point when changes to the design are less costly.

Virtual 3D prototypes also reduce the need for, and cost of, creating physical prototypes. Validating your designs digitally will reduce costs stemming from both design and quality problems while maintaining the integrity of your design process.

  1. More Effective Data Management

Efficient data management is always a concern for manufacturers and designers, particularly when working with numerous revisions and evolutions of products. It’s quite possible that some designers and engineers who prefer 2D modeling are simply more comfortable manually organizing their drafts. But making the switch from 2D to 3D modeling can drastically increase efficiency.

3D modeling allows you to easily keep track of your design data. Instead of having to compare the 3D product design to the 2D anthropometry data, it is easier to just input the 3D design to the 3D anthropometry data that has been converted into a virtual human model. This helps to consolidate drafting practices and keep your entire team on the same page. And, as we’ve mentioned, 3D solid modeling simplifies data exchange with other departments, keeping the product design cycle straightforward and avoiding any potential redundancies or repeated work.

References

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0143816697000067

https://www.nature.com/articles/srep26672

https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize/guides/z42j2nb/revision/3

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6411053/

https://www.laserdesign.com/benefits-of-3d-modeling-and-why-2d-islimited/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthropometry

https://www.ergonomics.com.au/what-is-ergonomics/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3D_scanning