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Evaluation principles of innovative products based on TRIZ algorithm

Evaluation principles of innovative products based on TRIZ algorithm

| On 06, Jun 2018

Engineering Practice Center ,University of Tongji,China


As a systematic method of innovation, Triz speeds up the process of people’s invention greatly and can obtain high quality innovative products. But it has’t told us how to judge the innovative products as meaningful. This paper gives a systematic evaluation based on 10 principles. It is meaningful to evaluate the invention of an innovative product by comparing it with an original product or a similar product.


Triz, as an innovative method that is popular all over the world, has been widely used in practical applications and solved many practical problems, but it has not given a test standard or method to determine whether the invention or innovation is meaningful.As shown in figure 1, a table is characterized by the classic Triz theory: for the composition, the table consists of two parts, namely, table and table legs.In terms of Numbers, there is one table and four legs;For the shape, the table and legs are rectangular; for the material, the top of the table is wooden and legs are metal, and so on.According to the classic Triz theory, making a change in one of its features will design a new table, for example, change the shape of the table’s top into a circular one.In the application of Triz theory, we can make the above innovations or inventions easily, but it does not give an evaluation principle to evaluate whether the improvement makes sense.Therefore, we put forward an evaluation principle to evaluate whether the product of innovation or invention is meaningful or not,which is also for the improvment of  Triz theory.

Fig.1 The picture of a table


1. Evaluation principles

10 evaluation principles are given below. We can compare the following characteristics of old with new products improved or invented by Triz theory. It is meaningful to evaluate whether the product improvement or invention is valuable.

1. 1 Volume
Evaluates the volume of two products. Volume is divided into two types: 1. The actual volume V1 of the product which can be measured by drainage method, buried sand method, press method, drape method and so on. 2. The size of the space occupied by the product, V2, is to place the product in a Cartesian coordinate system in a reasonable direction. If the maximum values of the product in the X, Y, and Z directions are a, b, and c, then V2=a* b*c (Note: A reasonable direction here refers to the orientation of the product when it is in use, not necessarily the direction in which it takes up the least space).

Obviously, the size V2 of the space occupied by the product is greater than or equal to the substantial volume V1 of the product. Choose the volume type that needs to be evaluated reasonably according to the different using environments. For example, when evaluating the volume of the 3D printer shown in FIG. 2(a), it is necessary to evaluate the size V2 of the space occupied by the 3D printer, and when assessing the volume of water in the swimming pool shown in FIG. 2(b), it is necessary to evaluate its actual Volume V1.

Fig.2 Two different types of volume

1.2 Functions
Evaluate the functionality of the two products. The function here refers to the use of the product .We can evaluate the use of the product from two aspects: 1. whether the original function is increased.2.Whether new function are added .When existing functions are enhanced or new functions are added, new products are rated as useful innovations or inventions.

For example, the main function of a car is to take the place of walking, speed is an important indicator to evaluate its capabilities, if the speed of the new product is faster than the speed of the old product, then the new product has been strengthened in the acting function, which is a useful innovation or invention. At the same time, if the new products add music playing, goods placement, automatic parking, driverless and other functions on the basis of the old products, the function of the new products will increase, which is a useful innovation or invention.

1.3 Convenience
Evaluate the operation of the two products and assess whether the new product is more convenient. The convenience here means that the operation steps can be reduced or physical exertion can be saved.

For example, using a car can make people’s travel more convenient, because it can save physical energy. For a vehicle’s transmission system, stepless transmission is more convenient than manual gear shifting, because stepless transmission does not require additional gear change in the speed control, thus reducing the operation steps.

1.4 Weight
Evaluate the quality of the two products and evaluate whether the new product has a greater weight advantage. The weight here refers to the mass in physics, which is a measure of the amount of the object, measured by a balance or a scale.For example, in the aerospace field, if the performance is satisfied, the smaller the better quality of the parts, which can save fuel.But in some lifting equipments, the quality of the parts needs to be increased to increase the weight.

1.5 Efficiency
Evaluate the efficiency of both products and assess whether new products are more efficient. There are two definitions of efficiency here. On the one hand, it refers to the workload per unit of time. On the other hand, it refers to the utilization of energy.

For example, if we take a welding robot as an example, the greater the number of oil tanks welded per unit time, the higher the efficiency; the higher the solar energy utilization rate of solar power generation equipment, the higher the efficiency.

1.6 Stability
Evaluate the stability of the two products and assess whether the new product is more stable in terms of stability. Stability here refers to the ability of a device or part to remain operational over long periods of time.For example, when assessing the stability of a car, it is necessary to evaluate the time for which it can continue working normally or the mileage it travels. The longer the time and the longer the mileage, the better the stability.

1.7 Reliability
Evaluate the reliability of the two products and assess whether the new product is more reliable in terms of reliability. The reliability here refers to the ability of a product to perform a prescribed function within a specified period of time under specified conditions.

In particular, reliability emphasizes “the ability to perform specified functions.” For example, to evaluate the reliability of a welding robot: when it is working properly, it is less reliable if many of the welding quality is not up to the design requirements

1.8 Costs
Evaluate the cost of the two products and assess whether the new product has more cost advantages.The cost here includes three parts: direct material cost, direct labor cost and manufacturing cost.Direct material cost refers to the cost of various raw materials and main materials, auxiliary materials, outsourcing semi-finished products, spare parts for repair, packaging materials, fuel and so on, which can form product entities or contribute to product formation.Direct labor costs refer to the wages of production workers who are directly engaged in the manufacture of products, including: basic wages and bonuses of the nature of wages, allowances, labour insurance benefits, and other subsidies.Excluding the wages of other workers, engineers and managers who are not directly engaged in the manufacture of products, as well as other employees working in the workshop or factory management or sales department.Manufacturing cost refers to the indirect expenses incurred by the enterprise for the production of products and the provision of labor services, including: depreciation expenses, repair expenses, machine material consumption, amortization of low-value consumable goods, labor protection expenses, utilities, office expenses, and travel expenses,seasonal and repair period stoppage loss, etc.

1.9  Environmental protection
From the perspective of environmental protection, it is assessed whether the new product has an advantage over the old product. The environmental protection here includes three aspects: the protection of the natural environment, the protection of human life and living environment, and the protection of the creature in Earth.

For example, in terms of energy consumption, new energy vehicles that consume electric energy are more environmentally friendly than traditional cars that consume gasoline because they can effectively reduce the emission of carbon and other harmful gases;

1.10 Appearance
Assess whether the new product has an advantage in appearance. The appearance comparison of the product varies from person to person, and here are some points for appearance evaluation:

1.10.1 Uniformity of appearance and function
The function of the product often affects the appearance of the product to a great extent, and that is why the appearance based on the function of the product is meaningful.

1.10.2 Application  of  Materials
The product material not only restricts the structure and shape of the product, but also makes the product have different appearance quality and decoration effect.

1.10.3 Colors and Structures
As an artistic language, color first acts on the visual experience of human beings and has the effect of “snapping people first”. The appearance structure of a product is the bearer of function and form. It is an important element that constitutes the product form. It is not only an external manifestation of product function, but also an important carrier of product form.

1.10.4 Humanization
Modern product design is always the same theme-people-oriented, the concern for human itself gradually formed an overwhelming and development trend. The design that satisfies one’s own physiological and psychological needs can cause the heart of the consumer moved, shocked and aftertaste.

1.10.5 Novelty  and  Retroness
The novelty and retroness of the appearance of the product are in line with the aesthetic needs of the public. We hope to see something new as well as the retro product which can be relished.



My name is Hui-min Li. I am a phD and working at Tongji University,China now. I mainly study Triz theory and 3D printing. Tel: 86-021-65989612,E-mail:

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