P08043: Mass Spectrometry Sample Prep

Identify Customer Needs

Table of Contents

Step 1. Gather Raw Data From Customers

Interactions with Customers

Prepare a report on your customer interactions. Following the text by Ulrich and Eppinger, this report may include

  1. Transcripts of Interview(s) with customers
  2. Audio Recordings
  3. Notes
  4. Video Recordings
  5. Still Photography

Provide a transcript, or at least a paraphrased version of the interviews that you conduct. Allow the students interested in this project to understand the types of questions you asked the sponsor, and to hear how the sponsor responded. Be sure to note the date, time, location, and participants in the interview. The format below may be helpful.

Customers Interviews

Interviewers: Dr. Day (ME Faculty Guide)
19 September 2007, Dr. Day's Office
Review - Initial Proposed SD Project
Interviewers: Dr. Andy High & Dr. Clive Slaughter (Medical Doctor)
3 October 2007, Dr. Day's Office
Medical Doctors (St. Jude Children's Hospital)
Transcript Oct 3rd
Interviewers: Dr. Day, Steve Weinstein
11 October 2007, Dr. Day's Office
Teleconference Review
Interviewers: Dr. Day (ME Faculty Guide)
16 October 2007, Dr. Day's Office
Teleconference Review II
Interviewers: Dr. Andy High & Dr. Clive Slaughter (Medical Doctor)
13 November 2007, Dr. Day's Office
Transcript Nov 13th


Step 2. Interpret Raw Data in Terms of Customer Needs

  1. Apply an organic solvent to a slide
a) Air Brush
b) Ink Jet Printer
c) Blade Coating
d) Spin Coating
e) Electro spray
f) Sublimation
g) Curtain coating
h) mesh assisted method
i) dot matrix printer
  1. Coating variables controllable so that medical doctors and a Masters Thesis student can gain more insight into the coating process and how it effects image quality via further experimentation.
  2. Record the coating process
  3. Slide contains a known geometry/pattern
  4. Maximize signal strength
  5. Measure the film thickness
  6. Control of temperature and humidity
  7. Organic solvent has same viscosity and surface tension as medical solvent
  8. Measure droplet density
  9. Control number layers
  10. Control dry time
  11. Measure diffusion (minimize lateral)
  12. Record time between each layer

Step 3. Organize the Needs into a Hierarchy

public/P08043 Tree Diagram.jpg

public/P08043 Tree Diagram.jpg

Step 4. Establish the Relative Importance of the Needs

Needs Summary
Need The Product Needs to Importance
Need 5.1 Image quality The MALDI image quality is a directly related to the coating application/process. Understanding the coating process with help improve the MALDI tissue images.
Need 5.2 Coating devices The coating devices needs to apply an organic solvent to a slide. All three coating devices will be evaluated and compared.
Need 5.6 Slide Diffusion of the slides need to have traverse diffusion, minimize lateral diffusion. Traverse diffusion improves the MALDI image quality while lateral diffusion results in poor image quality.
Need 3.1 Organic Solvent The organic solvent will be used for all three coating devices. The organic solvent needs to have same surface tension and viscosity as medical solvent.
Need 2.3 Diffusion Needs to have a high speed camera, scale and a slide. The diffusion on the slide is the end project of this project.
Need 1.3 Experimental apparatus The experimental apparatus must be interchangeable with all three coating devices. One experimental apparatus platform will be used for all coating devices.
Need 2.1 GUI - ink jet printer The GUI will control the spray process. A GUI will help standardize the spray process.
Need 2.2 GUI - blade coating device The GUI will control the blade. A GUI will help standardize the spray process.
Need 4.2 Coating devices Must be robust. The design of device and interface must be robust for research purposes.
Need 4.4 Coating Devices Must be repeatable. The device and interface must be repeatable for statistical comparisons.

Step 5. Reflect on the Results and the Process

Our needs reflect the primary customer objectives and needs, Dr. Day. These devices will be used in a MS thesis project to better understand the effects of the coating process on the MALDI image quality.

Step 6. Engineering Tasks for Customer Needs

Step 7. Medical Organic Solvent

Acetonitrile Properties


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