P17701: ABVI Upcycling: Cotton Insulation

Problem Definition

Table of Contents

Team Vision for Problem Definition Phase

Major goals for this phase include defining our problem and identifying what results our team is expected to deliver to our customer. We plan to obtain customer feedback to confirm our assumed project goals as well as gather as much knowledge as possible on cotton insulation from both the customer and general research. In order to be a productive team, we will use the first three weeks to establish roles and group norms.

During this phase our team communicated with the customer to obtain our “Voice of Customer” requirements. All team members performed some matter of preliminary research to gather more information and better understand cotton insulation. The team also developed a plan to move forward with the project and laid out a tentative schedule. Our team came together and developed roles and responsibilities that will remain with our group until the completion of this project. Of course, these roles will develop further as the project progresses and becomes more complex.

Project Summary

Due to the number of clothing donations brought to Goodwill stores, Goodwill Industries is experiencing a surplus of clothing material which they can not resell as clothing. In order to maximize their returns on recycling this material, Goodwill and ABVI are interested in a solution which will allow them to turn the surplus into a profitable product. This process would both reduce the amount of material being put into landfills, and contribute to a more valuable end-product compared to material sold for rags or other low-tech products. An MSD team from the previous year developed a hypothetical facility to process fabrics, but a firm idea of what the product is to be developed in said facility, is necessary.

The focus of this project is to design and test cotton and/or cotton rich fiber based insulation, concerning both thermal and acoustic properties. Another goal is to have the cotton-based insulation perform equal to or better than fiberglass insulation, with respect to thermal, acoustic and fire-resistance properties. The products will ideally make use of cotton fabrics that may have a low percentage of synthetic fibers. Link to 1-page project summary or project charter

Use Cases

Key Deliverables


Customer Requirements (Needs)

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Related Document: Customer Requirements

Engineering Requirements (Metrics & Specifications)

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Related Documents: Engineering Requirements


House of Quality

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Related Document: House of Quality

Benchmark Products

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Related Document: Benchmarks

Design Review Materials

The documents below summarize the Problem Definition Review with customer:

Plans for next phase

LucasJackling_3-Week Plan

MitchGoepel_3-Week Plan

DenningCrenshaw_3-Week Plan

SamKon_3-Week Plan

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