Case Studies and White Papers

Employing Power to "Right-Size" Design of Experiments

Published: March 2014
Authors: Mark Anderson, Patrick Whitcomb

This article provides insights on how many runs are required to make it very likely that a test will reveal any important effects. Due to the mathematical complexities of multifactor design of experiments (DOE) matrices, the calculations for adequate power and precision are not practical to do by 'hand' so the focus is kept at a high level--scoping out the forest rather than detailing all the trees. By example, reader will learn the price that must be paid for an adequately-sized experiment and the penalty incurred by conveniently grouping hard-to-change factors.

Publication: The ITEA Journal

Published: March 2014
Authors: Mark Anderson, Patrick Whitcomb

Due to operational or physical considerations, standard factorial and response surface method (RSM) design of experiments (DOE) often prove to be unsuitable. In such cases a computer-generated statistically-optimal design fills the breech. This article explores vital mathematical properties for evaluating alternative designs with a focus on what is really important for industrial experimenters. To assess “goodness of design” such evaluations must consider the model choice, specific optimality criteria (in particular D and I), precision of estimation based on the fraction of design space (FDS), the number of runs to achieve required precision, lack-of-fit testing, and so forth. With a focus on RSM, all these issues are considered at a practical level, keeping engineers and scientists in mind. This brings to the forefront such considerations as subject-matter knowledge from first principles and experience, factor choice and the feasibility of the experiment design.

Publication: Journal of Statistical Science and Application

Optimal Experimental Design with R

Published: May 2012
Authors: Mark Anderson, Wayne Adams

BOOK REVIEW: This book provides guidance on the construction of experiments, including sample size calculations, hypothesis testing, and confidence estimation.

Publication: Technometrics

Framing a QbD Design Space with Tolerance Intervals

Published: May 2012
Author: Mark Anderson

Given the push for Quality by Design (QbD) by FDA and drug agencies worldwide, statistical methods are becoming increasingly vital for pharmaceutical manufacturers. Response surface methods for DOE provide powerful tools to manage the impact of multiple factors and their interactions.

Publication: Pharma QbD

Published: March 2012
Authors: Patrick Whitcomb, Mark Anderson

Given the push for Quality by Design (QbD) by the US FDA and equivalent agencies worldwide, statistical methods are becoming increasingly vital for pharmaceutical manufacturers. Design of experiments (DOE) is a primary tool because “it provides structured, organized method for determining the relationship between factors affecting a process and the response of that process." Tolerance intervals (TI) verify that the design space will be robust for meeting the manufacturing specifications on every individual unit, not just on average.

Publication: Special Issue Article featuring a paper presented at 11th Annual ENBIS Conference

Design of Experiments for Non-Manufacturing Processes: Benefits, Challenges, and Some Examples

Published: November 2011
Authors: Mark Anderson, Jiju Antony, Shirley Coleman, Rachel Johnson, Douglas Montgomery

Design of experiments (DOE) is a powerful technique for process optimization that has been widely deployed in almost all types of manufacturing processes and is used extensively in product process design and development. There have not been as many efforts to apply powerful quality improvement techniques such as DOE to improve non-manufacturing processes. Factor levels often involve changing the way people work and so have to be handled carefully. It is even more important to get everyone working as a team. This paper explores the benefits and challenges in the application of DOE in non-manufacturing arena.

Publication: Journal of Engineering Manufacture

Published: January 2011
Author: Mark Anderson

Statistical methods are becoming increasingly important for the pharmaceutical industry. The FDA and other regulatory and standard-setting organizations are moving swiftly to establish Quality by Design (QbD) guidance relevant to the needs of pharmaceutical manufacturing. The FDA suggests the use of design of experiments (DoE) because it provides a structured, organized method for determining the relationship between factors affecting a process and the response of that process.

Publication: Pharmaceutical Manufacturing

Published: September 2010
Authors: Mark Anderson, Patrick Whitcomb

The statistical design of experiments is an essential ingredient of successful product development and improvement, and provides an efficient and scientific approach to obtaining meaningful information. In contrast to traditional vary one-factor-at-a-time (OFAT) experimentation, variables are changed together, permitting evaluation of interactions. Standard texts give details about the construction of specific test plans, such full and fractional factorial, and response surface designs, and the analysis of the resulting data. This article gives a brief overview. The focus here is on the fundamental elements of experimental design: defining the purpose and scope of the experiment, differentiating between alternative types of experimental variables, understanding the underlying environment and constraints, and conducting stage-wise experimentation. Brief discussions dealing with the statistical analysis tools, multiple response variables, and some historical background are also provided.

Publication: Kirk-Othmer Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology

Published: March 2010
Author: Mark Anderson

To accelerate their product development, Z Corporation tooled up their engineers with the knowledge and software to do statistical design of experiments (DOE). The company developed a procedure by which every factor with a reasonable chance of affecting product performance is systematically and simultaneously evaluated via these controlled experiments.

Making Use of Mixture Design to Optimize Olive Oil - A Case Study

Published: August 2009
Authors: Mark Anderson, Patrick Whitcomb

Olive oil, an important commodity of the Mediterranean region and a main ingredient of their world-renowned diet (see sidebar), must meet stringent European guidelines to achieve the coveted status of "extra virgin." Oils made from single cultivars (a particular cultivated variety of the olive tree) will at times fall into the lower "virgin" category due to seasonal variation. Then it becomes advantageous to blend in one or more superior oils. This is a great case to become acquainted with the tools of mixture design for optimal formulation.

Publication: ASQ Chemical and Process Industries Division Newsletter