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Engineering design should result in a product that performs its function efficiently and economically within the prevailing legal, social, safety, and reliability requirements. This introductory article discusses some key considerations in design, material selection, and manufacturing that a materials engineer should take into account to satisfy such requirements. It includes a brief section on concurrent engineering, which companies use to ensure that all needed input is obtained and addressed concurrently throughout the product lifecycle, including material selection and processing, product design, cost analysis, manufacturing, recyclability, and performance.

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