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Vladimir Petrov, ISRAEL. E-mail:
This paper presents a system of the laws of technical system evolution.
A research on developing the laws of technical evolution has
been conducted by the author since 1973. Principal theoretical statements were
formulated in 1984. As a foundation for the research, the laws of technical
system evolution were selected which were originally developed by Genrich
Altshuller, the creator of the Theory of Inventve Problem Solving. (1), (2).
In addition to Altshuller, the following researchers
contributed to study and developments the laws of technical system evolution: B.
Goldowsky; B. Zlotin and A. Zusmann; Yu. Salamatov and I. Kondrakov; S. Litvin
and V. Guerassimov; I. Vertkin; G. Ivanov; V. Petrov and E. Zlotin; M. Rubin; V.
Fey; A. Pinyaev; I. Zakharov; V. Dubrov; G. Frenklakh; G. Ezersky; A. Bystritsky
Form our point of view, until now, no unified vision of the
laws of technical system evolution was available. All the above-mentioned
authors presented generic and specific aspects of the laws. There are several
systems available which describe the laws of technical system evolution. In our
opinion, most successful are the systems developed by G. Altshuller; B. Zlotin
and A. Zusmann; and Yu. Salamatov.
This paper presents a system of laws, which, in the opinion
of the author, makes it possible to perform forecasts of technology evolution
more thoroughly and easier.
2. SYSTEM OF LAWS
2.1. General information
Evolution of all objects of the material world including
technological objects are governed by certain laws. Among the most general laws
are the laws of dialectics (the law of the unity (interpenetration) of
opposites; the law of transformation of quantity into quality; and the law of
the negation of the negation).
A system of the laws of technical system evolution must have
three levels: demands, functions and systems.
A hierarchy of the system of laws developed by the authors is
presented in Figure 1.
The laws of system evolution can be divided to two groups:
2.2. Laws of dialectics in technology evolution.
Most general laws of the laws of dialectics are:
The Law of the Unity (Interpenetration) of Opposites;
The Law of Transformation of Quantity into Quality;
The Law of the Negation of the Negation
The Law of the Unity (Interpenetration) of Opposites
serves as a source for creation of all objects including material objects, where
technical systems belong. The law defines one of the key TRIZ concepts:
The Law of Transformation of Quantity into Quality
defines a general mechanism of evolution. Quantitative changes in a system take
place continuously accordingly the S-curve of evolution. When a certain limit of
quantitative evolution is reached, a system experiences qualitative changes.
Further evolution of the system starts according to a new S-curve. During this
process, quantitative changes take place continuously whereas qualitative
changes take place in discrete steps.
To imagine a full diagram of evolution of technical systems,
it is necessary to take into account a so-called “line of life of a technical
system”, a regularity defined by Genrich Altshuller (1, pp. 113-119).
An essence of the Law of the Negation of the Negation
is that a process of progressive evolution consists of a series of relative
repetitions, as if going through the same phases again and again. However, each
repetition takes place at a higher level of evolution by using new elements,
materials, and technologies. We can say, that in this case we have a
spiral-shaped evolution. For example, fashion design is the most obvious example
of spiral-shaped evolution.
2.3. Regularities of demand evolution
Knowing regularities of DEMAND evolution makes it possible to
predict future demands. This, in turn, allows us to define what functions and
systems will be needed to meet these new demands. This knowledge also makes it
possible to discover radically new directions of technical system evolution
The regularities of demand evolution are governed by the
law of demand growth. A general trend of demand evolution states that
meeting of demands evolves from meeting primitive demands to meeting
intelligent and creative demands.
The regularities of demand evolution separate along the two
directions: appearance of new demands and evolution of existing demands.
The demands can be met by available and new functions.
Changing of these functions, in turn, is governed by certain regularities as
Known functions can be delivered by the available
systems or by creation of new systems.
New functions can be delivered by using the existing
systems in a new context or by creating qualitatively new systems.
Among the laws of demand evolution are:
idealization of demands, growths of dynamics of demands,
coordination of demands, merging or specialization of demands.
Development of new demands is conducted in accord with a
technique proposed by the author (5).
2.4. Regularities of function evolution
Let us study some regularities of FUNCTION evolution, for
instance, poly-functionality and mono-functionality.
At the beginning of evolution, systems are created as
poly-functional, or universal. At the final stage of evolution
systems become more specific, and further evolve by separation of
evolution of specific functions. As a result, the systems become
Regularities of poly- and mono-functionality
are based on the mechanisms of expansion and convolution of
The laws of function evolution are similar to the laws of
demand evolution, however they should be regarded with respect to functionality:
making functions more ideal (idealization of functions); growth of the degree
of function dynamics; coordination of functions; transition to mono or
Idealization of functions is achieved by increasing
the degree of function dynamics, then by transition to mono- or
poly-functionality and by further coordination of functions.
Regularities of expansion and convolution of functions
are presented by the author in (11,12).
3. THE LAWS OF SYSTEM ORGANIZATION
This group of laws governs a newly created system.
The laws of system organization define criteria of
vitality for newly created technical systems
Among the main laws of the laws of system organization are:
systemity; completeness of system parts; abundance of system parts;
existence of links between system parts as well as between the system and its
supersystem; minimal coordination of parts and parameters of a system.
A structure of the main laws of system organization is
presented in Figure 2.
3.1. The law of systemity
Systemity is a coordinated interaction between all
objects, including environment where the objects are located. This interaction
must be fully balanced.
A system must be designated to meet a certain
A system must possess a certain structure,
which provides the achievement of the purpose.
within the system
and with its supersystem must provide a full balance, which means that there
must be no negative effects caused by the relationships or the interactions.
Relationships and interactions
of a given system as
well as environment must be taken into account.
Regularities of evolution
A system meets its purpose if the system
achieves a general goal and delivers all required principal
and auxiliary functions.
A system structure consists of the system itself,
its subsystems, supersystem and environment.
A systemity is taken into account by using the following
3.2. The law of system completeness
The system completeness can be functional and
Functional completeness must ensure delivery of a
general goal of the system and correspond to the functional purpose of the
system, and in the first place, to the main function of the system. This
means that all principal and auxiliary functions must be fulfilled
Structural completeness of the system must provide presence
of all required elements and links in the system.
A main function of the system is provided by a main
working unit of the system. Energy supply and control are the principal
functions of the system. These functions are provided by an energy source and a
system comprising a control unit. Most important among auxiliary functions are
conversion and transport of energy and information.
As a conclusion, the law of system completeness
describes the least but necessary set of system parts that provide minimal
working behavior of the system. In general, the following parts are necessary:
Energy transformation can be provided, for instance, by
an engine whereas energy and information transport can be provided
by transmission (links).
Also, a general case requires the following system parts: the
working unit; energy to provide the working tool; and a system
for control over the working unit.
3.3. The law of abundance
ABUNDANCE is a regularity which indicates that
about 80% of work is delivered by approximately 20% of functions,
elements and links in a system. When developing a system it is necessary to
take into account, that in order to deliver the required work approximately
80% of auxiliary elements and links will be needed in addition to
those main elements and links that are supposed to deliver a main function.
These auxiliary elements and links will provide 20% of the work only.
This results in the necessity to consider some extra consumption of material,
energy and information when designing a new system (approximately 20% to
deliver main function and 80% to deliver auxiliary functions).
The same ratio is valid for execution of any type of work. A
major volume of work (80-90% of readiness) is fulfilled during 20% of time; and
remaining 80% of time is required to finish the work completely.
Due to this, often the work is not fully completed.
Abundance can be functional and structural.
3.4. The law of existence of links.
This law was first formulated by G. Altshuller in the
beginning of the 70's as the law of energy conductivity in a system (1).
The law of Altshuller is a particular case of the law of
links, which was formulated by the author in the end of the 70's.
Without considering all possible links and influences a
system can not be well-behaved. Moreover, the system can create ecological and
other problems, negatively changing the environment, supersystem, human health,
neighboring systems and so on.
Links (interrelations) and influences (interferences) can be
of the following types:
1. 1. By level
1.1. Between subsystems
1.2. Between system and subsystems
4. By remoteness
1.3. Between systems
1.4. Between system and supersystem
1.5. Between system and environment
5. By type of control
2. By quality
6. By type of interaction
3. By type of interaction (field)
7. By type of action
7.1. Necessary or desired
7.2. Non-necessary or non-desired
Formulation and recognition of links is conducted with the
use of special tables and in a sequence, which were developed by the author.
3.5. The law of coordination
A group of laws of technical system organization introduces
minimal coordination which is needed to provide a minimal working behavior of a
system. A minimal coordination is required to avoid negative interference
between system parts.
Minimal coordination can be achieved at the levels of
functions, structure and matching the structure and the functions. Coordination
can be functional, structural and function-structural.
4. LAWS OF TECHNICAL SYSTEM EVOLUTION
4.1. A structure of laws of evolution
The laws of evolution define a general direction of technical
system evolution. A structure of these laws is shown in Figure 3.
Main laws of technical system evolution are:
Increase the degree of ideality.
Irregular evolution of system parts.
Increase the degree of system dynamics.
Transition of a system to a supersystem.
4.2. The law of increase of the degree of ideality
A general direction of technology evolution is defined by the
law of increasing the degree of ideality of technical systems. (Fig. 3).
In turn, the general direction of making a system more ideal
is defined by the laws of Increase of the degree of system dynamics;
Coordination; and Transition of a system to a supersystem.
An Absolutely Ideal System (which is impossible) is defined
as a system which does not exist but all possible functions are delivered at the
required moment of time in the required space with 100% of effectiveness,
whereas there is no consumption of power, material, energy and information.
Therefore, Absolutely Ideal System must deliver an infinite number of functions,
at the required moment of time and in the required space without producing
negative effects and the required expenses do not exist. The use of information
is not regarded as expenses in the case where information is available for free.
A more ideal system always uses more free of charge information.
A degree of ideality can be expressed as:
I - the degree of ideality;
F - a function delivered of a positive effect;
P - negative effect, expenses;
i - a number of variable F;
j - a number of variable P.
(*This formulae (in more simplified form)
was first proposed by Boris Goldovsky in 1974.)
Directions and paths of increasing the degree of ideality
There are two directions of increasing the degree of
1.1. Shrinking of a zone of a given
technical system: ideal technical system - working unit - function, which
is delivered by the working unit. In this case, the system approaches
1.2. Expansion of a zone of consideration of
a technical system: we consider a function of the system, a function of a
supersystem and, finally, a demand. In this direction it is possible to
consider alternative methods of meeting the recognized demand. In this way
new solution principles can be suggested.
Methods of Idealization
2.1. Reduction of some parts of a system or a process.
2.2. Increase of a number of delivered functions
2.3. Increase of specific parameters.
2.4. Using advanced equipment, materials, processes.
2.5. Elimination of undesired effects .
2.6. Using of disposable objects.
2.7. Using block-structured designs.
2.8. Using expensive materials in necessary zones only.
2.9. Using resources.
The use of the laws of system idealization
These methods of idealization will be presented by the laws
of Increase of the degree of system dynamics; Coordination; and
Transition of a system to a supersystem.
4.3. The law of coordination of structure
4.3.1. Structure of the law of coordination
Coordination is conducted to avoid harmful effects or to
amplify useful effects. A structure of the law of coordination:
1. Coordination can be:
Coordination is conduced by the levels of:
Types of coordination:
3.1. In time,
3.2. In space,
3.3. of structure,
3.4. by conditions,
3.5. of parameters.
The law of coordination is a general law of system
evolution. It includes:
Coordination of systems
- Coordination of subsystems
- Coordination of supersystems
- Coordination of external environment
When coordinating a system, first its structure should be
coordinated. By structure we will understand form, location and interaction of
A structure of a system is defined by its elements and
links. They can be:
System terms of a structure, its elements and links, as well
as their types (material, energy, information) are valid for subsystems,
supersystem and external environment.
Parameters can be:
Specific regularities of coordination of structure are
available. For instance, elements and materials, shapes, links, parameters (in
particular, their rhythms)
4.4. The law of increase of the degree of system dynamics
A structural diagram of the law is shown in Figure 4.
The law of increasing the degree of dynamics includes the
A law of transition of a system structure
from macro- to microlevel.
§ The law of increase of degree of
§ The law of increase of information
4.5. The law of transition of a system structure from macro-
The law of transition of a system structure from macro- to
microlevel includes the following sub-laws:
4.5.1. Change of a scale of a technical system
A scale of a technical system is changed by transition
from supersystem to a system, from the system to its subsystem and substance
(see Figure 5). The ultimate goal is transition from the supersystem to
substance (that is, replacing a system with a substance).
4.5.2. Change of system linking
Change of a degree of the system linking is provided by
increasing the degree of fragmentation (dispersibility) of a substance.
In particular, it can be done by using capillaries-porous materials and
increasing the degree of void in a substance (Figure 6).
22.214.171.124. Increase of the degree of fragmentation
In addition to the above mentioned, the increase of the
degree of fragmentation (dispersibility) of substances involves change of
hardness and plasticity of a material. First of all, the working unit undergoes
The working unit (tool) can be monolithic or
non-monolithic (consisting of several parts). A material of the tool can be
hard, non-hard (soft), liquid, gaseous or a
This sequence is featured by the transition from solid
monolithic system (1) to entirely flexible (elastic) object (2);
to an object consisting of powder (3), to gel (4), to liquid
(5), to aerosol (6), to gas (7), and finally, to a field
(8). In particular, it can be plasma.
In addition, any combination of mentioned states are
possible. To raise the effectiveness of operation, technological effects
applicable to any given state can be used.
A complete diagram presenting the regularity is more complex.
It includes additional transitions from the state (1) to state (2), from (2) to
(3) and transitions from states (1) and (2) to capillaries-porous materials (CPM).
126.96.36.199. Transition to capillaries-porous materials
Transition from monolithic object (solid or soft) to separate
parts can be done according to a sequence presented by G. Altshuller in
Inventive Standard 2.2.3 which he called “transition to capillaries-porous
Let us show this regularity in more detail.
First, we describe major phases introduced by the regularity
(Fig. 8), and afterwards we show more specific transitions (Fig. 9).
Figure 8 presents the regularity of transition to
capillaries-porous materials (CPM):
(1) or elastic (2).
Solid substance, hard
Solid substance with a single cavity: a cavity in
a shell (A).
Solid substance with many cavities (cells): a
perforated object or a cavity divided by partitions (B).
Capillaries-porous materials: CPM (C).
Capillaries-porous materials (CPM) at microlevel:
ceolites, selicogels and biological membranes (shown as mCPM at the
Transitions from (A) to (B), from (B)
к (C) and from (C) to (D) are similar
and are governed by the following regularity of using cavities: 1) cavity -
2) a cavity with a structure (a cavity which has a certain structure), - 3)
cavity filled with substance - 4) civility filled with a substance which can be
controlled by fields with the use of various technological effects (Figure
More detailed sequence is a combination of the sequences
A particular case of the line of fragmentation is a line of
increasing “voidness” developed by G. Altshuller (4).
4.6. Transition to more complex and energy- saturated
forms of motion
Let us examine the transition to more complex and
energy-saturated forms of motion, which first of all, relate to the
As shown in Fig. 6, such transition is realized by
increasing a specific saturation of energy in a system and transition to the
fields that have a higher degree of control (see Fig. 10).
4.6.1. Increase of a specific energy saturation.
Increase of specific energy saturation of the working
unit makes it possible not only to raise effectiveness and quality of
manufacturing processes but also to create new manufacturing processes.
4.6.2. Transition to field with higher degree of control
Increase of a degree of control over fields takes place
in two directions:
Replacement of a field (Fig. 11)
Transition MONO-BI-POLY for fields (Fig. 12).
188.8.131.52. Replacement of a field type
Replacement of a field type with a field that has a higher
degree of control can be done in the following order: gravitational,
thermal, mechanical, electromagnetic, chemical, biologic. Combination of
these fields is possible. This regularity is shown in Fig.11. Let us describe
the trends of change of the most frequently used fields in technical systems.
184.108.40.206. Transition of a field to Mono-Bi-Poly
Efficiency of a working unit can be increased by the use of a
combination of fields according to the Mono-Bi-Poly diagram (Fig. 12).
Dynamics of evolution of the working unit indicates that in
the beginning of the evolution process, the use of fields is limited to a single
field (F1), and further its type is changed according to
the regularity mentioned above (Fig. 11).
During the next phase of evolution, another field is added to
the existing one. As a result, we observe a transition from MONO-field to
Bi-field. Combination of the fields of the same physical type or of different
types is possible. The fields of the same type can be identical (F1 +
F1) or have dissimilar characteristics (F1 + F1').
Similarly to combining systems, further evolution is featured
by the coordination of the fields used in a system. For instance, (F1 +
F1~) is a coordination of permanent field F1 with a variable Field
F1~. Later, the fields can be replaced with a single field (MONO-field,
F0). This is process is known as convolution.
The next transition can use more than two fields thus forming
a POLY-system of fields (Fig. 13).
4.7. The law of increasing the degree of control over a
Rising the degree of dynamics of control is known as
the law of increasing the degree of control over a system.
Rising the degree of dynamics of control results from increasing the
degree of substance-field interactions in a system and increasing
information saturation in a system.
4.7.1. The law of increasing the degree of substance-field interactions in a
4.7.2. The law of increasing information saturation in a system
The law of increasing information saturation in a system
means decreasing the degree of human involvement to the work provided by a
technical system. This results in the use of automated systems, self-evolution
and self-reproduction (Fig. 15). Modern trends indicate that material objects
are replaced with software..
The raise of the degree of control over a system results
from transition from non-controllable system to the control
over deviances, then to the system with feedback, to
adaptive system, to self-educational and
self-organizational system, and, finally, to
self-evolving and self-reproducing system. The rising the
degree of dynamics of control describes the process of automation.
4.8. The law of transition to supersystem.
4.8.1. General Information
The law of transition to supersystem was developed by G.
Altshuller (2), and is presented as a transition mono-bi-poly (Fig. 16).
4.9. General direction of system evolution
As a rule, general evolution of systems is not limited to any
single law, but takes place in a combined form. Apart from that, evolution takes
place in space as well: from a single dot to a line, from the line to a
plane, from the plane to volume. This trend is shown in Fig. 17.
Transition from the line to the plane and volume
can be done by the use of curves in the plane and space (see Fig. 17a).
Transition from the plane to the volume: the use of a
backside of a plane. In particular, it can be achieved by using the Mobius tape
(see Fig. 17b).
Internal areas can be used in the volume (the
“nested doll” principle). In particular, this can be Kisilyov tape
(similarly to the Mobius tape, but in volume). This trend is shown in Fig. 17c.
Other geometric effects can be used as well.
Finally, pseudo-volumes can be used. For instance,
stereoscopic images, holograms, and 3D imaging in computer systems.
Further idealization of a system is achieved through the use
5. TECHNICAL SYSTEM FORECAST WITH THE USE OF TRIZ
The tasks of forecast of technical system evolution is a task
of search which is conducted with the use of the system of Inventive Standards
and Laws of Technical System Evolution. The process of the forecast is organized
by using a special technology of forecast which includes the technology of
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About the author
Vladimir Petrov, TRIZ Master, Board Member of International TRIZ
Association, Scientific consultant of ETRIA, President of the TRIZ Association
of Israel (ATI) and President of P.V.F. Solutions (TRIZ consulting company) has
30 years of experience in TRIZ and widely recognize as one of the foremost TRIZ
theorists, scientists, and problem solvers in the world today. He was one of the
first followers and lecture college of Genrich Altshuller, the founder of TRIZ.
V. Petrov organized the TRIZ scientific schools of inventive problem solvers in
USSR, Czech, Bulgaria Vietnam and Israel and raised more then 6000 students
worldwide. He also solved more then 5000 technical and engineering problems for
different companies in USA, Germany and Israel.
Copyright © 2002 by Vladimir Petrov
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