The ever-increasing competitiveness, due to the market globalization, has forced the industries to modify their design and production strategies. A key point is the development of products that fulfil the individual customer needs as close as possible. ETO companies manufacture new products according to the customer technical requirements given in the request for proposal.
Computational Design Synthesis is the research area focused on activities to automate the design phase in the production of products such ETO structures. In this context, Knowledge Based Engineering applications are usually applied to automate design routines and to implement a multidisciplinary product design. Knowledge should be elicited and formalized, so that it can allow the past cases retrieval and the connection between customer specifications and the product configuration tasks. This paper proposes an approach for the rapid definition of the product structure related to a ETO product, including the early cost evaluation in configurations. The research scope aims at defining a framework to support the knowledge repository, which is the Knowledge Based used to design new products and estimate their costs.