This paper presents an extended relational database system with the following features: (1) Hierarchically structured objects can be represented and manipulated integrally, (2) Design entities and design concepts can be represented and manipulated at higher abstract levels, and (3) Addition of multiple inference mechanisms to relational algebra allows intelligent solutions be developed within this robust representational environment. This Extended Relational Data Base has been successfully used to automate the conceptual analysis process of mechanical design.

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