An approach to systematically deriving the optimal use of operator-in-the-loop machinery is presented. The operation is considered as a set of design variables that similarly to classical design variables such as geometry and materials may be manipulated with a view to reach certain performances. The emphasis of the paper is on mobile loader cranes and an example on the development of the lifting capacity diagram of such a crane is used to illustrate the potential benefits of employing the presented approach. In general, physical data is not given for the loader crane due to limited space, however, the authors will be happy to provide more details for anyone interested.

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