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Analyzing environmental sustainability methods for use earlier in the product lifecycle

Brundage, Michael P., Bernstein, William Z., Hoffenson, Steven, Chang, Qing, Nishi, Hidetaka, Kliks, Timothy, Morris, K.C.
Journal of cleaner production 2018 v.187 pp. 877-892
Internet, decision making, sustainable manufacturing
Environmental sustainability information in the manufacturing industry is not easily shared between stages in the product lifecycle. In particular, reliable manufacturing-related information for assessing the sustainability of a product is often unavailable at the design stage. Instead, designers rely on aggregated, often outdated information or make decisions by analogy (e.g., a similar manufacturing process for a similar product yielded X and Y results). However, smart manufacturing and the Internet of Things have potential to bridge the gap between design and manufacturing through data and knowledge sharing. This paper analyzes environmental sustainability assessment methods to enable more accurate decisions earlier in design. The techniques and methods are categorized based on the stage they apply to in the product lifecycle, as described by the Systems Integration of Manufacturing Applications (SIMA) reference architecture. Furthermore, opportunities for aligning standard data representation to promote sustainability assessment during design are identified.