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On the integration of environmental aspects into early product development
KTH, Superseded Departments, Machine Design.
2001 (English)Licentiate thesis, monograph (Other scientific)
Abstract [en]

Environmental consideration has been identified as a majorissue of increasing importance, along with the problems ofincreasing world population and increasing consumption percapita rates. The goal of a sustainable development isdifficult to reach and requires major changes in all sectors ofthe society; in industry, government, and among consumers.Companies have realized that environmental and social issueswill sooner or later become a competitive issue. Theenvironmental performance of a product includes all life cyclephases, from raw material extraction, manufacturing and use, toend-of life treatment. Analytical methods like Life CycleAssessment (LCA) have been developed to enable comprehensivechain analysis. But these methods are time consuming and Designfor Environment (DFE) is only one of many issues that have tobe considered in product development. Simple DFE methods weredeveloped but they are often very generic and not veryreliable. Therefore, there is a need for customised easyto- useand sufficiently accurate methods and tools for supportingenvironmental decisionmaking in early product development.

In this licentiate thesis a procedural method is presented,for developing simple environmental indicators that are validfor certain product groups and can be used in conceptualdesign. It is a learning-based approach and it is suitable forlarger companies. The development of these indicators is basedon the results of Life Cycle Assessments. The validity range ofthose indicators should be verified after every design changeby use of LCA. A new method called Life Cycle Design StructureMatrix (LC-DSM) based on the Design Structure Matrix modellingtechnique is also presented. The aim is to speed up LCA bybringing it closer to product developers and designers. Byusing this LCDSM method, product development teams can createan environmental balance sheet of their product or componentwith changing level of detail during the development process.Environmental hotspots analysis could be done easily.

In the framework of“action research”a softwareprototype has been developed as IT support tool for the LC-DSM,supporting the automatic generation of such a matrix (in MSExcel® format) based on Product Data Management data.

Keywords:Design for Environment•Life CycleAssessment•Design Structure Matrix•ProductDevelopment Process

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Maskinkonstruktion , 2001. , xv, 116 p.
Trita-MMK, ISSN 1400-1179 ; 2001:02
Keyword [en]
Design for Environment, Life Cycle Assessment, Design Structure Matrix, Product Development Process
URN: urn:nbn:se:kth:diva-1298OAI: diva2:7117
NR 20140805Available from: 2001-10-23 Created: 2001-10-23Bibliographically approved

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