liu.seSearch for publications in DiVA
Change search
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • oxford
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf
Lean Remanufacturing: Reducing Process Lead Time
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Manufacturing Engineering. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Remanufacturing is a product recovery option in which used products are brought back into useful life. While the remanufacturing industry stretches from heavy machinery to automotive parts, furniture, and IT sectors, it faces challenges. A majority of these challenges originate from the remanufacturing characteristics of having little control over the core (the used product or its part), high product variation, low product volumes, and a high proportion of manual work, when compared to manufacturing. Some remanufacturing challenges appear to be process challenges that prolong process lead time, making remanufacturing process inefficient.

Lean is an improvement strategy with roots in the manufacturing industry. Lean helps to increase customer satisfaction, reduce costs, and improve company’s performance in delivery, quality, inventory, morale, safety, and other areas. Lean encompasses principles, tools and practices to deal with e.g. inefficient processes and long process lead times. Therefore, in this thesis lean has been selected as an improvement strategy to deal with long remanufacturing process lead times.

The objective of this thesis is to expand knowledge on how lean can reduce remanufacturing process lead time. This objective is approached through literature studies and a case study conducted at four remanufacturing companies. There are five challenges that contribute to long process lead time: unpredictable core quality, quantity, and timing; weak collaboration, information exchange, and miscommunication; high inventory levels; unknown number of required operations in process and process sequence; and insufficient employee skills for process and product upgrade. When analysing the case companies’ process lead times it was found that there is a need to reduce waiting times, which account for 95 to 99 per cent of process lead times at three of the four companies.

To improve remanufacturing process efficiency and reduce remanufacturing process lead time six lean practices are suggested: product families; kanban; layout for continuous flow; cross functional teams; standard operating procedures; and supplier partnerships. The suggested lean practices have a key focus on reducing waiting time since it prolongs the process lead time. This thesis contributes to lean remanufacturing research with the case study findings on lean practices to reduce remanufacturing process lead time and increase process efficiency.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2018. , p. 70
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Dissertations, ISSN 0345-7524 ; 1938
Keywords [en]
Circular Economy, Lean Production, Toyota Production System, Value Stream Mapping, Remanufacturing Process Challenges and Improvements, Process Efficiency
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics Reliability and Maintenance
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-147875DOI: 10.3384/diss.diva-147875ISBN: 9789176853030 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-147875DiVA, id: diva2:1206644
Public defence
2018-06-14, ACAS, A building, Campus Valla, Linköping, 09:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2018-05-17 Created: 2018-05-17 Last updated: 2018-05-22Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Challenges and Opportunities of Lean Remanufacturing
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Challenges and Opportunities of Lean Remanufacturing
2014 (English)In: International Journal of Automation Technology, ISSN 1881-7629, E-ISSN 1883-8022, Vol. 8, no 5, p. 644-652Article, review/survey (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Lean philosophy, which promotes business excellence through continuous improvement, originates from the Japanese car manufacturer, Toyota’s Production System (TPS). An area where lean has not been fully explored is remanufacturing, a process that brings used products back to useful life. Remanufacturing is often a more complex process than manufacturing due to the uncertainty of process steps/time and part quality/quantity. This study explored remanufacturing by identifying its challenges and opportunities in becoming lean. The challenges of a lean remanufacturing system do not exceed its advantages. Although some researchers state that it is difficult or even impossible to apply lean principles to remanufacturing, this research utilizes lean as a continuous improvement philosophy that focuses on improving the remanufactured products’ quality, process lead times, and inventory levels. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Fuji Technology Press, 2014
Keywords
lean, remanufacturing, product life cycle, continuous improvement
National Category
Other Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-120764 (URN)
Projects
ÅterProdukt, KEAP
Funder
VINNOVA
Available from: 2015-08-24 Created: 2015-08-24 Last updated: 2018-05-17Bibliographically approved
2. Minimum Time for Material and Information Flows Analysis at a Forklift Truck Remanufacturer
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Minimum Time for Material and Information Flows Analysis at a Forklift Truck Remanufacturer
2014 (English)In: Proceedings of Sixth Swedish Production Symposium (SPS14), 2014Conference paper, Published paper (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Material and information flows are often complex at remanufacturing companies. Minimum time for Material and Information Flows Analysis (MiniMifa) is a data collection workshop in which material and information flows’ challenges and improvement opportunities are investigated. By carrying the idea of Value Stream Mapping (VSM), MiniMifa turns to an act of cartography of industrial processes. After the workshop, companies have a holistic view of their processes, the current “pains” - challenges, and possible “painkillers” – improvement ideas, including lean-inspired solutions.

This paper demonstrates a pilot MiniMifa at a forklift truck remanufacturer where a potential improvement in e.g. lead time reduction by 93% was discovered.

Keywords
Remanufacturing, Lean, Material and Information Flows, Data collection workshop, Process map
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-118270 (URN)
Conference
Sixth Swedish Production Symposium (SPS14), September 16-18, 2014, Gothenburg, Sweden
Available from: 2015-05-25 Created: 2015-05-25 Last updated: 2018-05-17Bibliographically approved
3. Toward Pull Remanufacturing: A Case Study on Material and Information Flow Uncertainties at a German Engine Remanufacturer
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Toward Pull Remanufacturing: A Case Study on Material and Information Flow Uncertainties at a German Engine Remanufacturer
2015 (English)In: Procedia CIRP, ISSN 2212-8271, E-ISSN 2212-8271, Vol. 26, p. 270-275Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Abstract Together with reuse and material recycling, remanufacturing has emerged as a sustainable approach for used products. Remanufacturing is more complex than manufacturing, due to the uncertainties in material and information flows inside the remanufacturing facility and along the product life-cycle. Therefore, some remanufacturers intend to use lean production principles and philosophies to deal with this complexity and to improve their operations. The aim of this paper is to identify reasons for possible material and information flow uncertainties and develop lean-inspired solution at a German engine remanufacturer. The empirical data were collected via a Material and Information Flow Analysis workshop. The reasons for missing, late, defective and non-available spare parts as well as disrupted, uneven, chaotic and inaccessible information flows are identified. Finally, a lean pull Kanban reordering system is suggested and recognized to be a proper solution to remanufacturing complexity.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2015
Keywords
Remanufacturing, Product life-cycle, Lean, Pull, Kanban
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-118272 (URN)10.1016/j.procir.2014.07.187 (DOI)000360931800048 ()
Conference
12th Global Conference on Sustainable Manufacturing - Emerging Potentials, Johor Bahru, Malaysia, 22–24 September 2014
Available from: 2015-05-25 Created: 2015-05-25 Last updated: 2018-05-17Bibliographically approved
4. Remanufacturing lead time reduction through a Just-in-time Lean strategy: a case study on Laptops
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Remanufacturing lead time reduction through a Just-in-time Lean strategy: a case study on Laptops
2017 (English)In: Proceedings of 3rd International Conference onRemanufacturing (ICOR17), 2017Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The annual accumulation of electronic equipment waste, including IT, in the European Union reached at least nine million tons in 2015. These products usually have a limited lifespan, and many consumers tend to buy new devices before their old ones stop working.

Remanufacturing is one of the effective ways to contribute to IT waste reduction. Product life extension through remanufacturing gives the product one or several more users throughout its life cycle. When remanufacturing is applied to laptops, the extraction of virgin materials, the energy consumption for manufacturing and the amount of waste are all reduced. However, today many remanufacturers of IT face challenges associated with inefficient and complex processes due to uncertainties in core timing, volume and quality. Lean remanufacturing is typically treated as an operations improvement strategy that deals with the process challenges. Just-in-time is one of the lean strategies to address inefficient, long and stochastic operations. Therefore, the aim of this paper is to investigate how just-in-time can help to reduce remanufacturing process lead time, and consequently increase process efficiency.

The data was collected through a focus group interview and a simplified Value Stream Mapping lean method at an IT remanufacturing company. The company’s remanufacturing process is assessed regarding process lead time and efficiency. Based on the case company's process challenges, the following possible just-in-time solutions were developed for remanufacturers: cellular layout, distinct product family flows and Kanban reordering system.

Keywords
Recovering, Laptops, Lean, Just-in-time solutions, Process efficiency
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-142345 (URN)
Conference
3rd International Conference on Remanufacturing ICOR-17, Linköping, Sweden, October 24-26, 2017
Available from: 2017-10-27 Created: 2017-10-27 Last updated: 2018-05-17Bibliographically approved
5. Lean improvements in remanufacturing: solving information flow challenges
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Lean improvements in remanufacturing: solving information flow challenges
2017 (English)In: QMOD proceedings, 2017Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Purpose - One efficient way to prolong the functional life of used products is remanufacturing. Compared to manufacturing, remanufacturing is a complex industrial process due to among other things high product variability, low production volumes and uncertain quality of returned used products. Remanufacturers are dependent on product information from Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM), but that information is often not shared. Remanufacturers struggle to access or develop lacking product information and need a strategy to address information flow challenges. Lean could be a suitable strategy to improve the information flow. Therefore, the purpose of the paper is to identify and suggest Lean improvements to address remanufacturer’s information flow challenges.

Methodology/Approach - Based on a case study of a filling machine remanufacturer, this paper discusses the information flow challenges and Lean-based solutions. The data was collected through a three-hour focus group interview combined with a Value Stream Mapping (VSM) method with the participation of seven company employees representing sales, logistics, quality, maintenance and production departments.

Findings - Two key information flow challenges were identified at the company: a lack of available product data and miscommunication with the OEM, and poor internal information sharing. The analysis of the identified challenges and improvement ideas created a platform for developing Lean-based solutions:1) developing standard operations through instruction checklists and kitting areas;2) boosting supplier and customer relations through six best partnering practices; and3) developing people and teams through teamwork and training.

Originality/Value of paper – All industries have their own specific challenges and development needs. This paper focuses on information flow challenges in remanufacturing. Original product information is often not shared, even when the remanufacturer has a contract with the OEM. Only few remanufacturers work with Lean today, but Lean could be a strategy to address the information flow challenges. This paper contributes to the knowledge on how Lean could be applied in the remanufacturing context.

Keywords
Lean remanufacturing, Information flow, Challenges, Improvements
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-142344 (URN)
Conference
20th QMOD conference, Copenhagen/Elsinore, Denmark and Helsingborg, Sweden, 5-7 August, 2017
Available from: 2017-10-27 Created: 2017-10-27 Last updated: 2018-05-17Bibliographically approved
6. Towards facilitating circular product life-cycle information flow via remanufacturing
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Towards facilitating circular product life-cycle information flow via remanufacturing
2015 (English)In: Procedia CIRP, ISSN 2212-8271, E-ISSN 2212-8271, Vol. 29, p. 780-785Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In order to achieve a sustainable development, circular economy approaches and circular material flows are explored in industry. However, circular information flows remain essentially unestablished. The aim of this paper is to: 1) explore categories and types of product life-cycle information available for remanufacturing; 2) identify constraints for efficient product life-cycle information flow via remanufacturing; and 3) propose initiatives to facilitate product life-cycle information flow via remanufacturing.

Data was collected through workshops and interviews at five remanufacturing companies. An accumulated Sankey diagram illustrates product life-cycle information flow, losses and bottleneck. Based on the analysis, possible initiatives to facilitate efficient product life-cycle information flow via remanufacturing are presented.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier, 2015
Keywords
Remanufacturing; Product life-cycle stackeholder; Feedback; Feed forward; Sankey diagram
National Category
Other Civil Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-120761 (URN)10.1016/j.procir.2015.02.162 (DOI)000356146100132 ()
Conference
22nd CIRP Conference on Life Cycle Engineering (LCE), Univ New S Wales, Sydney, AUSTRALIA, April 7-9, 2015
Projects
Återprodukt, KEAP2
Funder
VINNOVA
Available from: 2015-08-24 Created: 2015-08-24 Last updated: 2018-05-17Bibliographically approved
7. Remanufacturing challenges and possible lean improvements
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Remanufacturing challenges and possible lean improvements
2018 (English)In: Journal of Cleaner Production, ISSN 0959-6526, E-ISSN 1879-1786, Vol. 172, p. 3225-3236Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Remanufacturing is a viable way to prolong the useful life of an end-of-use product or its parts. Despite its economic, environmental, and social benefits, remanufacturing is associated with many challenges related to core (used product or its part) availability, timing and quality. The aim of this paper is to study how lean production could be used to tackle remanufacturing process challenges and contribute to shorter lead times. To meet this aim, we conducted a literature review and case studies of four remanufacturing companies. The case companies remanufacturing challenges were: (1) a lack of material requirements planning system, (2) poor core information, (3) a lack of core material, (4) poor spare parts information, (5) a lack of spare parts material, (6) insufficient quality management practices, (7) large inventories, (8) stochastic remanufacturing processes, (9) a lack of supply-demand balance, and (10) insufficient automation. These challenges contribute to long and variable remanufacturing process lead times. To tackle remanufacturing challenges, seven lean-based improvements with a major effect on improvements in lead time were suggested: standard operations, continuous flow, Kanban, teamwork, employee cross-training, layout for continuous flow, and supplier partnership. Providing that the suggested improvements are implemented, a possible lead time reduction of 83-99 per cent was projected. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
ELSEVIER SCI LTD, 2018
Keywords
Remanufacturing; Circular economy; Lean production; Lead time
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-144880 (URN)10.1016/j.jclepro.2017.11.023 (DOI)000423002500020 ()
Note

Funding Agencies|Swedish Governmental Agency for Innovation Systems [2013-03333]

Available from: 2018-02-09 Created: 2018-02-09 Last updated: 2018-05-17

Open Access in DiVA

Lean Remanufacturing: Reducing Process Lead Time(2574 kB)42 downloads
File information
File name FULLTEXT01.pdfFile size 2574 kBChecksum SHA-512
58581e9740b4fcad24f07f110d0dd35657600e1d9917c51556f9d2062c62ab8bd07d25029f050d14d7b4797d9073530864a4756b464dae3434f6d33eaf739ca4
Type fulltextMimetype application/pdf
omslag(2833 kB)7 downloads
File information
File name COVER01.pdfFile size 2833 kBChecksum SHA-512
57e3bcb7c5f09898f9b60a5555a95aef0f554187056967cdc7da9a1350ad4f85434ddb814067360242f6978e393d3fa6dc869da0f41dcf7d6dd91e40d81fac15
Type coverMimetype application/pdf

Other links

Publisher's full text

Authority records BETA

Kurilova-Palisaitiene, Jelena

Search in DiVA

By author/editor
Kurilova-Palisaitiene, Jelena
By organisation
Manufacturing EngineeringFaculty of Science & Engineering
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and ErgonomicsReliability and Maintenance

Search outside of DiVA

GoogleGoogle Scholar
Total: 42 downloads
The number of downloads is the sum of all downloads of full texts. It may include eg previous versions that are now no longer available

doi
isbn
urn-nbn

Altmetric score

doi
isbn
urn-nbn
Total: 373 hits
CiteExportLink to record
Permanent link

Direct link
Cite
Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
  • vancouver
  • oxford
  • Other style
More styles
Language
  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
More languages
Output format
  • html
  • text
  • asciidoc
  • rtf