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Improving Design for Remanufacturing Though Feedback from Remanufacturing to Design
Linköping University, Department of Management and Engineering, Manufacturing Engineering. Linköping University, Faculty of Science & Engineering.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6326-4175
2020 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The high demand for products in our society makes manufacturing, and the treatment of products throughout the product life cycle, crucial as it adds to the total environmental impact of a product. Initiatives such as the circular economy promote economic growth while not increasing environmental impacts. The circular economy can also be viewed as a system where the use, maintenance, reuse, remanufacturing, and recycling of materials are optimised to capture the embedded value of products. This doctoral thesis focuses on remanufacturing in particular as an environmentally preferred way to treat products that have reached their end of use. Remanufacturing is an industrial process whereby a used product is restored to its next full life cycle, and thus energy and materials can be saved compared to new production.

A product that is intended for remanufacturing ought to have certain qualities such as ease of cleaning, ease of separation, and ease of reassembly in order to achieve efficient product remanufacturing. By applying design for remanufacturing (DfRem), costs can be saved as the remanufacturing operation time is reduced. Further, integrating DfRem in the design process is essential in order to achieve a more efficient and effective remanufacturing process. However, the current status in industry is that DfRem is not widely applied, and thus, products are not designed to facilitate remanufacturing. Since DfRem requires knowledge about remanufacturing, feedback from remanufacturing to design is needed for making the correct design considerations. The aim of this doctoral thesis is to expand current knowledge on feedback from remanufacturing to design and how it can be used to improve DfRem.

Hence, in order to meet the aim of this thesis, both literature studies and multiple case studies were conducted. The case studies include three companies that design, manufacture, and remanufacture their products. The data collection within the case studies was predominantly conducted through semistructured interviews. The results from the case studies have been further explored in a cross-case analysis.

The literature studies show the potential feedback from remanufacturing to design can be divided into three main categories: from the remanufacturing personnel, related to the process of remanufacturing, or related to the core to be remanufactured. Further, potential feedback at the case companies was found. However, currently, the potential feedback remains unsought for at the case companies. Indeed, there are barriers for feedback from remanufacturing to design, such as lack of knowledge, lack of incentives, and organisational barriers. However, there are also enablers, such as business opportunities to be gained, increased customer willingness, and laws, regulations, and standards encouraging more sustainable products.

In this doctoral thesis, a framework for improving implementation of DfRem is presented, as the use of DfRem and feedback from remanufacturing to design was found to be scarce in the case companies. The developed Remanufacturing Information Feedback Framework (RIFF) focuses on breaching the barriers for feedback from remanufacturing to design. Further, the application of the RIFF promotes the implementation of DfRem methods and tools, which, when applied, could make remanufacturing more efficient and effective. Consequently, the increased application of DfRem will contribute to the overall growth of the remanufacturing market, which will also reduce the negative environmental impact and promote, in turn a more circular economy.

Abstract [sv]

Den höga efterfrågan på produkter i vårt samhälle innebär att tillverkning av produkter och hur de behandlas under hela deras livscykel är betydande för miljöpåverkan. Detta eftersom allt ifrån tillverkning till hur en produkt tas om hand när den är förbrukad, bidrar till produktens totala miljöpåverkan. Initiativ såsom införandet av cirkulär ekonomi är tänkt att främja ekonomisk tillväxt utan att påverka miljön negativt. Cirkulär ekonomi kan också ses som ett system där användning, underhåll, återanvändning, återtillverkning och återvinning av produkter och material optimeras för att tillvarata och göra det mesta av den energi och det material som använts för att tillverka produkten. Denna doktorsavhandling fokuserar på återtillverkning, såsom ett hållbart sätt att behandla produkter som inte längre används. Återtillverkning är en industriell process där en begagnad produkt återställs till nyskick och på så sätt sparas energi och material, jämfört med nytillverkning.

En produkt som är avsedd för återtillverkning bör ha vissa egenskaper såsom att vara enkel att rengöra, enkel att demontera och enkel att montera. Genom att tillämpa konstruktion för återtillverkning (eng. design for remanufacturing (DfRem)) kan kostnader inom återtillverkning sparas eftersom tidsåtgången reduceras. Integrering av DfRem i produktutvecklingsprocessen är därför viktigt för att uppnå en effektivare återtillverkningsprocess. I nuläget används dock inte DfRem i någon större utsträckning inom industrin. DfRem kräver kunskap om återtillverkning, både i allmänhet, och om den specifika återtillverkningsprocessen för den aktuella produkten i synnerhet. Därför behövs feedback från återtillverkning till produktutveckling för att konstruktörer ska kunna göra korrekta konstruktionsöverväganden. Syftet med denna doktorsavhandling är att utöka aktuell kunskap om feedback från återtillverkning till produktutveckling och hur den kan användas för att förbättra DfRem.

För att uppnå syftet genomfördes både litteraturstudier och flera fallstudier. Fallstudierna inkluderar tre företag som konstruerar, tillverkar och återtillverkar sina produkter. Datainsamlingen genomfördes främst genom semistrukturerade intervjuer. Resultaten från de tre fallstudierna har även undersökts i en syntes från de olika fallstudierna.

Litteraturstudierna visade att den potentiella feedbacken från återtillverkning till produktutveckling kan delas in i tre huvudkategorier; från återtillverkningspersonalen, relaterad till processen för återtillverkning eller relaterad till komponenten som ska återtillverkas. Vidare hittades potentiell feedback hos fallföretagen. För närvarande förblir emellertid den potentiella feedbacken outnyttjad vid de fallföretag som presenteras i denna avhandling. Fallstudierna visade att det finns hinder för feedback från återtillverkning till produktutveckling; såsom brist på kunskap, brist på incitament och organisatoriska hinder. Det finns emellertid också möjliggörare såsom; potentiella affärsmöjligheter, ökad kundvilja, och lagar, regler och standarder som uppmuntrar till mer hållbara produkter.

I denna doktorsavhandling presenteras ett ramverk för att förbättra implementering av DfRem, eftersom användningen av DfRem och feedback från återtillverkning till produktutveckling är bristfällig i de fall som studerats. Ramverket (eng. the Remanufacturing Information Feedback Framework (RIFF)) fokuserar på att överbrygga hinder för feedback från återtillverkning till produktutveckling. Vidare främjar tillämpningen av RIFF implementeringen av DfRem-metoder och -verktyg, som, när de tillämpas, skulle kunna göra återtillverkning mer effektiv. Följaktligen kan ökad tillämpning av DfRem att bidra till den totala tillväxten av återtillverkningsmarknaden, vilket skulle innebära minskad negativ miljöpåverkan och även gynna en mer cirkulär ekonomi

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2020. , p. 92
Series
Linköping Studies in Science and Technology. Dissertations, ISSN 0345-7524 ; 2034
Keywords [en]
Circular Economy, Remanufacturing, Design for remanufacturing, Feedback
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-164111DOI: 10.3384/diss.diva-164111ISBN: 9789179299521 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-164111DiVA, id: diva2:1412251
Public defence
2020-03-20, C3, C Building, Campus Valla, Linköping, 09:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2020-03-05 Created: 2020-03-05 Last updated: 2020-03-05Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Life-Cycle Information Feedback to Product Design
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Life-Cycle Information Feedback to Product Design
2012 (English)In: Proceedings of the 5th Swedish Production symposium (SPS'12), The Swedish Production Academy , 2012, p. 99-105Conference paper, Oral presentation only (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

A key to sustainable product development is to consider the entire product life-cycle, as well as the requirements on product design in the different life-cycle phases. Improvements in product design can be based on information feedback from the product life-cycle. The aim of this paper is to identify sources of information from the product life-cycle for product design, as well as what benefits the retrieval of such information feedback can have for the product development process. The method udes for this paper was a literature review, utilizing the Scopus and Science Direct databases. Feedback information on the design phase can stream from the product life-cycle phases of manufacturing, use, service and edn-of-life. The feedback includes objective and subjective data from customers, users, service technicians and company staff involved in the product life-cycle. The feedback from the product life-cycle needs to be managed well, and relevant information should be available to the product development team in the design phase. Sucg information flows are valuable in supporting the design of products to facilitate the entire product life-cycle.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
The Swedish Production Academy, 2012
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-87524 (URN)978-91-7519-752-4 (ISBN)
Conference
5th International Swedish Production Symposium (SPS 2012), 6-8 November 2012, Linköping, Sweden
Available from: 2013-01-18 Created: 2013-01-18 Last updated: 2020-03-05Bibliographically approved
2. 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: 2020-03-05Bibliographically approved
3. Assessing barriers for available life-cycle information feedback transfer to product design
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Assessing barriers for available life-cycle information feedback transfer to product design
2015 (English)In: ICoR- 2nd International Conference on Remanufacturing, 2015Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The design of products greatly influences the performance of the product in the rest of the product’s life-cycle phases, e.g. manufacturing, use/maintenance and end-of-life processes. In order to design more sustainable products, information from all life-cycle phases should be implemented in structured ways via e.g. eco-design tools in the design process. Remanufacturing is one viable end-of-life strategy that is environmentally beneficial as it will preserve most of the material and energy put into the initial product and/or its components. Although the product design determines a large portion of the remanufacturability of a product, few companies apply design for remanufacturing on their products.The aim of this paper is to show what type of feedback is available at remanufacturers, and to explore the barriers that prevent that feedback from reaching product development. Using the case study methodology, data have been collected through semi-structured interviews with four remanufacturing companies focusing on the information exchange between the departments of remanufacturing and product development.The case study results show that there is feedback from the remanufacturers concerning a wide variety of design aspects. Furthermore, the remanufacturers have feedback about information they lack from design and the use phase including service. At present, however, there is no feedback provided from remanufacturing to design in the cases studied. Thus, the barriers for providing available life-cycle information feedback are assessed. There are both internal and external barriers. Between design and remanufacturing the barriers include e.g. lack of knowledge and organisational aspects. Further influencing the lack of feedback are managerial aspects such as the business case and specifications lacking remanufacturing aspects and thus not supporting design for remanufacturing. However, design changes such as different joining methods, a higher degree of standardization and different material selections could be very beneficial for remanufacturing and thus the environment.

Keywords
Remanufacturing, design for remanufacturing, life-cycle information feedback, feedback barriers, case studies
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-126999 (URN)
Conference
ICoR- 2nd International Conference on Remanufacturing, Amsterdam, Netherlands, 14-16 June 2015
Projects
KEAP 2
Funder
VINNOVA, 1414323700
Available from: 2016-04-11 Created: 2016-04-11 Last updated: 2020-03-05Bibliographically approved
4. The role of Product-Service Systems regarding information feedback transfer in the product life-cycle including remanufacturing
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The role of Product-Service Systems regarding information feedback transfer in the product life-cycle including remanufacturing
2016 (English)In: PRODUCT-SERVICE SYSTEMS ACROSS LIFE CYCLE, ELSEVIER SCIENCE BV , 2016, Vol. 47, p. 311-316Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

With a Product-Service System (PSS), the producer often has control of its products during multiple life-cycles, and thus there are more incentives for design for service and remanufacturing in comparison to traditional sales. The aim of this paper is to explore the role of PSS regarding information feedback transfer in the product life-cycle including remanufacturing. The paper explores two industrial cases where PSS does not yet act as a facilitator for transferring information feedback from remanufacturing to product designers. However, the full potential of PSS is not yet utilized at the companies, and their products are neither designed for PSS nor remanufacturing. (C) 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
ELSEVIER SCIENCE BV, 2016
Series
Procedia CIRP, ISSN 2212-8271
Keywords
Product life-cycle information; PSS; Remanufacturing
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-133141 (URN)10.1016/j.procir.2016.03.088 (DOI)000387505100053 ()
Conference
Conference on Product-Service Systems across Life Cycle
Available from: 2016-12-12 Created: 2016-12-09 Last updated: 2020-03-05
5. Feedback from Remanufacturing: Its Unexploited Potential to Improve Future Product Design
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Feedback from Remanufacturing: Its Unexploited Potential to Improve Future Product Design
2019 (English)In: Sustainability, ISSN 2071-1050, E-ISSN 2071-1050, Vol. 11, no 15, p. 1article id 4037Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Company interest and research in the circular economy and remanufacturing have increased as a means of reducing negative environmental impacts. Remanufacturing is an industrial process whereby used products are returned to a state of like-new. However, few products are designed for remanufacturing, and further research and industrial efforts are needed to facilitate more widespread use of design for remanufacturing. One crucial factor facilitating design for remanufacturing is the integration of feedback in the product design process. Thus, the objective of this paper is to analyse feedback flows from remanufacturing to product design. Hence, a literature study and multiple case studies were conducted at three companies that design, manufacture and remanufacture different kinds of products. The cross-case analysis revealed the five barriers of the lack of internal awareness, lack of knowledge, lack of incentives, lack of feedback channels and non-supportive organisational structures, and the five enablers of business opportunities, integrated design processes, customers’ demand, laws, regulations and standards, and new technologies. To establish improved feedback from remanufacturing to product design, the barriers need to be addressed and the enablers explored. Thus, improved feedback from remanufacturing to product design will improve the design of future products suited for a more circular economy.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
MDPI, 2019. p. 1
Keywords
feedback; remanufacturing; case studies; design for remanufacturing; circular economy; reduction in negative environmental impacts
National Category
Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-160140 (URN)10.3390/su11154037 (DOI)000485230200042 ()2-s2.0-85070450645 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2019-09-09 Created: 2019-09-09 Last updated: 2020-03-05Bibliographically approved
6. Supporting design for remanufacturing: A framework for implementing information feedback from remanufacturing to product design
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Supporting design for remanufacturing: A framework for implementing information feedback from remanufacturing to product design
2019 (English)In: Journal of Remanufacturing, ISSN 2210-464X, p. 1-20Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Remanufacturing is an industrial process turning used products into a condition of like new or better. Remanufacturing is also one strategy that salvages the value put into products during manufacturing and thus reduces the environmental impact of products over the life-cycle. However, not many products are designed for remanufacturing, and there is rarely any feedback from remanufacturing to design. Since design for remanufacturing is not applied at most manufacturing companies, there is a need to support companies, for example, by information feedback methods. By implementing feedback transfer from remanufacturing to design and employing design for remanufacturing, the remanufacturing process is more likely to be effective and efficient. The aim of this paper is to present a framework that supports design for remanufacturing by the implementation of structured feedback from remanufacturing to design. The framework aims at strategically outlining and practically implementing information feedback from remanufacturing to design. A case company where the framework has been initialised is also presented.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Springer, 2019
National Category
Other Engineering and Technologies not elsewhere specified
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-160139 (URN)10.1007/s13243-019-00074-7 (DOI)
Available from: 2019-09-09 Created: 2019-09-09 Last updated: 2020-03-05Bibliographically approved

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