Analyzing the Environmental Consequences of Production Processes from a System of Systems Perspective: A Case of Gear Manufacturing in the Automotive Industry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Many research studies have been done to investigate different aspects of environmental challenges. In the product development context, there have been attempts to reduce the environmental impacts of associated activities including the production processes themselves. As a result, various technological improvements have been made and new production processes e.g. powder metallurgy technologies have been introduced that may demonstrate a lower environmental footprint compared to conventional processes e.g. cutting machining technologies. However, a production process with a lower environmental impact may lead to reducing the quality/performance attributes of the produced parts (gear) and probably of final products (transmission box). Therefore, the efforts intended to produce more sustainable products by using production processes with less environmental footprints may lead to some unintended consequences such as increased maintenance requirements and/or demand. This is a rebound effect from a system of systems (SoS) perspective. This paper aims to analyze the impacts of more environmentally friendly production processes on the total environmental impact associated with a product given they may have a negative impact on a part/product's quality and performance or usage. This paper introduces a methodological approach to analyze the environmental sustainability of a production process at a SoS level. This is done by including the entire supply chain of a product-system and its interacting systems by using the results of the attributional/consequential life cycle assessment (LCA) method. The approach validity approach is demonstrated in the case of gear manufacturing in the automotive industry.

Details

Authors
Organisations
External organisations
  • University of New South Wales
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Production Engineering, Human Work Science and Ergonomics

Keywords

  • Environmental impact, Quality, Rebound effect, Sustainability, System of Systems
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)376-381
Number of pages6
JournalProcedia CIRP
Volume98
Publication statusPublished - 2021 Mar 10
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes
Event28th CIRP Conference on Life Cycle Engineering, LCE 2021 - Jaipur, India
Duration: 2021 Mar 102021 Mar 12