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A framework for the sustainability evaluation of product configuration design

Hassan, Mohd Fahrul (2014) A framework for the sustainability evaluation of product configuration design. PhD thesis, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia.


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Sustainable development has taken its place in product design as something that needs to be achieved nowadays, not only to generate profits, meet consumers' needs, and reduce adverse impacts on the environment, but in consideration of all economic, societal, and environmental aspects, known as the triple bottom line (TBL), over the entire product life cycle. Numerous approaches to sustainable product design have been introduced by integrating sustainability considerations during the preliminary design phase. However, most of them neglect either one of the TBL aspects, do not cover the entire product life cycle, and have difficulty in selecting the best design alternative. Additionally, none of them consider sustainability evaluation as one of the criteria in the configuration design phase. In this study, a framework for selecting the most sustainable alternative configuration designs of a part is proposed to assist product designers in decision-making. The proposed framework has been basically developed in two main phases, the first of which presents a new decision tool named the Product Sustainability Evaluation Tool (ProSET) to support the proposed framework, and the second phase encompasses the configuration design process. ProSET provides an indicator called the Weighted Sustainability Score (WSS) for each evaluated alternative configuration design of a part to allow for a quick response and time saving during decision-making process. The Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) and Artificial Neural Network (ANN) are applied in ProSET to provide weighting factors and estimate the WSS. Several case studies are conducted involving discrete products to comprehensively demonstrate the application of the proposed framework. Based on the results of sustainability performance evaluation by ProSET of an armchair, the alternative part with the highest WSS among its competitors for each basic element of the armchair has been selected to be a complete product. The results are also compared with commercial software to validate the accuracy of the analysis. From the comparison, it is surnmarised that both results show a degree of similarity in order to efficiently select the best alternative part configuration design with regard to environmental considerations. Hence, it is suggested that the proposed framework and the capability of ProSET can be easily adopted into the working environment of product designers.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Subjects: T Technology > TS Manufactures > TS155-194 Production management. Operations management
Depositing User: En. Sharul Ahmad
Date Deposited: 11 Apr 2016 09:06
Last Modified: 11 Apr 2016 09:06
URI: http://eprints.uthm.edu.my/id/eprint/7891
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