Sustainable manufacturing facilitates the development of products with lower environmental impact. Additive manufacturing (AM) processes are incorporated with sustainable characteristics such as minimum material consumption, energy efficiency and minimum transportation. The purpose of this paper is to report a study on sustainability evaluation of AM process using a grey-based approach.Design/methodology/approachSustainable AM process is gaining importance. From this viewpoint, this paper presents the evaluation of sustainability of AM process. The evaluation model includes 3 enablers, 18 criteria and 54 attributes. Grey-based approach is used for sustainability evaluation. Expert inputs are used for computing the grey index. Expert inputs are obtained and they are aggregated at three levels to calculate the overall grey performance index, which indicates sustainability level of AM processes. Furthermore, weaker areas are identified through determination of grey performance importance index (GPII) values.FindingsThe calculated grey index is (3.510, 16.177), which implies that AM process is sustainable. Weaker attributes are determined on the basis of the computation of GPII values.Practical implicationsThe study has been executed on the basis of the opinion from experts with practical experience. Hence, the inferences are found to be practically feasible. The identified weaker attributes from the study would enable the manufacturers and practitioners to focus more on weaker areas for enhancing the sustainability of AM processes. The study has made an evaluation from sustainability perspective of AM processes, which would enable practitioners to assess AM processes from TBL sustainability orientation.Originality/valueThe development of sustainability evaluation model and application of a grey-based approach for assessment of AM process are the original contributions of this study.
Grey Systems: Theory and Application – Emerald Publishing
Published: Oct 16, 2020
Keywords: Practical applications of grey models; Grey numbers and its operations