With the growing general awareness of the need of environmental protection, some ecodesign strategies are formulated to provide general design directions so as to develop green products. While the strategies such as selection of eco-materials, reduction of packaging sizes, optimization of energy use, or elimination of the use of toxic materials have been adopted, currently, decision-makers might have to evaluate their designs using some qualitative ecodesign techniques, but there is not much they can do to further enhance their designs’ environmental performances. Life cycle assessment (LCA) is one of the generally accepted approaches to quantitatively assess product-oriented environmental impact. The results of LCA, to some extent, may help designers to understand the potential environmental impact generated by their design options. However, there is very limited information that can be given to show how to redesign their products to further reduce the environmental impact. In this connection, we propose an approach to search for the best assembly sequence in order to lower the overall environmental impact. A simplified LCA is used to quantify the environmental impacts of design options. ACO algorithm is then applied to identify a better assembly sequence with the lowest environmental impact value. A case study is provided to demonstrate the applicability of the proposed approach.
The International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 7, 2017
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