1998 Progress Report: Environmentally Conscious Manufacturing: Design for Disassembly (DFD) in De-Manufacturing of Products

EPA Grant Number: R825370C067
Subproject: this is subproject number 067 , established and managed by the Center Director under grant R825370
(EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).

Center: EERC - National Center for Clean Industrial and Treatment Technologies (CenCITT)
Center Director: Crittenden, John C.
Title: Environmentally Conscious Manufacturing: Design for Disassembly (DFD) in De-Manufacturing of Products
Investigators: Gadh, Rajit
Institution: University of Wisconsin - Madison
EPA Project Officer: Klieforth, Barbara I
Project Period: January 1, 1997 through January 1, 1999
Project Period Covered by this Report: January 1, 1997 through January 1, 1998
RFA: Exploratory Environmental Research Centers (1992) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Center for Clean Industrial and Treatment Technologies (CenCITT) , Targeted Research


The goal of this research is to provide methodologies and computer-aided software design tools for economical disassembly of mechanical and electromechanical products that allows recyclable materials to be removed efficiently, thereby resulting in pollution prevention and waste minimization.

Progress Summary:

Disassembly involves taking apart an assembly into a larger number of individual components and subsequently grouping the components by their material so as to make the material recycling relatively straightforward. Therefore, disassembly for recycling analysis is important from the standpoint of:

    1) achieving maximum material benefit at the end of the life of a product,
    2) efficient and economical separation of components for material recycling, and
    3) pollution prevention by reducing the burden placed on the environment from the ever-increasing number of obsolete products.

The project focuses on development of software tools for evaluating designs of products for environmentally conscious manufacturing (design for disassembly, recycling/reuse and disposal) at the product design stage itself. The methodology involves 1) disassembling the assembly into its individual components (requiring disassembly analysis), and 2) recycling the individual materials that constitute each component (requiring component material recycling assessment). While the UWMadison effort focuses on design tools development, this research is being coordinated with the process analysis development project at MTU.

Disassembly for environment research performed and resulting software tool developed: A prototypical software tool was developed for efficient disassembly of mechanical and electro-mechanical products that allows recyclable materials to be removed efficiently. This software tool has been developed partially on the Unix platform (the portion that ties to the CAD system) and partially on the PC (the software that ties to the environmental cost). The Design for Disassembly (DFD) tool consists of two components:

1) Disassembly Sequence Evaluation: determines the minimum cost disassembly sequence. This incorporates currently non-destructive disassembly. The destructive disassembly software has been developed, but not yet fully integrated into the nondestructive software.

2) Recycling Assessment: determining disassembly/recycling/disposal costs, profit in product recycling, and components to be disassembled for product recycling and disposal. This software program generates the cost graphs for recycling, disposal and disassembly.

Design tradeoffs: The software tool allows the designer to plot the environmental cost graphs for several designs and then compare them to study the design tradeoffs between different designs. This software uses the disassembly sequence file generated in the first step.

Application of software to real-world product designs: The research methodology and the software developed has been applied to two classes of products:

    1) Electro-mechanical assemblies - Cellular Phone and Printer assemblies, and
    2) Large mechanical assemblies - Dashboard subassembly, aircraft engine subassembly, conceptual aircraft assembly.

Collaboration with industry: We have had significant interaction and exchange with several automotive and aerospace companies. Currently, Prof. Gadh is involved in discussions with Ford and CMI (an automotive supplier) on using the software developed for specific applications within each company. Chrysler Corporation is visiting Prof. Gadh's research lab in October 1998 to discuss joint projects. A fourth automotive company that recently visited the research lab is Fiat of Italy, which has joint projects with American automotive suppliers and Fiat has requested a joint project plan from Professor Gadh.

Graduate student Ramon Figueroa spent the Summer of 1998 as an intern with Pratt and Whitney/United Technologies, West Palm Beach, Florida. There, he educated them about the disassembly software for environment developed and has completed an investigation jointly with Pratt and Whitney with respect to the usage of this program within their engineering Design and Manufacturing programs. The company uses Cognition's knowledge-based engine for cost analysis, which is currently being tied into the disassembly software program at UW-Madison by the graduate students, Ramon Figueroa, Hari Srinivasan and S. Sundar.

We also plan to develop a complete Product Data Management (PDM) System interface to store and access materials and recycling information in addition to product assembly design information. Automotive industry has overwhelmingly adopted PDM systems, and by integrating with their PDM systems, we believe that our software will become commercially viable and user-friendlier.

Journal Articles on this Report : 6 Displayed | Download in RIS Format

Other subproject views: All 27 publications 11 publications in selected types All 11 journal articles
Other center views: All 157 publications 45 publications in selected types All 36 journal articles
Type Citation Sub Project Document Sources
Journal Article Shyamsundar, N., H. Srinivasan, and R. Gadh, "Virtual De-manufacturing Via Virtual Disassembly to Design Environmentally Conscious Products." International Journal of Environmentally Conscious Design and Manufacturing, Vol. 1, No. 6, pp. 37-50, 1997. R825370C067 (1998)
not available
Journal Article Shyamsundar, N., A. Ashai, and R. Gadh, "Geometry Based Metric Formulation and Methodology to Support Virtual Design for Disassembly." Journal of Engineering Design and Automation, Vol. 4, No. 1, pp. 13-26, 1998. R825370C067 (1998)
not available
Journal Article Shyamsundar N, Gadh R. Geometric abstractions to support disassembly analysis. IIE Transactions 1999;31(10):935-946. R825370 (1999)
R825370C067 (1998)
R825370C067 (1999)
  • Full-text: ResearchGate - Abstract & Full Text PDF
  • Abstract: Springer-Abstract
  • Other: Taylor&Francis-Abstract
  • Journal Article Srinivasan H, Gadh R. A geometric algorithm for single selective disassembly using the wave propagation abstraction. Computer-Aided Design 1998;30(8):603-613 R825370C067 (1998)
    not available
    Journal Article Srinivasan, H. and R. Gadh, "Complexity Reduction in Geometric Selective Disassembly Using the Wave Propagation Abstraction." submitted to IEEE Transactions on Robotics and Automation, September, 1998. R825370C067 (1998)
    not available
    Journal Article Srinivasan H, Gadh R. Efficient geometric disassembly of multiple components from an assembly using wave propagation. Journal of Mechanical Design 2000;122(2):179-184. R825370 (1999)
    R825370C067 (1998)
    R825370C067 (1999)
  • Full-text: ResearchGate-Full Text PDF
  • Abstract: JMD-Citation
  • Other: UCLA-Full Text PDF
  • Supplemental Keywords:

    RFA, Scientific Discipline, INTERNATIONAL COOPERATION, Ecosystem Protection/Environmental Exposure & Risk, Sustainable Industry/Business, cleaner production/pollution prevention, computing technology, Economics and Business, pollution prevention, Environmental Engineering, in-process changes, life cycle analysis, in-process waste minimization, industrial design for environment, industrial process design, chemical process safety, occupational safety, cleaner production, environmentally conscious manufacturing, green design, demanufacturing, pollution prevention design tool, environmentally friendly technology, cash flow analysis, decision making, clean technology, physico-chemical properties, computer science, Clean Process Advisory System (CPAS), CPAS, industrial process, process modification, industry pollution prevention research, Monte Carlo simulator, information technology, innovative technology, life cycle assessment, product life cycle, design for disassembly, Design for Environment, industrial innovations, outreach and education, DfE, green technology, environmentally conscious design, decision support tool

    Progress and Final Reports:

    Original Abstract
  • 1997
  • Final

  • Main Center Abstract and Reports:

    R825370    EERC - National Center for Clean Industrial and Treatment Technologies (CenCITT)

    Subprojects under this Center: (EPA does not fund or establish subprojects; EPA awards and manages the overall grant for this center).
    R825370C032 Means for Producing an Entirely New Generation of Lignin-Based Plastics
    R825370C042 Environmentally Conscious Design for Construction
    R825370C046 Clean Process Advisory System (CPAS) Core Activities
    R825370C048 Investigation of the Partial Oxidation of Methane to Methanol in a Simulated Countercurrent Moving Bed Reactor
    R825370C054 Predictive Tool for Ultrafiltration Performance
    R825370C055 Heuristic Reactor Design for Clean Synthesis and Processing - Separative Reactors
    R825370C056 Characterization of Selective Solid Acid Catalysts Towards the Rational Design of Catalytic Reactions
    R825370C057 Environmentally Conscious Manufacturing: Prediction of Processing Waste Streams for Discrete Products
    R825370C064 The Physical Properties Management System (PPMS™): A P2 Engineering Aid to Support Process Design and Analysis
    R825370C065 Development and Testing of Pollution Prevention Design Aids for Process Analysis and Decision Making
    R825370C066 Design Tools for Chemical Process Safety: Accident Probability
    R825370C067 Environmentally Conscious Manufacturing: Design for Disassembly (DFD) in De-Manufacturing of Products
    R825370C068 An Economic Comparison of Wet and Dry Machining
    R825370C069 In-Line Copper Recovery Technology
    R825370C070 Selective Catalytic Hydrogenation of Lactic Acid
    R825370C071 Biosynthesis of Polyhydroxyalkanoate Polymers from Industrial Wastewater
    R825370C072 Tin Zeolites for Partial Oxidation Catalysis
    R825370C073 Development of a High Performance Photocatalytic Reactor System for the Production of Methanol from Methane in the Gas Phase
    R825370C074 Recovery of Waste Polymer Generated by Lost Foam Technology in the Metal Casting Industry
    R825370C075 Industrial Implementation of the P2 Framework
    R825370C076 Establishing Automated Linkages Between Existing P2-Related Software Design Tools
    R825370C077 Integrated Applications of the Clean Process Advisory System to P2-Conscious Process Analysis and Improvement
    R825370C078 Development of Environmental Indices for Green Chemical Production and Use