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Methodology to identify design for recycling measures for high-tech sectors

: Marwede, Max; Schischke, Karsten; Arranz, Pol; Hickey, Stewart; Fitzpatrick, Colin; Ospina, Jose; Yang, Mona; Nissen, Nils F.; Lang, Klaus-Dieter

Lang, Klaus-Dieter; Nissen, Nils F.; Middendorf, Andreas; Chancerel, Perrine ; Fraunhofer-Institut für Zuverlässigkeit und Mikrointegration -IZM-, Berlin:
Electronics Goes Green 2012+. Proceedings. CD-ROM : Joint International Conference and Exhibition; September 9 - 12, 2012, Berlin, Germany
Stuttgart: Fraunhofer Verlag, 2012
ISBN: 978-3-8396-0439-7 (CD-ROM)
ISBN: 3-8396-0439-7 (CD-ROM)
ISBN: 978-1-4673-4512-5 (Print)
Joint International Conference and Exhibition "Electronics Goes Green" <4, 2012, Berlin>
Conference Paper
Fraunhofer IZM ()

The European project "Towards Zero Waste in Industrial Networks (ZeroWIN)" examines and develops new and innovative approaches and effective strategies for the prevention of waste in industries based on industrial symbiosis. Adhering to zero waste principles products can be designed in accordance to D4R (Design for Recycling, Repair, Refurbishment and Reuse) criteria. D4R (or DfR) is a subordinate term and a specific aspect of the broader eco-design/design for the environment approach. Both take into consideration the product life cycle, but D4R follows the primary target to reduce impacts at end-of-life, which includes also a "first end-of-life" and to bring back a product into a second life cycle or to postpone the date of time, when a system, product or part thereof finally reaches end of life.
Considering D4R principles in product design can reduce environmental impacts not only at end-of-life, but also enhances recyclability of production waste in industrial networks and allows establishing service-oriented business models. Thus D4R measures can become an important enabler to make a "zero waste" vision in industrial networks possible.
This paper presents the methodology to find and identify relevant D4R measures for high-tech products supported by an extensive stakeholder dialogue. For developing D4R measures a central intermediary is useful to moderate and manage the process, translate between, business, technical and environmental terms, and bridge the time gap between design and end-of-life treatment.
In the first step a meta-study identified design related life cycle impacts related to the product life cycle (0). Based on those outcomes D4R measures were developed. Additional measures were collected by literature research or derived from findings of previous technology research projects (1). Those findings were transformed into a first draft of a design catalogue (2), describing each design measure with its technology constraints, environmental impacts and economical implications. Moreover D4R measures were classed into categories such as design for lifetime extension, for depollution, for collection and for upgradeability. In several feedback loops with relevant players throughout the product life cycle, technology constraints, environmental impacts and economical implications were assessed, measures refined and additional measures identified (3). After several loops ? constrained by the numbers of stakeholders (knowledge) or time available ? the design measures can be transferred into a final guidance document (4). This can be published as PDF, as a printed catalogue or in form of a searchable web-database.
Suitable D4R measures, depending on technical feasibility, costs, business strategies and interests, can be implemented in (prototype) products (5). When the final design of a product is finished, the intermediary or a third party can assess the D4R design using scientific tools such as life cycle analysis, life cycle costing, and resource availability indicators (6).
Besides explaining the research approach, selected technical feasible, economical and environmental sustainable D4R measures for photovoltaic systems and laptops, which were identified during the process, will be shown in this paper, addressing similarities and differences of both products.
Although considering D4R principles in the design phase may prolong the product development process, the resulting benefits will outweigh the effort.