Recycling and Life-Cycle Analysis
Product design greatly influences the recycling and reuse of manufacturing materials. This article presents a design for recycling strategy based on ease of disassembly, minimizing process scrap, using readily recyclable materials, and labelling or otherwise identifying parts. It also discusses the concept of life-cycle analysis (LCA), a quantitative accounting of the environmental and economic costs of using a given material and the energy required to make, distribute, operate, and eventually dispose of the host product and its constituent materials. An important but often overlooked step in the LCA process is to identify potential improvement pathways.
The primary goal of failure analysis is to prevent the recurrence of product failures. This article discusses the sequence of activities in failure analysis and offers insight on how to gather background information, examine and assess damage, and identify the cause of the problem. It also explains where to look for evidence and how to collect samples for various types of testing. In addition, the article provides an introduction to fracture mechanics and explains how to predict and avoid fractures, including fatigue fracture, through testing and computational techniques.
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