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Smart/Sustainable Manufacturing

Smart/Sustainable Manufacturing illustrationThe idea of sustainable manufacturing is to reduce the environmental impact to such a degree that future generations can still benefit from this style of manufacturing. To achieve this vision, research into the reduction of waste and energy consumption must be carried out. At least two phases of a product’s lifecycle must be investigated: the design and manufacturing phases. During design, decisions are made that affect the entire lifecycle. Making informed decisions is necessary to reducing the environmental impact of a product. The manufacturing phase also plays a significant role in the environmental impact of a product. Investigating the design and operation new energy efficient machine tools, process planning, and scheduling is very important.

Smart manufacturing is one method of pursuing sustainable manufacturing. It combines manufacturing with data driven decision making. Sensors extract data from manufacturing, shop floor, and company processes, to provide information that will help reduce waste and increase efficiency. This data can be processed through AI techniques to make necessary decisions in improving the manufacturing and distribution of goods. The sharing of this data will also reduce waste within a company and across an entire supply chain.