An Exploration of Designing E-Remanufacturing Course

An Exploration of Designing E-Remanufacturing Course

Bo Xing (Department of Mechanical and Aeronautical Engineering, University of Pretoria, South Africa) and Wen-Jing Gao (Department of New Product Development, Mei Yuan Mould Design and Manufacturing Co., Ltd, China)
Copyright: © 2015 |Pages: 11
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-5888-2.ch066
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2. Background

Remanufacturing is an attractive business option involving value recovery and the reuse of used products. In the process of remanufacturing, the used products (returns) are collected from the disposer market and then they are transported to the remanufacturing plant where they are disassembled to the level of parts and components. The parts/components are thoroughly inspected, defective and worn out parts are repaired or replaced by new ones and then they are reassembled to build up the remanufactured product, which is supposed to be “as-good-as-new.” Technological upgrading of some parts or modules is also possible during the remanufacturing process. A wide range of products are being remanufactured world-wide such as automotive parts, tires, machine tools, photocopiers, cellular phones and computers.

Currently there is no single standard definition of remanufacturing existing in the literature and we have listed some of them as follows:

  • Definition 1: “Remanufacturing is an industrial process whereby used products referred to as cores are restored to useful life. During this process, the core passes through a number of remanufacturing operations, e.g. inspection, disassembly, component reprocessing, reassembly, and testing to ensure it meets the desired product standards. This could sometimes mean that the cores need to be upgraded and modernized according to the customer requirements (Östlin, Sundin, & Björkman, 2008).”

  • Definition 2: “Remanufacturing is an end-of-life strategy that reduces the use of raw materials and saves energy while preserving the value added during the design and manufacturing processes (Zwolinski, Lopez-Ontiveros, & Brissaud, 2006).”

  • Definition 3: “Remanufacturing can be seen then as an advantageous product recovery option. Not only is it the case, as it is with other options e.g. recycling, that less waste must be landfilled and less virgin material consumed in manufacturing but also the value added in the manufacturing of the components is also “recovered.” It also saves the energy needed to transform and sort the material in recycling products (Langella, 2007).”

  • Definition 4: “Remanufacturing is the ultimate form of recycling. It conserves not only the raw material content but also much of the value added during the processes required to manufacture new products (Giuntini & Gaudette, 2003).”

  • Definition 5: “Remanufacturing is particularly well suited for end-of-life products that include components characterized by long technology cycles and low technological obsolescence, and when ex ante uncertainty regarding usage intensity results in “over-engineering for certain user groups in order to meet the needs of other user groups” (Toffel, 2004).”

Key Terms in this Chapter

NetLogo: A free, programmable modeling environment which is capable of simulating complex situations such as natural and social phenomena. It is easy to learn and suitable for both research and education purpose.

e-Reverse Logistics: The marriage between the Internet and logistic system owing to its ability to integrate Internet-based information system in order to adapt themselves automatically in terms of supply, production and demand.

Agent-Based Modeling and Simulation (ABMS): A practice tool which used to capture the behavioral characteristics of interconnecting agents and the environment around them.

Radio-Frequency Identification (RFID): Is an evolution of bar-codes systems that uses tags to transmit item-level information to a wireless receiver.

E-Business: A technological innovation where negotiations and actual transactions of goods and services are conducted electronically, rather than physically.

e-Remanufacturing: A new way to manage remanufacturing process and relationships between trading partners by using novel information and communication technologies (e.g., radio frequency identification (RFID), and wireless sensor network (WSN)) to share information, facilitate transactions, and improve customer service.

Remanufacturing: An environmentally friendly strategy whereby the used products are recovered to useful life.

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