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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Evaluating the relationship between use phase environmental impacts and manufacturing process precision

  • Author(s): Helu, Moneer
  • Vijayaraghavan, Athulan
  • Dornfeld, David
  • et al.

The environmental impact of most consumer products is dominated by their use phase. However, these impacts tend to be driven by the manufacture of the product’s components since components fabricated with higher precision typically allow the product to operate at higher efficiencies. This paper investigates the relationship between precision and life cycle environmental impacts by extending the traditional LCA methodology to evaluate the impact of manufacturing process precision on the functional performance of a product during its use phase. The implications of this relationship to manufacturing decision-making are also discussed as sustainability concerns may support the use of higher precision processes.

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