Incorporating enhanced product responsibility for the end-of-life phase into product design is a challenge a manufacturer has to face today. Additional design requirements, e.g., environmental aspects, have to be considered. Furthermore, new legislation also requires the management of new processes, such as treatment and recycling. An approach for the realisation of product responsibility for the end-of-life phase is presented in this article. In terms of a holistic life cycle management, the framework of an evaluation of a product's end-of-life characteristics based on both product and process models is defined, which is directly linked to a planning approach for the processes in the end-of-life phase. Consequently, the assessment of the relevant end-of-life aspects, its integration into the conceptual design and a simulation-based planning of disassembly systems use a common data source for the product and process data. A conceptual framework implementing this approach is presented, as well as a software tool implementation.
Keywords: conceptual design, product management, requirements management, design for recycling, end-of-life, EOL processes planning, product responsibility, product design, life cycle management, LCM, simulation, disassembly planning, product recovery, industrial ecology, environmental manufacturing, green manufacturing