Lifecycle Analysis for Environmentally Conscious Solid Freeform Manufacturing

Yanchun Luo
Ji Zhiming
Ming-Chuan Leu, Missouri University of Science and Technology
R. J. Caudill

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A lifecycle based process model for analyzing the environmental performance of SFM processes and SFM based rapid tooling processes is presented in this paper. The process environmental performance assessment model considers material, energy and disposal scenarios. The material use, process parameters (e.g. scanning speed) and power use can affect the environmental consequence of a process when material resource, energy, human health and environmental damage are taken into account. The presented method is applied to the SLA process and two SLA based rapid tooling processes. The method can be used to compare different rapid prototyping (RP) and RT processes in terms of their environmental friendliness and for further multi-objective decision making