Teaching green manufacturing the new way
EDUCATORS are looking to change the paradigm in how green manufacturing is taught. Among the trends that need to be followed is the incorporation of life-cycle assessment teaching, to enable engineering and industrial design students to better understand sustainability.
A new approach to teaching must be adopted, so that new and fresh ideas in the growth of green manufacturing, as well as changes in industry, can be incorporated. Another thing that will be of benefit is for engineering faculty boards to include private sector industry experts, so that they can make their input into creating curriculums that are relevant and up-to-date.
Curriculums should include hands-on projects in the lab as well as classroom time. Ideally courses in green manufacturing should analyze manufacturing processes with intent to point out areas of adverse environmental impact and minimizing it, consider alternative processes that incorporate environmental improvements through recycling, and the substitution of environmentally favorable materials and redesign of processes.
Such courses should also be able to valuate life-cycles of products and processes, and propose strategies for minimizing environmental impact while still meeting design and economic requirements. They must investigate end-of-use strategies, including design-for-recycling tools, which would be demonstrated and practiced on real products.
They must conduct material selection with the goal of reducing the environmental impact of a product and processes, while simultaneously reducing material costs. As well as design rules and processes to meet both current market needs and green manufacturing requirements by selecting suitable technical and supply chain management schemes.