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  1. 1. Apple and the Environment Side 1 af 10 Design for Environment at Apple Computer: A Case Study of the Power Macintosh 7200 Presented at the May 1996 International Symposium on Electronics & the Environment in Dallas, Texas. Sponsored by The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc., The IEEE Environment, Health and Safety Committee of the Technical Activities Board. Abstract Apple Computer, Inc. has begun to practice Design for Environment as part of new product development, with the goal of incorporating beneficial environmental attributes into Apple's products and synthesizing them with other requirements such as cost and manufacturability. This case study describes environmental performance improvements achieved in the new Power Macintosh 7200 desktop product which was released in the summer of 1995 to replace the Power Macintosh 7100. The product development team introduced a number of innovations that were both economically and environmentally beneficial, including a 25% decrease in average power consumption and a modular design that simplifies re-configuration, facilitates servicing, and speeds disassembly. This design effort demonstrated that addressing environmental objectives is generally synergistic with the fundamental product requirements--cost, manufacturability, ease of service, and functional performance. As a result of this case study, a number of design enhancements were identified that could measurably improve the performance of future desktop products. In addition, specific steps were recommended to help incorporate the systematic practice of Design for Environment into Apple's new product development process. I. Introduction With the increasing importance of environmental attributes in consumer products, Apple Computer has made a transition from viewing environmental performance as a compliance issue to viewing it as a customer requirements issue. Environmental factors must now be considered as an integral part of business decision-making at both the strategic planning level and the day-to-day operating level. Having recognized this imperative, Apple is working toward developing a greater awareness of the environmental attributes of its products, and channeling this awareness into the new product development process. The potential benefits of environmental 18-09-00
  2. 2. Apple and the Environment Side 2 af 10 performance improvements include not only greater customer satisfaction, but also improved product line profitability through innovations in materials management, manufacturing, and asset recovery. Apple's product development teams have already recognized these opportunities, and many important environmental performance improvements have been introduced in recent years. However, past environmental performance improvements have not been implemented in a systematic way that enables improvements to be leveraged across product lines. Apple's Environmental Technologies and Strategies Group is responsible for consolidating Apple's Design for Environment (DFE) capabilities and assuring that DFE guidelines and metrics are incorporated into new product development. Decision Focus Incorporated (DFI) was retained to support their efforts, and is helping to develop methods and tools for measuring and improving the environmental performance of Apple products. To better understand its DFE practices and performance, Apple conducted a review of the Power Macintosh 7200 central processing unit (CPU) which was released in August 1995. The goals of this case study were to: l Quantify the extent to which specific product features contribute toward environmental attributes such as recyclability and resource conservation, as well as other traditional performance attributes such as ease of service and ease of assembly l Identify areas where additional cost-effective environmentally-beneficial improvements may be possible l Recommend how the lessons learned with this product might be leveraged in future or on going product development efforts It should be noted that the DFE review of the Power Macintosh 7200 CPU focused primarily on the environmental performance attributes of the finished product itself, and not on the processes employed by vendors and raw material suppliers to manufacture and deliver the materials and subassemblies that are incorporated into the product. Note also that other system components such as a monitor, a keyboard and mouse, and intermediate and final packaging were not included in this review. II. Methodology The DFE review of the Power Macintosh 7200 CPU was conducted through four basic steps: 1. Determination of relevant product performance attributes. There are many environmental and non-environmental dimensions of product performance. However, due to the environmental focus of this review, it was necessary to limit the range of attributes considered to those that are either direct indicators of or strongly correlated with environmental performance. Key environmental performance attributes considered include: ¡ energy conservation 18-09-00
  3. 3. Apple and the Environment Side 3 af 10 ¡ ease of disassembly and separation of materials ¡ recyclability of components and materials ¡ the presence and nature of banned, restricted, toxic or hazardous constituents (e.g. brominated compounds) ¡ material conservation Key non-environmental performance attributes considered that are strongly correlated with environmental performance include: ¡ ease of assembly ¡ ease of service ¡ product economics 2. Selection of relevant metrics for each performance attribute. To the extent feasible with available data, quantitative metrics were sought that provide a measurement of the extent to which the product embodies each of the above attributes. 3. Information gathering to support the assessment. Information concerning product characteristics and design decisions was gathered through interviews with key members of the development team, supplemented by additional data obtained from vendors and outside sources. It should be noted that the information used for this DFE review was obtained after most of the design decisions had been made and just prior to manufacturing ramp-up. 4. Assessment of product performance using the selected metrics. The information and data gathered in step #3 were interpreted and synthesized with respect to the selected performance attributes. Where data were available, metrics were calculated and compared against either the previous generation product (7100 CPU) or relevant benchmarks. Importance of Energy Conservation In the computer industry, the most visible and best-understood in terms of environmental performance is a computer's energy conservation characteristics (typically expressed as energy consumption during operation). There are several reasons why energy conservation is and will continue to be an important environmental indicator. l Though its successful Energy Star program, The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has established de facto standards for energy conservation that are embraced by Apple and other major manufacturers. The Energy Star logo has become an effective marketing tool, even in European countries, and is now required for all U.S. Federal Government procurement. l The environmental benefits of energy conservation are easy for the public to understand. According to EPA, every kilowatt-hour of electricity not used prevents the emission of 680 g. of CO2, 5.8 g. of SO2 and 2.5 g. of NOx. This translates into several tons of reduced emissions over the lifetime of an Energy Star-compliant computer. 18-09-00
  4. 4. Apple and the Environment Side 4 af 10 l Energy conservation results directly in operating cost reduction, and generally results in a quieter-running, more efficiently-designed machine. However, it is important to recognize that an energy-efficient computer is not necessarily a "green" computer -- this is a misconception commonly expressed in the news media. There are many other aspects of product performance that determine the environmental soundness of a particular design, including the specific attributes mentioned above. III. Product Overview The overarching market requirement for the 7200 development team was to design a low cost, PowerPC-based desktop computer on the Macintosh platform, with multiple expansion slots. The lower cost of manufacturing criterion was specified as a product cost "less than the Power Macintosh 7100 CPU and approximately equal to the cost of a Power Macintosh 6100 CPU." The actual Apple product cost will fall approximately 15-20% below a similarly configured 7100 CPU and approximately 5% above a comparable 6100 CPU. The 7200 enclosure was designed as a replacement for the 7100 sheet metal enclosure. The design effort incorporated a number of innovations, including: l The "outrigger" chassis support which assures both safety and ease of access for service. l The quick-latch connections that secure the enclosure top to the enclosure bottom. l The snap-in connections that connect the floppy and hard drives to the chassis. l Ease of access to the logic board. The innovations listed above are a consequence of the goals that guided the design team. Using the characteristics of the 7100 enclosure as a reference, the enclosure design team's goals for the 7200 were: l Design a lower cost enclosure. It is estimated that the new enclosure will cost about 25% less than the 7100 enclosure. l Design for increased serviceability. l Design for increased manufacturability. l Design for improved configurability to accommodate changing market and customer requirements such as higher capacity hard drives, more memory, etc. and to increase product configuration flexibility on the manufacturing line. l Design for improved EMI performance. l Design for improved thermal characteristics. Note that Design for Environment goals were not explicitly included, but were addressed by the development team as an adjunct to their primary goals. For the logic board and other electrical systems, the design goals in order of priority were: l Low cost (as defined above). l Inclusion of the basic feature set of the Macintosh platform (e.g. I/O options, etc.). l Improved system performance relative to the 7100. l Expansion capabilities, including expansion slots for PCI, DRAM, and video RAM, 18-09-00
  5. 5. Apple and the Environment Side 5 af 10 and multiple secondary storage devices--hard drive, floppy drive, CD-ROM, and an open bay for a consumer designated storage device. The design team explicitly considered environmental design factors to the extent necessary in order to a. meet Energy Star power consumption criteria, and b. position the product for sales into the home market by designing a quieter running computer. In the future, as Apple's DFE practice matures, it is expected that additional environmental criteria will be included explicitly in new product requirements. IV. Summary of Environmental Performance For purposes of this study, the Power Macintosh 7200 CPU's environmental performance was measured with respect to nine major performance attributes. In addition, the study reviewed the product's performance with respect to three major non-environmental attributes which are strongly correlated with environmental performance--ease of assembly (manufacturability), ease of service (serviceability) and product economics (cost). Within each of these twelve performance attributes, specific metrics were selected and data were collected to the extent feasible. Table 1 characterizes the overall product performance, relative to the 7100 CPU where appropriate, in terms of the key metrics or features associated with each attribute. It should be noted that the present analysis is mainly focused upon the "downstream" product performance during customer use and at end-of-life. It does not address an important dimension of product performance over the full life-cycle--namely, the "upstream" environmental impacts associated with the fabrication, transport and assembly of materials and components that comprise the finished products. Upstream impacts include air emissions, solid and hazardous wastes, and consumption of resources including materials, energy, and water. While upstream information is important in determining the overall environmental profile of a product, it was deliberately excluded from the scope of this study for two reasons: l Reliable data are difficult to obtain and the range of uncertainty is typically large. l The product development team did not have access to this type of information in the course of their decision-making. Therefore, the following performance evaluation focused upon those environmental performance issues over which the team had both visibility and control. The only performance category in Table 1 that corresponds to upstream impacts is Material Conservation. 18-09-00
  6. 6. Apple and the Environment Side 6 af 10 Table 1: Summary of Environmental Performance Attribute Performance Assessment Energy Star Compliance; 25% less power consumption. Supports all 4 Energy monitor power modes of DPMS. Unique user interface for customized Conservation power management. Ease of Simplified fastening systems should speed disassembly (actual time has Disassembly not been measured against the 7100). 100% of large plastic parts (>25 grams) are marked for sorting. Separability Integral finishes and labels are utilized, requiring no separation (except for the product logo). At least 85% of enclosure materials are recyclable. 100% of the sheet metal components are recyclable without the need for paint stripping Recyclability or coating removal. At least 95% by weight of the engineering thermoplastics used in the enclosure are recyclable using existing recycling technologies. The modular design allows easy installation of hardware upgrades such Upgradability as expansion cards, additional memory, and increased capacity or enhanced performance of fixed storage devices. Nickel based paints were eliminated, reducing cost and ending the use of an undesirable substance. The external plastic parts contain no flame Hazardous retardants. Heavy metal contaminants such as mercury or beryllium Constituents were avoided. Alkaline dry cell batteries on the logic board are not a significant environmental concern. Weight is approximately 12% less than that of a comparable 7100 CPU. Material The number of mother board layers was reduced from 6 to 4--reducing Conservation mass by about 33%. Board manufacturing yield was increased by eliminating unnecessary copper etching. The engineering thermoplastics in the enclosure contain no recycled resins. About 66% of components are compatible across the PowerPC Common product line. A common API for power management is compatible Components both across the new generation desktop product line and with PowerBook products. Design has less complexity, utilizes latches and snap-in connections, Ease of and uses 50% fewer screws. The product is reconfigurable on the Assembly assembly line. No specialized tools are required. Top half of the chassis can be propped up with a safety latch allowing quick, easy access to the logic Ease of Service board. Modular design allows for rapid and simple replacement of components. Power Macintosh 7200 CPU product cost is projected to fall Product approximately 15-20% below a similarly configured 7100 CPU and Economics approximately 5% above a comparable 6100 CPU. V. Implications of Findings 18-09-00
  7. 7. Apple and the Environment Side 7 af 10 While assessing environmental performance is useful, additional insights can be gained by examining the implications of specific design decisions. The environmental performance implications of significant Power Macintosh 7200 design decisions are summarized in Table 2. Table 2: Performance Implications of Design Decisions Design Decision Performance Benefits (Costs) Eliminated painting, reduced number of parts, reduced cost, Integral ABS top cover increased recyclability Heat-staked metal EMI Ease of assembly; low cost, quick connections (requires shields extra step for material separation) Use of quick release Ease of service, disassembly, assembly, upgradability connections Separation of I/O back Improved material conservation, reduced cost (increases part plate into two pieces count) Outrigger device for Ease of service, disassembly, design robustness (requires the servicing use of new components) Ease of service, upgrade, expansion, disassembly, assembly, Modular design and reuse; improved configurability. Improved material conservation - reduced board weight and 4-Layer board use of raw materials Increased manufacturing yields, decreased use of etching Blank board areas not chemicals, reduced EMI. (Increases the weight of the non- etched functional portion of the logic board). Reduced part cost and energy consumption - allowed for Re-engineered video circuitry power down (DPMS); improved design RAMDACs robustness. (Increases design costs) increased low power efficiency, reduced heat generation, Efficient Power Supply improved design robustness (increases design costs) Low power CMOS Reduced energy consumption. (marginally increases costs) devices Reduced microprocessor energy consumption during low Sparky controller chip demand periods. (Increases design costs; marginal increase in materials cost) Power management Improved ease of use and customer configurability user software user interface interface (Increases design costs) Implementation of Improved design robustness and potential for power savings common API features to be utilized by the user The above-cited performance improvements in the Power Macintosh 7200 CPU were achieved through informal initiatives on the part of the design teams. With a more systematic DFE effort and more explicit design goals, it will be possible to achieve even greater improvements in future product development efforts. Table 3 lists the main areas for potential improvement that were noted during discussions with the development team members. 18-09-00
  8. 8. Apple and the Environment Side 8 af 10 Table 3: Potential Design Improvements by Performance Attribute Attribute Potential Design Improvements Enable power-down of non-processor ASICs and independent power- down of idle ASIC cells(already a design goal). A new I/O controller Energy design that will power down the SCSI bus when the hard drive has Conservation spun down (already a design goal). Specification of a hard drive that is designed to allow more power-down/power-up cycles. Ease of Disassembly times should be measured relative to industry Disassembly benchmarks. Minimize the use of screws. Fastening methods to be avoided include incompatible adhesives and Separability heat staking between non-compatible parts. Potential recovery, refurbishment, remanufacture and re-use of Reusability components should be considered. The pros and cons of intermediate packaging recycling with vendors Recyclability should be evaluated. Compatible adhesives or other means of attachment should be investigated. Product users should be able to upgrade drives. Enabling processor Upgradability upgrade without entire board swap. To the extent possible, incorporate process related issues and vendor Hazardous information that details the hazardous constituents of components and Constituents subassemblies. Material Materials with increased recycled content can be sought, especially for Conservation internal, non-visible parts. Design Coordinate strategic environmental decisions across all Apple robustness platforms. Ease of Minimize part count. Assembly Ease of If screws are necessary, use uniform screw-types. Service Product Detailed product cost data was not available for review. Economics VI. Next Steps The Power Macintosh 7200 case study has demonstrated that enhancement of environmental performance can be synergistic with improvements in cost and functional performance, resulting in a better-differentiated, higher-quality product. In the future, environmental performance improvements can be encouraged through the adoption of explicit design goals, and through a more systematic integration of DFE methodology into Apple's new product development process. In the long run, DFE should become a routine part of new development, just as Design for Reliability is today. The following are additional steps that Apple is considering to support the development and application of DFE skills, technologies and practices within the product development organization: 18-09-00
  9. 9. Apple and the Environment Side 9 af 10 l Develop an understanding of best design practices used by other electronics firms that are committed to improving environmental performance. l Develop a standardized set of environmental performance metrics whereby product development teams can set objectives and measure improvement. l Review existing DFE practices at Apple and lessons learned from past efforts. Build on this knowledge base to develop a set of DFE guidelines that address various aspects of Apple product design and encompass the full product life cycle. l Develop performance assessment and decision support tools that facilitate DFE and are well integrated with the existing tool suite. l Work with Apple suppliers to develop a clearer understanding of the environmental attributes of components and associated upstream operations. l Extend Apple's product development process to explicitly consider DFE issues, particularly with regard to recovery, reuse and recycling of obsolete or discarded products. l Identify eco-labeling requirements early in the design process and, to the extent possible, incorporate them into the product requirements document. Authors: Joseph Fiksel Battelle Memorial Institute 505 King Avenue Columbus, OH 43201 USA Kelly Cook Decision Focus Incorporated 650 Castro St., Suite 300 Mountain View, CA 94041 USA Stan Roberts and Dani Tsuda, Apple Computer, Inc. 1 Infinite Loop Cupertino, CA 95014 USA VII. Acknowledgments The authors wish to thank the Power Macintosh 7200 design team, and especially Dale Adams, Bill De Meulenaere, Mike Dhuey, and Mark Pontarelli for their assistance in the preparation of this paper. 1996 Apple Computer, Inc. Apple, the Apple logo, and Power Macintosh are registered trademarks of Apple Computer, Inc. VIII. Glossary of Acronyms 18-09-00
  10. 10. Apple and the Environment Side 10 af 10 Glossary of Acronyms Acronym Definition ABS acrylonitrile butadiene styrene API application program interface CD-ROM compact disk-read only memory CMOS complimentary metal oxide semiconductor CPU central processing unit DFE design for environment DPMS display power management standard DRAM dynamic random access memory EMI electromagnetic interference I/O input/output PCI personal computer interface RAM random access memory RAMDAC random access memory digital analog converter SCSI small computer system interface Corporate Initiatives | Product Design | Product Manufacturing | Product Use | Product End of Life Search Site Map | Search Tips | Options | Keywords Contact Us | Privacy Notice Copyright © 2000 Apple Computer, Inc. All rights reserved. 1-800-MY-APPLE 18-09-00