1. Sustainability requirements, like market and financial requirements of a product must
be prioritized in the design process. For example, manufacturing and lifecycle use of
a product have multiple environmental/social impacts including climate change,
human health and biodiversity. What should be the basis for prioritizing sustainability
Sustainability is often at odds with the traditional ways of product development since
the needs are different, we are looking at products that have longer lives, parts that
can be easily replaced Vs shorter lives ,the need to throw away products after
comparatively short periods of use, as parts cannot be easily manufactured and
replaced because they are not designed to standards, there is no regard for
emissions produced during production and use. Transportation requirements for
products are rarely considered as well as disposal at the end-of-life as goods are
manufactured where it is cheapest.
There is a need to change the way products are designed and manufactured at the
very beginning of the process.
Design for Excellence(Dfx) means:
Performance which includes:-
Product attributes- Easy to use
Predictability- perform to exact requirements
Robustness- Not easily broken
Extendability- Longer life
1. Low cost- fewer, standard parts: Can be easily replaced, need not replace the
2. User friendliness-Does not require additional products or be replaced
3. Manufacturability- Not difficult to manufacture so parts can be easily replaced
4. Serviceability- Can be fixed easily, routinely so need not replaced often
5. Sustainability(DfS) the requirements for these are different than the others:-
_Efficiently incorporates environmentally friendly materials.
_Minimal consumption of water energy, resources in all stages of production till
_Causes minimal emissions in gas, liquid and solid form during both
manufacturing and it’s use
_Has a long life is repairable and is efficient in use for all energy,
consumables and emissions
_Unlike traditional products with minimal life, these products can be upgraded to
extend their life
_ At the end of life these products can be reused and the materials can be
separated and recycled.
_ These products are in harmony with people and nature, they consider their
In the process of Design and manufacture both commercial and sustainability
have to be considered. For feasilbility by optimizing time and space , life cycle
Closed loop manufacturing should be considered in the design/innovation
Earth-Extraction-material processing-component manufacturing-assembly
and packaging-Distribution and sales-Installation-use-suport and service-
Sustainability- product development
Changes to be in-
Valuation of natural capital
Life cycle assessment tools
Systems thinking in multiple domains of time, people
6. The total impact of a product on the environment is equal to its unit impact times the
quantity of products in use over the market lifecycle. What is the implication of this
observation on the product design strategy?
(The response to the assignment questions must demonstrate the student's understanding of the DfS criteria and of the
dilemma that a designer faces in satifying multiple stakeholders and conflicting criteria)
The quantity of products in use over the lifecycle changes, this knowledge can help in
designing and innovation process for sustainability. Recognizing the current stage of the
life cycle for a product type is vital to a firm considering the introduction of a product of
that type. It is considerably easier to enter a market in a growth stage than it is to enter
a saturated, mature marketplace. Levels of competition in markets experiencing growth
are considerably less intense than in mature markets, where competitors are concerned
about loss of sales and market share. Introducing a product into a market characterized
by intense competition will probably prove expensive and result in retaliation from
The product life cycle can be used to determine likely competitive trends. The list below
outlines the typical levels of competition for each stage of the life cycle process.
Typical Competition for Each Product Life Cycle Stage
Levels of competition are practically non-existent since the company introducing the
product can be the sole supplier.
The market is still dominated by the product innovator, but other companies have
entered the market and developed smaller shares.
A single company usually remains the primary force in the market although it may not
be the product originator. The product innovator may have been overtaken by
subsequent market entrants. In addition, the market leader may be fending off
leadership challenges from other large competitors. Generally, the leading company's
share will experience decline over this period as competitive activity in the market
The leading company usually still holds its leadership position, but its share is smaller
than that of all other market competitors together.
A host of smaller companies are all engaged in trying to secure a market niche they can
dominate. Towards the conclusion of the saturation period, three of four competitors
typically emerge to dominate the market. Vigorous marketing allows these competitors
to hold the majority share.
The market leader during the saturation stage may be replaced by a competitor better
suited to competing in small, contracting markets. As specialized market segments
continue to decline in scale, larger-scale producers cease to perceive them as
profitable. Sales typically diminish across the board as products become more obsolete
and are replaced by newer technology.
The primary reason for stressing the importance of the product life cycle is that for each
stage or segment of the life cycle a different environmental strategy will prove best in
meeting the unique demands of that stage of the life cycle.
Market factors such as demand and supply are changing constantly as they pertain to
the company, market, and industry, so a detailed knowledge of the appropriate product
life cycle can make the sustainability strategy more timely and effective.