ICT products are full of environmental and sustainability issues. (conflict minerals, power consumption, recycling). To engineer the lifecycle by using an environmentally friendly approach to the design. Backed up by an environmentally friendly PC.
SME has no control over the selection materials for manufacture. They can only choose off-the-shelf specifications. Because of this they need to choose best available components such as: Low energy consumption. Reduced toxicity Facilitate component exchange. Choose to manufacture casing themselves
5 Decision Points during SME use phase in relation to above graph: 1. What the user should do when finished with product? Life extension, stay with user longer. Add emotional element to design. 2. What should a collection facility do? Refurbishment. PC needs to be easy to disassemble. 3. If recycled, should PC be dismantled manually or mechanically? Manually dismantled will achieve better recovery rates. Depends on labour costs
4. If exported as waste can it be manually dismantled and returned for final treatment? If incentives are accurate, then informal sector can be engaged to trade. Again ease of disassembly needed. 5. Once dismantled can downstream markets be found for all materials? Plastic casings have no downstream market If needed to be stored for long periods, informal trading could commence.
Complete disassembly allowed the complete separation of the system into its separate parts. The process took 3 min and 39 seconds with only a Phillips head screwdriver
Life cycle of electronic equipment can be very complex given global reach of products. The SME cannot engineer the life cycle to achieve the best environmental outcome. However the SME can help by choosing only the most environmentally friendly systems possible. This would make manufacturers think twice about producing poor environmentally friendly products if there is no market for them.