Browse Publications Technical Papers 2023-01-0988

Designing and Innovating for Circularity: An Engineering Life Cycle Approach for Complex and Certified Products 2023-01-0988

The concept of the circular economy provides a framework for a more efficient closed-loop economy. Much literature has been published focusing on circular business models and assessing environmental impact throughout the life cycle. A move towards more circular business models, where the focus transitions to the delivery of a capability rather than the delivery of a product, presents new challenges to manufacturers of complex or certified engineered products. The aviation industry has established several engineering disciplines, life cycle design, and certification approaches that (while not designed with the circular economy in mind) underpin the principles of the circular economy. This paper provides a new conceptual framework for the circular economy that integrates the engineering principles that drive circularity around the life cycle for designing, producing, and operating complex and certified engineering systems. It also identifies the engineering and operational principles that support the implementation of circular economy principles for complex and certified engineering systems, those already established, and those that would benefit from further research and development. Then goes on to explore how these principles, when applied by companies, industry ecosystems, and policymakers, can underpin the move from linear to circular principles and broadly apply to industries producing complex or certified engineering products.


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