About the method
This innovative method addresses the most important current issues in design for sustainability. Here, a normative method for multi-criteria decision making (MCDM) is used. The normative principles provide a thorough understanding of the consequences of design decisions and allow for measurement of the consistency of the preferences assigned to each decision criteria. These criteria consist of not only all significant environmental impacts but also costs incurred during a product life cycle. Since both cost and environmental impacts have significant sources of uncertainty, these uncertainties are accounted for and considered in the analysis within this method.
This method will be represented within the e-Design framework, which is a library suite of modular ontologies that enhances distributed design engineering capabilities. The resulting information models within the Semantic Web compatible platform will support interoperability with other Semantic Web compatible software tools. As a result, the design intent and documented concepts that inform the sustainable design decisions will engage engineers in the entire design process with a better understanding of the reasons and justifications for decisions.
About the researcher
Douglas Eddy is a PhD candidate in the Department of Mechanical and Industrial Engineering at UMass-Amherst.
This material is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant No. 0332508 and by industry members of the NSF Center for e-Design.