Original Date: 09/14/1998
Revision Date: 01/18/2007
Best Practice : Design for Environment Program
RMSC developed and implemented a Design For Environment (DFE) program which eliminates hazardous materials and processes, rather than managing the hazardous waste created. This program also enables the company to incorporate alternative materials and processes during the initial program development phases. Prior to DFE, no environmental design alternative guidance processes existed at Raytheon Missile Systems Company (RMSC), nor were any available from DOD or the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Management recognized that hazardous materials and waste were design defects, and changed the company’s design philosophy.
DFE is a commonplace dimension in the overall optimization process, creating internal and external (customer/supplier) interfaces that are willing to spearhead green product and production system development. Among the elements for implementing DFE are having a consistent, repeatable methodology or process in place; keeping environmental considerations in mind when designing; performing trade studies and data analysis to determine design alternatives and environmental risks; and assessing the environmental impacts of potential designs.
RMSC’s DFE program is fully integrated into the company’s Integrated Process Architecture at the strategic systems and detailed levels. Unlike other industry processes, this DFE program does not limit the environmental impact information at the systems engineering level. Instead, design engineers can use individual PC workstations to access this data in addition to approved material part lists; patented material selector software for material selection; and the Hammer software tool for risk assessment and life cycle analysis when determining a hazard rating of materials. RMSC also provides training for those involved in the design process so they can effectively implement DFE.
RMSC’s efforts on the design and implementation aspects of DFE have progressed over the past seven years. DFE alternative and risk data are now part of the company’s engineering data structure. Approved material part lists feature environmentally mitigated or friendly products. More than 1,500 materials have been ranked and over 40 material alternatives offered. RMSC implemented DFE when designing the dorsal fins for the Standard Missile program. The effort resulted in hundreds of dollars in savings per fin, as well as a safer workplace for employees by eliminating hazardous materials.
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