Wallat, Phillip; Lawrenz, Sebastian; Lohrengel, Armin

Design for reuse, remanufacturing repair and recycling are important step towards the circular economy. The engineering design process contains certain steps to develop a product methodical, but the fit for circularity is not always taken into account. During each step of the process, the circularity of the product will be determined for a certain amount by decisions for materials and joint technology. In this paper, we present a holistic system that assist the design engineer during the working process, to design products for an advanced circular economy. The system will be presented in a structured manner by following the software development lifecycle. The first step towards our product design assistance is a database containing information about recycling processes, such as alternative materials or joint technologies. To initiate the program development, we focus on the parts within a product made out of materials that are already as a fact in the database and implement this into the mechanical design process. These can maybe decrease the overall performance of a product but might come with a vast increase the sustainability. The designer can decide if the changes will be accepted or not, depending on the needed performance and circular approach of the product. A further possibility is to design parts of one product for various circular approaches by following the suggestions from the product. Designing a hard to recycle part for a reuse approach can either increase the circularity or even enable the product to be circular. The system architecture is modular and begins with tackling small use cases. However, by modular system architecture, the overall system can be extended iterative and continuously improved, as well as adapt new user requirements. Afterwards it is possible the program will establish best use cases within the product development for various circular approaches.