The importance of remanufacturing has been increasing since stricter regulations on protecting the environment were enforced. Remanufacturing is considered as the main means of retaining value from used products and components in order to drive a circular economy. However, it is more complex than traditional manufacturing due to the uncertainties associated with the quality, quantities and return timing of used products and components. Over the past few years, various methods of optimising remanufacturing outcomes have been developed to make decisions such as identifying the best End-Of-Life (EOL) options, acquiring the right amounts of cores, deciding the most suitable disassembly level, applying suitable cleaning techniques, and considering product commonality across different product families. A decision being made at one remanufacturing activity will greatly affect the decisions at subsequent activities, which will affect remanufacturing outcomes, i.e. productivity, economic performance effectiveness, and the proportion of core that can be salvaged. Therefore, a holistic way of integrating different decisions over multiple remanufacturing activities is needed to improve remanufacturing outcomes, which is a major knowledge gap. This paper reviews current remanufacturing practice in order to highlight both the challenges and opportunities, and more importantly, offers useful insights on how such a knowledge gap can be bridged.
- core acquisition
- end of life option