A costing framework to support a sustainable approach to end-of-life vehicle recovery
thesisposted on 01.02.2011 by Gareth Coates
In order to distinguish essays and pre-prints from academic theses, we have a separate category. These are often much longer text based documents than a paper.
This thesis reports on the research undertaken to analyse the factors affecting end-oflife vehicle value, and to investigate a costing framework to assist the vehicle recovery industry in promoting sustainable vehicle recycling. The principal objective of this research is to develop decision support tools for the vehicle recovery sector to adopt more sustainable processing strategies, whilst meeting the requirements of impending and future legislative targets. The research contributions are divided into three parts. The first part reviews the most relative research in the areas of environmental concerns relating to the automotive sector, end-of-life vehicle recovery and associated costing techniques, to identify the most relevant research directions. The second part consists of a substantial program of data collection, which included; formal interviews, survey of treatment facilities, time-studies and vehicle teardowns, to generate a costing framework for the modelling of indirect and direct costs of both pre and post-fragmentation activities in vehicle recycling. The third part includes the design and implementation of a decision support costing system that enables end-of-life stakeholders to understand the main economics that underpin their operations, and to support future investment in more sustainable vehicle recovery activities. The applicability of the research concept has been demonstrated via three case studies. The results from the case studies have shown that although most end-of-life vehicle recoverers are currently profitable due to the strong demand for scrap metal, significant improvement in their processes and value recovery is possible through strategic investment. Such strategic investment in process improvement and expansion of recycling activities should be considered in light of future fluctuations in material markets and increasing costs of attaining higher recycling targets. In summary, this research has concluded that the realisation of environmentally friendly approaches to vehicle recycling and the long-term survival of the ELV recovery sector is very much dependent on the pro-active and direct involvement of automotive manufacturers in end-of-life vehicle recovery.
- Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering