A global perspective on the environmental challenges facing the automotive industry: State-of-the-art and directions for the future

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With support from the US National Science Foundation and Department of Energy, a global benchmarking study of the status of Environmentally Benign Manufacturing (EBM) has recently been completed. The study [1], completed under the aegis of the World Technology Evaluation Center at Loyola College in Maryland, gathered information on research and development around the world aimed at developing alternative methods for materials processing with the purpose of minimizing toxic material generation and optimizing products and by-products for sustainability and reuse characteristics. The study reviewed the current status of EBM research, development, and applications in the United States, Japan, and Europe with a view towards evaluating the competitive status of US efforts. Information was acquired from the technical literature as well as through visits to industry, national laboratories, universities, etc. One area of focus within the study was the automotive industry. This paper summarizes many of the key findings from the global benchmarking study that relate to the automotive industry and identifies areas that require attention for the future.

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International Journal of Vehicle Design