The learning outcomes that are assessed by this coursework demonstrate:
1. A systematic understanding of the activities of industrial organisations at all points of the product life-cycle from raw material extraction to disposal and a critical awareness of current approaches to mitigating associated environmental impacts.
2. A comprehensive understanding of assessment and analysis techniques that can be applied to the student's own research into ways to reduce the environmental impact and energy consumption of industrial organisations.
3. A conceptual understanding of the energy requirements of the components of common industrial processes such as motors, pumps, heaters and compressors that will allow students to critically evaluate research methodologies and outputs from a range of related academic disciplines.
4. Originality in tackling the problems of meeting consumer demand for products and associated services in a competitive globalised industrial context while minimising the associated life-cycle energy consumption
5. The qualities and transferable skills necessary for employment in tomorrow's low- carbon industries, specifically the skills of decision making in unpredictable situations and the ability to research and learn independently, required for CPD.
Tasks to be undertaken:
You are the sustainability manager for a manufacturer of electric motorcycles. At present, all material and energy flows are linear (no reuse or recycling). You have been asked to investigate the application of the ‘Circular Economy’ concept to the company and its products. Your role also involves you in the planning of future products and the strategic direction of the business.
1. Describe the different components used in your product and the degree to which the design of different components affects their suitability for the circular economy. The main types of component are:
• Structural parts (chassis, wheels, suspension, seat assembly, etc.)
• Electrical parts (motors, switches, wires, circuit boards, batteries) and
• Miscellaneous parts (tyres, transmission, bodywork, upholstery, etc.)
2. Describe a future sustainable industrial system in terms of the stages in the lifecycle from raw material extraction through manufacturing and use to disposal, after the company has made the material flows as ‘circular’ as possible.
3. For each of the types of component above, describe the short term and longer term steps that the company should take to get to the sustainable system you described above. Where possible, illustrate your arguments from case studies in the literature.
Deliverables to be submitted for assessment:
Your report should be no more than 2400 words. Use appendices to include additional charts, illustrations and data as necessary. You may find it useful to structure your report according to the list of tasks to be undertaken. Appendices should be no longer than 5 pages in total. The document should be produced in the style of a technical report (formal, factual and to the point). You should use a font of size no less than 10 points.
How the work will be marked:
Assessment will be based on the extent to which the learning outcomes listed above have been met, and the extent to which the above instructions, notes and guidance are complied with (for example regarding word limit, style, structure, referencing and citation, etc.). The criteria below relate to the current pass mark of 50%.
• Introduction to the report - 10 marks
• Description of parts and application of circular economy concepts - 30 marks
• Description of the future industrial system and life cycle stages - 30 marks
• Descriptions of short & long term steps - 20 marks
• Clarity of writing style, referencing and structure of report - 10 marks
Work that is deficient in most of the respects outlined above, showing no evidence of critical analysis will be awarded an outright fail of 44% or less. A marginal fail of 45% to 49% may be awarded to work that demonstrates some understanding of the problem but where the understanding, accuracy, organisation and critical analysis fail to justify a marginal pass.