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Manufacturing Research Seminar


Thursday, September 12, 2002

4:00 – 5:00 p.m.

1005 HH Dow Building

ME Professor Steven J. Skerlos

U.S. Manufacturing and the Environment: Frontiers of the Early 21st Century

This seminar reviews the technical and economic realities of today’s environmental challenges as they specifically relate to the manufacturing and use of common metallic, polymeric, and electronics products. Incentives and inhibitors to environmental improvement are examined, along with cultural and situational differences that can lead to highly variable environmental performance between companies and nations. Technical challenges to environmental improvement, and current research in environmentally benign manufacturing, is reviewed including a case study in the development of sustainable metalworking fluid systems. The seminar concludes with a brief review of the research needs in the area established by industry, government, and academia at the 2001 Workshop on Environmentally Benign Manufacturing sponsored by the National Science Foundation.

Steve Skerlos received a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering with Highest Honors in 1994, and a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering in January 2000, both from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Since joining the Department of Mechanical Engineering at The University of Michigan in January 2000 as an Assistant Professor, he has received the National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Award and has served as co-director of the Initiative in Sustainable Aqueous Systems (iSAS) and member of the College of Engineering Council on the Environment. In 2002, Professor Skerlos has been invited to present his research and vision for Environmentally Conscious Manufacturing at expert conferences in Mexico, Canada, and the U.S., and has been invited to the Technical University Berlin to initiate a joint research and education activity considering issues of sustainability in product design and manufacturing.

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