Smart production innovations are set to revolutionise manufacturing, yet little is known about their impact on sustainability. This chapter focuses on the evaluation of production innovations related to Industry 4.0 that may make products and processes more sustainable or less sustainable based on the application in different production systems. A review of current literature and use of sustainability hierarchies finds that, in the environmental dimension, mass production would benefit most from the introduction of a pull principle whereas for mass customization, machine to machine communication is recommended. The use of augmented reality is indicated as an asset to the sustainability of direct digital manufacturing. Results including the environmental, social and economic dimensions of sustainability are confirmed using value analysis.
Part of the book: Mass Production Processes