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Sustainability 2017, 9(9), 1540; doi:10.3390/su9091540

Cascade Use and the Management of Product Lifecycles

1
Department of Business Administration, Economics and Law, Cascade Use Research Group, Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg, Ammerländer Heerstr. 114-118, 26129 Oldenburg, Germany
2
Industrial and Management Systems Engineering, Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources, West Virginia University, Morgantown, WV 26506, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 23 June 2017 / Revised: 12 August 2017 / Accepted: 25 August 2017 / Published: 29 August 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Economic, Business and Management Aspects of Sustainability)
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Abstract

This paper explores the challenges related to the End-Of-Life phase of products and circular systems of reuse and recycling within the commonly established frameworks of product lifecycles. Typically, Original Equipment Manufacturer-centric supply chain perspectives neglect the complexity at the End-Of-Life where many third-parties are involved in reuse and recycling activities. Based on a review of product lifecycle and related recycling literature, this study proposes the application of ‘cascades’, a term originally coined within the biomass domain. We propose and subsequently apply the ‘cascade use methodology’ and identify additional and value-adding End-Of-Life solutions for products and materials. The adoption of cascade utilization into product lifecycles is analyzed and critically discussed using case studies from independent remanufacturing and tire recycling, focusing on the End-Of-Life while excluding business models as renting or sharing. Although theoretically feasible, we argue that the practical adoption of ‘cascade use’ deserves more attention from researchers and practitioners in order to become an integral part of the comprehensive management of product lifecycles. View Full-Text
Keywords: product life cycle; cascade utilization; recycling; reuse; remanufacturing; Closed-Loop Supply Chains (CLSC); Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) product life cycle; cascade utilization; recycling; reuse; remanufacturing; Closed-Loop Supply Chains (CLSC); Product Lifecycle Management (PLM)
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Kalverkamp, M.; Pehlken, A.; Wuest, T. Cascade Use and the Management of Product Lifecycles. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1540.

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