How Design for Manufacturability Applies to Sustainable Engineering

April 12, 2023
A sustainability engineer explains how she applies design for manufacturability methodology to low-resource ventures.

How do you apply Design for Manufacturability methodologies in low-resource settings? Few engineers can answer this question with confidence, but Iana Aranda doesn’t bat an eyelash. 

The director of Engineering Global Development at the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) leverages her mechanical engineering background to lead a team that operates at the intersection of engineering and sustainable development.

In this video, Aranda dissects the five dimensions of hardware-led ventures and explains the relevance of manufacturing optimization in low-resource settings, such as sub-Saharan Africa, where taking work away from the economy will likely have negative implications. “To ensure that you are manufacturing products cost-effectively, you are likely going outside of the continent,” Aranda said. 

Her refined methodologywhen working with ventures in low-resource settings with limited access to advanced manufacturing and limited engineering resources—includes location-specific questions, such as: How do you ensure that you design for manufacturability? How do you identify the right manufacturer in sub-Saharan Africa?  

Aranda outlines the thought process: “Building out a [manufacturing] methodology that allows us to ask the right questions, to really pinpoint those issues, those hurdles, and then start to consider where might there be workarounds, or processes, or ways for them to partner, or even approaches that may be transferred from elsewhere that they can leverage for the benefit of their venture.” 

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Editor’s Note: Machine Design's Workers in Science and Engineering (WISE) hub compiles our coverage of gender representation issues affecting the engineering field, in addition to contributions from equity seeking groups and subject matter experts within various subdisciplines.

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