Date of Award

Spring 1999

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Computer Science - (M.S.)

Department

Computer and Information Science

First Advisor

Franz J. Kurfess

Second Advisor

Jonathan Linton

Third Advisor

Bruce Kirchhoff

Abstract

A current barrier to the end-of-life product strategies is a lack of knowledge of the quantity and timing of product returns or waste generation. Consequently, a Decision Support System (DSS), to predict the timing and quantity of waste generation is needed. Therefore a web-based system that predicts the rate of product entering the waste-stream has been developed. The system accepts information relating to sales, reliability, storage and disposal behavior. This data is used to simulate the return waste flow. The DSS can be used to simulate the effect of different policies and to provide data for end-of-life and multi-lifecycle strategy formulation. Cathode Ray Tubes (CRTs) are evaluated as a test case.

In the test case, the amount of CRT based color televisions entering the waste-stream is estimated using the Forecasting software. The effects of certain parameters like pre-disposal storage and disposal due to obsolescence of the televisions are computed. Effect of the introduction of televisions using the newer Flat Panel Display technology is also estimated. The effect of a legal ban on the disposal of CRT based televisions in the state of Massachusetts is also modelled.

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