Abstract

To understand the past successes and future opportunities for applying Industry 4.0 technologies towards manufacturing sustainability assessment, this state-of-the-art review examines previous literature at the intersection of these domains. Specifically, we focus on the application of Industry 4.0 technologies in the context of the following stages in manufacturing sustainability assessment: (1) planning, infrastructure development, and problem definition (2) performance measurement, (3) results interpretation and decision-making, as well as (4) intervention, control, and validation strategies. Based on this literature review, we present the trends, benefits, research gaps, and required future work for holistically integrating the aforementioned research domains. To accompany this literature review, we performed a meta-analysis of 14,498 articles and compared them to 316 articles compiled for a focused literature search. Based on database-controlled keywords, networks representing keyword co-occurrences were constructed to reveal clusters of related terms and evaluate overall term centrality (i.e., importance). The results of the analysis uncover strikingly similar topologies of the two datasets, yet reveal Industry 4.0-related opportunities for manufacturing sustainability assessment, i.e., clusters of keywords that were more central to the large collection than the targeted search. Open areas of research include automation, robotics, and advanced inspection technologies. Additional investigation is warranted for determining whether the incorporation of such methods (1) facilitate more robust and accessible manufacturing sustainability assessment or (2) make the manufacturing system itself more sustainable.

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