Proceedings of the 2007 Industrial Engineering Research Conference

Designing for Technology Obsolescence Management

Peter Sandborn
CALCE, Department of Mechanical Engineering
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742


Many types of products that have to be manufactured and supported for long periods of time lack control over critical parts of their supply chain, e.g., avionics, telecom infrastructure, and industrial controls. As a result, the components and technologies that these products depend on become obsolete long before the product's field life (and sometimes even manufacturing life) ends. Obsolescence management, which is an inevitability for these products, should be considered during product design and when planning for life cycle sustainment. This paper addresses forecasting obsolescence and other strategic planning methods to minimize future obsolescence impact.

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