HSSMI was founded in 2012 by Ford, Loughborough University and the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG). The objective of this not for profit business is to bring together academia and industry in collaborative research to improve manufacturing value chains. HSSMI’s growing network of partners includes Ford Motor Company, Jaguar- Land Rover, Autodesk, The Carbon trust, UCL and Case New Holland (CNH). Research is divided into 4 research themes: virtual engineering, circular value chains, resource efficient strategies for urban manufacturing, and manufacture of electric powertrains. HSSMI is currently based in Rainham , Essex, but will be moving to a new facility in Queen Elizabeth Park, Stratford in Autumn 2015. HSSMI has a dedicated team, led by David Stewart, focused on circular economy aspects in manufacturing.
HSSMI is dedicated to advancing circular economy research and supporting the UK’s manufacturing industry move to a circular economy. The group is currently engaged in six separate circular economy projects. These projects are focused around: new remanufacturing models, processes and technologies for future powertrains (e.g. fuel cells, batteries), new business models to support a circular economy, design for remanufacture of existing and next generation products and technologies, design of new equipment and technologies to support end of life recovery processes, development of RFID and ICT systems, and creation of new business tools to help manufacturers adopt circular economy strategies.
HSSMI aspires to become the UK’s leading research institute in supporting manufacturers to deploy and implement new circular economy principles and methods. HSSMI will continue to lead research and commercial projects centred around the industrial ecology aspects of a circular economy. The Institute aims to move past just raising awareness about the circular economy and towards providing technical support around how organisations can actually implement the best practices involved. Intrinsic to this work will be the integration of information management in circular value chains to ensure full transparency of product data over the entire life cycles of products. An area which HSSMI will pioneer is the development of the Remanufacturing Readiness Level Indicator tool which provides a maturity model for identifying an organisation’s readiness to engage in remanufacturing, as well as further highlighting how they can develop their existing capabilities into more advanced practices.