Expert View

Defining Sustainment for Engineered Systems—A Technology and Systems View

[+] Author and Article Information
Peter Sandborn

Center for Advanced Life Cycle Engineering,
A. James Clark College of Engineering,
University of Maryland,
College Park, MD 20742

William Lucyshyn

Center for Logistics Collaboration,
School of Public Policy,
University of Maryland,
College Park, MD 20742

1Wikipedia provides an index of “sustainability articles” with over 350 alphabetized topics all of which are in the socio-ecological sustainable development realm. Not a single topic included in the Wikipedia index addresses technology-oriented sustainability. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Index_of_sustainability_articles

Manuscript received April 15, 2018; final manuscript received September 3, 2018; published online December 24, 2018. Editor: Y. Lawrence Yao.

J. Manuf. Sci. Eng 141(2), 024701 (Dec 24, 2018) (4 pages) Paper No: MANU-18-1237; doi: 10.1115/1.4041424 History: Received April 15, 2018; Revised September 03, 2018

Sustainment and sustainability are concepts that have pervaded recent engineering culture. Although the popular media often associates sustainability with environmental and socio-ecological constructs, it is a widely used and understood concept with application to many technology, system, and business areas that extend beyond a socio-ecological context. This paper discusses the usage of the term sustainment, proposes a general definition of sustainment that conflates ecological, social, political, economic and technological interests, and provides recommendations that broaden the perspective.

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