ADSM Technology Explained
Eco-design including Active Disassembly using Smart Materials (ADSM) is a technology that has been developed and investigated since the 1990s. It initiated as a solution towards EU legislations against growing electrical waste products.
The technology incorporates shape memory and smart polymer components into its products. Shape memory materials can be polymers or metal alloys. A shape memory material is manufactured to hold a set shape, until it is taken to a trigger temperature, at which point it adopts a second set shape.
Take for example this “snap-fit” connector made of a shape memory polymer. During assembly of a product, the snap fit-holds the shape shown in Fig 1. When the product needs to be disassembled, it can be heated or cooled (usually) to the trigger temperature. At this point the snap-fit will automatically transform to the shape shown in Fig 2, allowing the component to easily be removed.
Trigger temperatures can be set to a fairly accurate range of values. Other means of triggering the disassembly may be through microwave, infrared, pressure, sound, computer and robotic control, electric current or magnetic fields.
An example of a heat triggering using SMA (NiTi); in collaboration with Nokia Research Centre, Finland: Nokia LCD removal.
The examples above describe only a couple of examples of the variety of technology investigated.