Most Manufacturers ‘Spectacularly Inefficient,’ Researchers Find

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — It looks like the greening of manufacturing has a ways to go still: a study from MIT’s Department of Mechanical Engineering has found that newer, high-tech manufacturing systems use anywhere from one-thousand to one-million times the amount of energy per pound of output as more traditional methods.

The study, led by MIT professor Timothy Gutowsky, looked at 20 manufacturing processes, from old-fashioned, heavy-duty industries like a cast-iron foundry to high-tech manufacturers of semiconductors and nanomaterials.

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