Seminar 4: Life cycle analysis

Seminar 4 : Location, time, place

Note: The seminars start 15min past the hour. Make sure to be there before that otherwise you will miss the seminar.

Group Date and time Place Mentor
1 Mon, 9 May, 10-12 Teknikringen 14, floor 3, room 22:an Patric
2 Mon, 9 May, 13-15 Meeting room, floor 8, Osquldasv. 10. Elling
3 Tue, 10 May, 13-15 Osquldas väg 10, floor 6, conference room near the coffee room Cristian
4

Wed, 11 May, 10-12

Osquldas väg 10, floor 6, meeting room at the entrance side, not kitchen side Jonas
5 Thu, 12 May, 10-12 Osquldas väg 10, floor 6, meeting room at the entrance side, not kitchen side Dimos
6 Thu, 12 May, 13-15 Meeting room automatic control 6th floor Osquldasv 10. Alexandre

Seminar 4 topic : Life cycle analysis

Background and reading material

Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) is concerned with analysis of the environmental impact of a product or service throughout its whole lifecycle from gathering of the raw materials needed for the product through its disposal. The impact of a product or service naturally differs significantly based on its characteristics, production and usage. Regardless of product and service characteristics, the same LCA approach can be used to assess its environmental impact

An easy introduction to Life Cycle Thinking and Life Cycle Analysis can be found in the two following YouTube clips featuring Leyla Acaroglu

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zXy07D9x0XM

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fGhoInz-VUs

The LCA process has been standardised by the International Standardisation Organisation ISO in its standard ISO 14040:2006To increase the awareness of LCA the United Nations Environmental Program – UNEP, has created a free to use guideline on how to perform Life Cycle Analysis. This guide can be found here:

http://www.unep.org/pdf/UNEP_LifecycleInit_Dec_FINAL.pdf

This guideline present complete LCSA – Life Cycle Sustainability Assessments which includes social (S-LCA) , economic (LCC) and environmental (LCA) analysis techniques. The relation between these three components of a complete LCSA is outlined in section 2.1. The report also provides several Case studies of life cycle studies – feel free to use them as inspiration for your work.

Written reflection

Your task is to perform the first two phases of an Environmental Life Cycle analysis (LCA) for a system specified below. In the Guideline you find the LCA phases described starting from section 2.2. The first two phases are “Goal and Scope definition” and “Life Cycle Inventory”. The first phase involves defining the scope of the system under study. Here you will have to use your engineering skills and judgement to delimit the scope of the study and clearly justify your choices. In the second phase, you will create an inventory of impacts that the system has on the environment, it is sufficient if your work is qualitative at this stage, and describes the principles rather than going into the quantitative measures of impact. In total your LCA should be 800-1000 words and well written.

Suggested systems

We make three suggestions for systems to study. The two first ones represent rather complex systems where you need to use your judgement to delimit the scope of the study more.

  • Wind mill
  • Tesla Model S
  • A charger for a mobile phone (the kind that you plug into the wall to charge your phone and which is typically included when you buy a phone

Submission

  • Write your name at the top of the page. 
  • This exercise is about expressing your own opinion. You should write what you think and not what you think someone wants to read. 
  • Provide a word count at the end of the document (should be >= 800)
  • Save the document in PDF format (there are several free PDF converters available, for example PrimoPDF if your word processing software does not support PDF). 
  • Name your document seminar3-firstname-familyname.pdf and upload it to the corresponding assignment in BILDA (http://bilda.kth.se). 
  • Don't put your person number on the assignment. Use your kth.se address instead to uniquely identify you. The assignments will be distributed to many other students and it is unnecessary to let all of them know you person number.

Before the seminar

Read all the reflecting documents from your group. Make notes of the the most interesting parts in the reflections and be ready to discuss these at the seminar.

During the seminar

Take active part in the discussions! 

If you cannot attend the seminar

If you know in advance that you cannot participate on the seminar, indicate this in the doodle that will be sent out. If you miss a seminar, you need to write a summary report of  1000-1200 words (ca. two pages), reviewing the reflections of the other students in the group.  You need to submit this “reflection over the reflections” before the seminars (see deadline in BILDA). To be acceptable, your reflection on the reflections should make it perfectly clear that you read and reflected on the content of what the others wrote.

  • Name your file seminar4-RoR-firstname-familyname.pdf
  • Provide a word count at the end of the document (should be >=1000)
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