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G.EN.ESI - software platform which is being realized through the development of a set of new tools that provide streamlined environmental assessment
Acronym G.EN.ESI
Abstract G.EN.ESI is a software platform which is being realized through the development of a set of new tools that provide streamlined environmental assessment and eco-design decision support throughout the design development process.
Large_Description The project aims at developing a software engineering platform, called G.EN.ESI for eco-design and product sustainability of electronic and mechatronic products. G.EN.ESI is realized through a set of new tools that support designers� choices from an environmental point of view. Every tool has a different aim and it carry out the analysis of a single phase. In particular, there is a tool assessing the materials analysis, one that undertake the transport phase, one that analyze the use phase and one that is in charge of managing the end of life treatments. In addition there is a tool that helps the designer taking decisions in order to realize a sustainable product, and two more tools which respectively carry out a very simple and primary environmental assessment and a complete and standardized LCA analysis. These tools allow to evaluate technical solutions in the early design phases and their impact on the whole product life cycle. The platform is the physical implementation of a eco-design methodology that aims at three objectives: speed, diffusion, and usability. Firstly it allows a rapid environmental assessment of design choices since the early stages of conception and design. Secondly, it promotes both the diffusion of the principles and instruments of the eco-design and their usability in technical design departments. That is possible through the simplification of analysis technologies and their integration with traditional tools used in the process of product development. The industrial field of reference, where the methodology and the tools are tested, regards small and large appliances. In terms of environmental impact all the phases of product life cycle (from production to disposal) are important and the parameters to be controlled at design time are several. Materials, processes, assembly methods, packaging, transport systems, geographical location of use and disassembly methods are just some of the elements that should be considered. However, for this kind of product, called �energy-intensive� products, it is possible to claim, before running an LCA analysis, that the most relevant phase, concerning environmental impacts, is the use phase. This statement, does not imply that other phases (materials, end of life) neither are negligible nor have little room for improvement.
location Europe
start_date 01/02/2012
end_date 01/02/2015
IPR There is a consortium agreement in order to preserve IPR.
achievements List of deliverables:
State of the art of eco-design tools applicability in different product design stages; Eco-design drivers for mechatronic products to be estimated during product design activities; G.EN.ESI methodology definition; Determination of use scenario for G.EN.ESI platform; Specifications and design of G.EN.ESI eco-design software platform; Quality assurance plan and manual; First scientific assessment and quality reports; S-LCA analyst software tool; LCC analyst software tool; 0KM software tool; LeanDFD tool and CBR tool software; DFEE software tool; ECO-Material software tool; Second scientific assessment and quality report; G.EN.ESI Software platform description; G.EN.ESI Software platform; G.EN.ESI Software platform user manual; G.EN.ESI web-based interface; Third scientific assessment and quality report; Prototypes of different functional groups designed by G.EN.ESI; Prototype of a complete cooking hood designed by G.EN.ESI; Measurement of reduction of energy, waste of materials, cost, etc.; Usability testing in design departments; Project web site ; Dissemination plan; Dissemination activity report; G.EN.ESI training courses on methodology and case studies; Training activities report; Plan for business use and results exploitation, Exploitation Consortium Agreement (ECA); G.EN.ESI Standards candidates, requirements and state of the art; G.EN.ESI Standards promotion and transfer into upcoming standards; Set-up of project website for project management; First period financial and administrative project report; Final financial and administrative project report.
innovation It is well known early design decisions, during conceptual and embodiment phases, influence 70�80% of the total product cost. Correspondingly, it is possible to hypothesize the same for environmental impacts. That is, whether or not a product is relatively sustainable is largely determined during the early design stage. Due to high levels of uncertainty regarding design embodiments at the early design phase, new methods and tools are essential to provide designers a basis to determine the degree of sustainability of a given product or process. Whereas already affirmed design methods and advanced software tools support designers in their functional, structural, aesthetical choices during the cited design stages, such as Computer Aided X (CAx) systems (i.e. CAD/CAE/CAS), until now no easy to use and robust tools exist for the environmental evaluation. Several eco-design procedures and tools have been developed but they are far from a practical day-by-day application in company engineering departments. The project wants to make up for this lack and develops an eco-design methodology (called G.EN.ESI) and a related software design tool (called G.EN.ESI platform) able to help product designers in ecological design choices, without losing sight of cost and typical practicalities of industry. The objective is to supply a platform completely integrated with the other main design tools (CAD/PLM). The proposed approach will be applied to the household appliance field but it can be easily extended to other mechatronic products. G.EN.ESI software platform aims at integrate eco-design with the traditional design activities. This means that environmental and economic parameters associated to the lifecycle of household appliances can be identified and evaluated during the early design phases together with product functions, shape, dimensions and other features. The analysis of the environmental behavior has to be simple and has to rapidly allow the evaluation of possible alternative design solutions. These alternatives can regard shapes, dimensions, materials to be used, manufacturing processes, means of transport, means of packaging, strategies for the end of life management and many other factors. The software platform will propose a guided process towards eco-design among several design choices based on the different scenarios of product lifecycle. The virtual product model (called virtual prototype) can be automatically updated on the basis of environmental assessment results. In order to verify the advantages of using the G.EN.ESI platform, the project foresees the realization of several functional groups and a household appliance prototype to experimentally measure the results of the choices made with the eco-design platform. The target foreseen for these products is a 30% reduction in global energy use compared to the current situation, and a 50% reduction in industrial waste. Finally, the project scope is also to contribute to the eco-design international standards by suggesting rules and guidelines to manage the design process of eco-sustainable products. Several dissemination and training activities will involve the designers� community in order to create a concrete engineering culture towards the development of �green� products.
Keywords Eco-design, LCA and LCC, Eco-materials, SoftwareTools, Dismantling and Disassembly, Household Appliances
Development_Status Complete
Funding European
Keywords Eco-design, LCA and LCC, Eco-materials, SoftwareTools, Dismantling and Disassembly, Household Appliances
Project_Type INN
Research Unit Name Laboratory Role
LEI LCA ed ecodesign per l’eco-innovazione Home page LEA laboratory (ENVIRONMENT) Scientific/Technical coordinator

Related research topics
Code Topic Description
2.1 LCA-ECODESIGN Life cycle Assessment and Ecodesign

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