Innovative Approaches to Sustainable Process and Product Design

Sammons, N. E. Jr., Auburn University
Mosier, N., Purdue University

With growing awareness towards consumption of limited resources and preservation of the environment for present and future generations, a need exists for increased focus on sustainable engineering design and practices in order to facilitate a shift towards renewable products and ecologically friendly processes.Fossil-fuel based products and processes may be optimized in a sustainable fashion by either decreasing the usage of non-renewable feedstocks or replacing those feedstocks with renewable resources facilitated by emerging bio-based technologies. Consumption of water and energy in chemical processes is also a key issue that can be addressed through smarter design methodologies that include mass and energy integration and systems analysis. Environmental impact assessment tools such as life cycle analysis and other accepted methodologies would then provide a metric by which the sustainability of innovative processes could be measured.



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