LCA and Process Development: Start Simple, Think Big! | AIChE

LCA and Process Development: Start Simple, Think Big!


Helling, R. K. - Presenter, The Dow Chemical Company
Chemical engineers play a vital role in finding solutions to global challenges through their work on process development projects.  The essential first step is to take a life cycle view of the chemical process, looking beyond the boundaries of the chemical plant at the sources of energy and raw materials, the fate of emissions and wastes, and the potential impacts of the product being produced.    This step can be taken using simple tools and calculations or by conducting a rigorous life cycle assessment (LCA).  An important next step is to put project in the context of global sustainability by considering the possible market-level impacts of the process technology.  The presentation will cover LCA concept, examples of life cycle thinking and LCA applied to process development and the incorporation of market-level estimates of project benefits and tradeoffs.  These help focus efforts on projects and design considerations that most rapidly advance the transition to a sustainable planet and society.


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