InstituteDepartments
Sustainability Assessment

Sustainability Assessment

The main task of our Sustainability Assessment department is to analyze and calculate the environmental and socio-economic impacts of different materials, products, processes and technologies. Our current focus is to assess the environmental impacts along the value chain of the product systems (From cradle to grave) with the help of Life Cycle Assessment (LCA).

LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT (LCA)

The life cycle assessment is an internationally standardized method to calculate the environmental impacts of the product system over its complete lifecycle and is based on the DIN EN ISO 14040 and 14044. This is done with the help of a LCA software GaBi and our department of Sustainability Assessment has access to a wide range of databases that provide the inventory information for conducting LCAs for the product systems beyond our thematic area ‘Plastics’. Combining the energy and material flow models going in and out of the product system in each phase (manufacturing, use and end of life) of its lifecycle with corresponding impact indicators enables us to calculate the environmental impacts like Global Warming Potential (kg CO2 equivalents) for the whole product system along its lifecycle.

DESIGN FOR RECYCLING/ECODESIGN/CIRCULARITY INDICATORS

In the field of plastics and other polymer composites, focus on the assessment of the recycled plastics as well as novel and bioplastics, along with their associated processing technologies is much needed, in order to understand the design of sustainable products out of these materials. In addition, the environmental impacts in the end of life scenarios of all these products are evaluated with the help of Life Cycle Assessment, which will be used to research more on calculating their circularity indicators, Material Circularity Index thereby supporting Ecodesign.

The aim of the department of Sustainability Assessment is to support the design and development of sustainable products and technologies as well as establishing a truly sustainable circular economy.