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UNIVERSITY TRANSILVANIA OF BRASOV

FACULTY OF PRODUCT DESIGN AND ENVIRONMENT

PRODUCT DESIGN FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT AND ENVIRONMENT PROTECTION

ECODESIGN

PROJECT GUIDE
Student NAME

Student GROUP

Supervisor NAME
Transylvania University of Brasov Programm: Industrial design
Department of Product design, Mechatronics and Environment Academic year 2016-2017

Subject: Ecodesign and product recycling

Project subject

Analyze the environmental impact of an industrial product, by using the Ecoindicator EI99 databases and
propose an improved solution of the product.

Proposed References
Bârsan, A., Bârsan, L. Ecodesign for sustainable development. Volume 1. Fundamentals. Transilvania
University of Brasov Press, ISBN 978-973-598-104-4, Brasov, 2007.

Wimmer, W. Ecodesign for sustainable development. Volume 4. Product development. Transilvania


University of Brasov Press, ISBN 978-973-598-107-4, Brasov, 2007
www.pre.nl

www.ecodesign.at

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PRODUCT ANALYSIS

Introducing the product -

1.1. Product name and functions

The product we choose for our study is a coffee maker.

The function of the coffee maker is to produce the coffee by the infusion of the cold water brought to
boiling temperature and its simultaneous filtering, with the coffee powder.

Functional decomposition – The function structure:

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Identification of the weak points of the product design and of any harm and danger in case of
malfunction or abuse.

The product presents the danger of overcharging and short-circuit in case the voltage supplied and
frequency does not correspond to those listed in the product specification.

To prevent the danger of electric shock is recommended not to put cord, or coffee maker in water or
other liquids.

Before using the coffee maker, make sure the tank is completely closed. Do not try to open the tank as
long as there is pressure inside it, you may cause seriously skin burnings.

Do not use the coffee maker on, or near the stove or other appliances that generate heat, it can affect
the material the coffee maker is made of, and thus, its good functionality.
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1.3. Brief description of the product

Producing and using scenario

The product is manufactured and assembled in China. From there, the product is transported by boat and
truck to Brasov, where it is used.

It is used twice a day, for producing 800ml of coffee (beverage). The coffee is kept hot for 30 minutes each
day. The product useful life – life span – is three years. The product uses electric power, the specification
shows a value of 120W.

The acquisition price is 45.0 RON Coffee maker weights 1330g

Component
Material
Technologies
Mass
Production
Processing
Transport,Use
End of life

name

[g]
indicator
indicator
indicator
indicator

Housing1
HDPE
Injection
140

molding

Housing2
HDPE
Injection
120
molding

Housing3
HDPE
Injection
160

molding

Housing4
HDPE
Injection
45

molding

Housing5
HDPE
Injection
20
molding

Bottom
HDPE
Injection
50

molding

Hot plate
Steel
Stamping
90

Resistance
Alloy steel
Cold rolling
75
Bracket
Aluminum
Rolling
15

Stamping

Wires
Copper
Cold rolling
120

PVC
Extrusion

Filter
Paper
Rolling
10
Stamping

Dropper
PP
Injection
25

molding

Flexible
PVC
Hot
25

pipes

extrusion

Fitting
Rubber
Molding
10
Caps
HDPE
Injection
10

molding

Screws
Aluminum
Rolling
10

Springs
Steel
Extrusion
5
Glass jug
Glass
Blow
400

molding

The above table should also present the recyclability options for each material/component.

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Coffee Maker Disassembly:

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H

e
Final Disassembly:

Glass Jug

sorting

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MODELLING THE LIFECYCLE OF THE PRODUCT

2.1. General qualitative description of the different life cycle stages of the coffee maker

Obtaining/producing the raw materials

Most coffee maker parts are built from plastic, including the body and the basket which holds the filter.
The base plate, warmer plate, and heating unit are built from various metals, usually steel (alloy, or not)
or anodized aluminum. The carafe is built from heat-proof glass. Other parts include timers, switches,
and wiring.

Manufacture

The parts for the coffee maker are usually produced by specialized factories.

The plastic parts are produced at a plastics company, and the metal parts at a metal stamping plant.
Switches are purchased from companies that produce these items. The manufacture of the actual
coffee maker consists of putting all these parts together.

Production technology: mainly injection molding, rolling, stamping.


Production waste: packaging of external parts, sprue bushes of injection molding.

Transport

Packaging: cardboard and foam blow molded


Transportation: plane, truck, car, rail.

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Product use

Usability: filtering the coffee powder with the hot water, obtaining the soluble coffee, cleaning Energy
consumption: 40-80 Wh
Generated waste: rest of the coffee powder that didn’t mixed with the water, paper filter
Noise and vibrations: not harmful noises during the filtering process

Maintenance: washing all the detachable parts with hot soapy water, rinse and dry before filling to
place; descale the coffee maker regularly, add proper descaling remedy available at the market to the
water tank, do not fill the filter with ground coffee.

Reparability: parts can’t be changed in case of damage, no spare parts available, except for the glass jug.

End of life

Fasteners and joints type: connectors, threaded assembly


Time for disassembly: it is required 30 minutes for disassembly

Rate of reusability: the glass jug can be still reused after checking it for cracks
Rate of recyclability: aproximatively 60%

Coffee powder and water is needed for the use life cycle stage

Paper filters are required each time the product is used


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Coffee powder
Explanation
Origin
Brazil, Vietnam, Indonesia, Colombia, Mexico
Transportation
From Brazil: via ship over 10000 km

From Indonesia: via ship about 5264 nautical miles


Roasting
The roasting process influences the taste of the beverage by

changing the coffee bean both physically and chemically. The

bean decreases in weight as moisture is lost and increases in

volume, causing it to become less dense. The density of the bean

also influences the strength of the coffee and requirements for

packaging.
Storage
Once roasted, coffee beans must be stored properly to preserve

the fresh taste of the bean. Ideally, the container must be airtight

and kept cool. In order of importance, air, moisture, heat, and

light are the environmental factors responsible for deteriorating

flavor in coffee beans.

Folded-over bags, a common way consumers often purchase

coffee, are generally not ideal for long-term storage because they

allow air to enter. A better package contains a one-way valve,

which prevents air from entering.


Preparation
Hot water drips onto coffee grounds held in a coffee filter made

of paper or perforated metal, allowing the water to seep through


the ground coffee while absorbing its oils and essences. Gravity

causes the liquid to pass into a carafe or pot while the used

coffee grounds are retained in the filter. In a percolator, boiling

water is forced into a chamber above a filter by steam pressure

created by boiling. The water then passes downward through the

grounds due to gravity, repeating the process until shut off by an

internal timer or, more commonly, a thermostat that turns off the

heater when the entire pot reaches a certain temperature. This

thermostat also serves to keep the coffee warm (it turns on when

the pot cools), but requires the removal of the basket holding the

grounds after the initial brewing to avoid additional brewing as

the pot reheats.

The maximum amount of water needed for one use is 1000 ml,

and the amount of coffee is about 8-10 teaspoons (approx. 100g).

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2.2. Materials and technology for the product.

Decomposing the product into its component parts

• the water tank made of plastic (heat resistant), marked with gradations for measuring the quantity of
water placed in it. It is mounted on a stand, also plastic, under which works an electric hob cable (made of
steel) connected to the heat source.

filtering device, which is composed of two parts: the filter itself, made of plastic fibers with very fine mesh,
as well as the stand that supports it and which is also made of plastic resistant to heat;

coffee maker (the vessel where the ready-made coffee is stored) is built from the heat resistant glass and
located just below the filter on standing device, which is also constructed of plastic resistant to heat.

Steps in manufacture process

Injection molding

• The plastic parts for coffee makers are designed by the manufacturer and then outsourced to specialty
plastics companies. The plastics company uses the manufacturer's design to make a mold. Then parts are
produced by injection molding; heated plastic is forced into the mold under pressure, cooled, and released.
These parts are then shipped to the manufacturer for assembly.

Stamping

• The metal base plate is made at a specialized metal stamping plant. A sheet of metal is rolled out, and
heavy machines punch out the specified shape. Then these are shipped to the manufacturer.

Assembly

• The parts of the coffee maker are put together on an assembly line. The electrical components are
assembled first. These are designed so they can be simply snapped together. Workers standing at the
assembly line each snap in a part as it comes to them, and the whole line may have 40 to 80 workers, each
doing a specialized job. The metal warmer plate is snapped on, and then the thermostat is wired. The
heater for the warmer plate is assembled, then placed on a small pallet about the size of an index card. The
pallets are placed on a conveyor belt that carries them through a sonic welding machine. This automatically
welds the wiring for the heater. Once the internal wiring is complete, the rest of the pieces—the housing
and the filter reservoir—are snapped together. Some pieces may be screwed in by workers using pneumatic
screw drivers.

Packaging

• After assembly, workers place the coffee makers in small cartons. Then workers place these cartons in
larger packing cartons which might contain several units. These may be taped shut by hand, or they may be
taped automatically by passing on a conveyor belt through a taping machine. Typically, another machine
automatically imprints a bar code on the packing box, for tracking information. Then the boxes are stacked
on large pallets and shipped or stored in a warehouse.

Quality Control

When the outsourced parts arrive at the coffee maker manufacturer, a receiving inspector checks them. Any
defective parts are weeded out before they are taken to the assembly line. Then there may be several points
along the assembly line where random pieces are removed and inspected. Typically, a
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hundred piece audit is done at the end of the assembly process. One hundred units are taken at random as
they come off the assembly line, and these are thoroughly checked for internal and extemal defects.

2.3. Transport and distribution and use scenarios.

The coffee maker is produced in China.


The transportation from China was performed with a freighter ship and then by truck.

The use scenarios take into consideration how many times a day it is used, what amount of coffee we want
to produce and also, if, during the use stage were respected all the use instructions accordingly.

2.4. Which are the product’s end-of-life options?

If it can be recycled or not, which parts can be recycled or reuse, which parts go to the landfill of
incineration.

Short review about what recycling means

Recovery and reprocessing of waste materials for use in new products. The basic phases in recycling are the
collection of waste materials, their processing or manufacture into new products, and the purchase of
those products, which may then themselves be recycled.

Typical materials that are recycled include iron and steel scrap, aluminum cans, glass bottles, paper, wood,
and plastics. The materials reused in recycling serve as substitutes for raw materials obtained from such
increasingly scarce natural resources as petroleum, natural gas, coal, mineral ores, and trees. Recycling can
help reduce the quantities of solid waste deposited in landfills, which have become increasingly expensive.
Recycling also reduces the pollution of air, water, and land resulting from waste disposal.

There are two broad types of recycling operations: internal and external. Internal recycling is the reuse in a
manufacturing process of materials that are a waste product of that process. Internal recycling is common
in the metals industry, for example. The manufacture of copper tubing results in a certain amount of waste
in the form of tube ends and trimmings; this material is re-melted and re-cast. Another form of internal
recycling is seen in the distilling industry, in which, after the distillation, spent grain mash is dried and
processed into an edible foodstuff for cattle.

External recycling is the reclaiming of materials from a product that has been worn out or rendered
obsolete. An example of external recycling is the collection of old newspapers and magazines for re-pulping
and their manufacture into new paper products. Aluminum cans and glass bottles are other examples of
everyday objects that are externally recycled on a wide scale. These materials can be collected by any of
three main methods: buy-back centers, which purchase waste materials that have been sorted and brought
in by consumers; drop-off centers, where consumers can deposit waste materials but are not paid for them;
and curbside collection, in which homes and businesses sort their waste materials and deposit them by the
curb for collection by a central agency.

Society’s choice of whether and how much to recycle depends basically on economic factors. Conditions of
affluence and cheap raw materials encourage human beings’ tendency to simply discard used materials.
Recycling becomes economically attractive when the cost of reprocessing waste or recycled material is less
than the cost of processing new raw materials.

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1. Recycling the metallic parts of the coffer maker: the hot plate (steel), resistor (alloy steel) and the clamp
(aluminum)

Ferrous products (i.e., iron and steel) can be recycled by both internal and external methods. Some
internal-recycling methods are obvious. Metal cuttings or imperfect products are recycled by re-melting,
recasting, and redrawing entirely within the steel mill. The process is much cheaper than producing new
metal from the basic ore. Most iron and steel manufacturers produce their own coke. By-products from the
coke oven include many organic compounds, hydrogen sulfide, and ammonia. The organic

compounds are purified and sold. The ammonia is sold as an aqueous solution or combined with sulfuric
acid to form ammonium sulfate, which is subsequently dried and sold as fertilizer.

In the ferrous-metals industry there are also many applications of external recycling. Scrap steel makes up a
significant percentage of the feed to electric-arc and basic-oxygen furnaces. The scrap comes from a variety
of manufacturing operations that use steel as a basic material and from discarded or obsolete goods made
from iron and steel.

2. Recycling the plastics parts of the coffee maker: the housing parts

Plastic containers and other household products are increasingly recycled, and, like paper, these must be
sorted at the source before processing. Various thermoplastics may be remelted and reformed into new
products; the most widely recycled types are polyethylene, polypropylene, polystyrene, and polyvinyl
chloride. Thermoplastics must be sorted by type before they can be remelted. Thermosetting plastics such
as polyurethane and epoxy resins, by contrast, cannot be remelted; these are usually ground or shredded
for use as fillers or insulating materials. So-called biodegradable plastics include starches that degrade upon
exposure to sunlight

(photodegradation), but a fine plastic residue remains and the degradable additives preclude recycling of
these products.

3. Recycling the glass parts of the coffee maker: the glass jug

Glass is an easily salvageable material, but one that is difficult to recover economically. Though enormous
numbers of glass containers are used throughout the world, much of this glass is still not recycled, because
the raw materials are so inexpensive that there isn’t an economic motive to reuse them. Even those glass
containers that are returned by consumers in their original form sooner or later

become damaged or broken. One problem in recycling glass is separating it from other refuse. Another
problem is that waste glass must be separated by colour (i.e., clear, green, and brown) before it can be
reused to make new glass containers. Despite these difficulties, anywhere from 35 to 90 percent cullet
(broken or refuse glass) is currently used in new-glass production, depending on the country.

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2.5. General and specific environmental parameters

General environmental parameters


Name of the product
Coffee maker

Weight of the product


1330 g

Weight of the product


1630 g

including packaging

Measures
Height: 40 cm

Volumetric capacity
800 ml

Components
Housing
535 g

Metallic parts
180 g

Wires
120 g

Peripheral units 1
70 g

Peripheral units 2
25 g

Glass jug
400 g
External parts
Cables, Packaging

Use scenario
Use scenario: making 5 cups of coffee twice a day, 14

times a week, 62 times a month, 728 times a year

over 3 years

Life time
3 years

Functionality
The hot water drips onto coffee grounds held in a

coffee filter made of paper or perforated metal,

allowing the water to seep through the ground coffee

while absorbing its oils and essences. Gravitation

causes the liquid to pass into a carafe or pot while the

used coffee grounds are retained in the filter. In a

percolator, boiling water is forced into a chamber

above a filter by steam pressure created by boiling. The

water then passes downward through the grounds due

to gravity, repeating the process until shut off by an

internal timer or, more commonly, a thermostat that

turns off the heater when the entire pot reaches a

certain temperature.
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II. THE ANALYSIS OF THE ECOLOGICAL IMPACT BY USING THE ECO-

INDICATOR 99

The life cycle of the product:

The values reflecting the components environmental impact can be obtain from the evaluation
instrument (in this case Ecoindicator EI99) and can be processed using different software (Microsoft
Excel, …, EcoIT etc.).
In this example, the EcoIT software was used.

Based on the previously presented scenario, the software gives us the following results:

0.12 kW

The impact is presented for the whole life cycle, and then, for the life cycle stages, separately
(production, use, disposal – see the above picture).

Above, the corresponding graphs are presented. On the right side, the impact values expressed in
points [Pt]/millipoints [mPt] are presented.
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The next panel represents the cumulated impact for materials obtaining and processing.

Usually, the impact should be calculated separately for these 2 stages, but EcoIT99 puts them together.
First, the components are introduced (e.g. housing), then on separate line the material, mass, unit,
number (e.g. HDPE, 535, g/m
3
/etc, number of similar components). On the last column, the impact SCORE will be automatically
calculated. The score can be displayed as values in points or as graph (like in the pictures below).

The housing has the most important impact in the production+processing stage.

The results can be presented as a graph for visualize the differences of impact between the
components.
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For the cable unit, the resistor has the most important impact.

For the wires production, the most important element is the PVC housing.

At the use chart, the greatest impact resulted to be the transport by truck.
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For the end-of-use stage, the structure from Figure 1 of EI99 booklet should be followed. According to
that, Municipal waste should be 100%. Municipal (not recycled) + Recycled should be also 100%, and
the sum of Incineration and Landfill should be equal to Municipal. What is not recycled goes to
Municipal waste and there is sorted what can be burned for energy recovering. What remains is
landfilled.

Conclusion:

From the above charts results that the use stage has the greatest impact in the product life cycle.
Therefore, the focus will be on this stage. However, other solutions should be explored.
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III. IDENTIFYING THE IMPROVEMENT STRATEGIES OF THE
ECOLOGICAL IMPACT USING ECODESIGN PILOT ASSISTANT

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IV. IMPROVING THE DESIGN: ECODESIGN

S13. USE STAGE: REDUCING CONSUMPTION

Materials: in the use stage is very improbable to reduce the environmental impact as long
as the materials used are the main ingredients (coffee powder and water) for obtaining
coffee as beverage. People use as much water and coffee as they intend to drink.
Periodically, a descaling process must be performed, using specific substances for this; they
cannot be reduced as this conditions the product life span. It is possible to replace the
paper filters with a permanent one, produced from metal or plastics.

Energy: Indicate the energy consumption to the user: the product has a label on which
some specifications are presented; the product power, supply voltage, or intensity should
be on that list; also, the capacity of the boiler (in liters). The last one can be shown to the
consumer by a transparent scale on one side of the water recipient, or by a scale on the
jug. The necessary energy for producing the coffee can be reduced only by changing the
working principle for the product function of water heating.

Energy: Consuming a reduced amount of energy per service unit. Reducing the electric
energy needed for keeping the coffee hot by replacing the glass jug with a thermos flask,
which retains better and for a longer time the heat. Also it can be introduced an automatic
turn off when the process is complete.

S10. OPTIMIZING PRODUCT FUNCTIONALITY

To be reliable and to fulfill its functions without failure: by using “Failure Mode and Effect
Analysis” (FMEA) to evaluate and improve the reliability of the product; also using the best
possible materials and technologies during manufacturing and with a reduced
environmental impact.

S15. IMPROVING MAINTENANCE

The design should allow an easy and fast assembly / disassembly.

High quality components.

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V. THE NEW DESIGN

Transparent indicator of the water level

Improving solutions:
Transparent indicator of the water level

Thermos jug/flask

Automatic turn off when the process is complete

Removable hob

Permanent filter

Permanent filter

Thermos jug

Removable hob
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VI. THE ANALYSIS OF THE ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT FOR THE NEW
DESIGN USING THE ECOINDICATOR EI99

The improvements previously discussed and on which the new design is based on, should
be analyzed. The results of this analysis should be compared with those of the initial
analysis performed for the existing product.

NEW Design

Old Design
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