2020 Energy Transitions & Economics - Elsa Olivetti
Global demand for materials is immense and rapidly growing; extraction and processing of materials accounts for more than one-third of global carbon flows for human-related activities, on the order of 5.5 Gigatons/year. Direct materials production represents approximately 7% of total US energy consumption. This talk will describe the development of analytical and computational tools that consider the economic and environmental impacts of design, systems, and process choices relevant to materials use. The speaker will describe approaches to assessing the environmental and economic impact of materials and processes as early in their development as possible. The work described leverages information along the development trajectory including data mining of literature about laboratory synthesis, creating techno-economic models of protyping and scaled manufacturing as well as assessing macroeconomic implications on materials markets particularly for the case of substitution and shifts in recycling. The presentation will also describe an example on beneficial use of industrial byproducts in the built environment.