Sustainable automotive technology

Friday, 23, October, 2015

The Life Cycle Engineering (LCE) is a methodology for the assessment of the environmental and economical impact of products, usually considering their whole life cycle: production, use phase and end of life. The analysis is conducted taking into account technical boundaries (technical feasibility).

The LCE is structured by Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and Life Cycle Costing (LCC), devoted to the respectively of the environmental impact assessment and the economical impact assessment.

Even if for some people this will look quite strange, the Motorsport sector is one of the most advanced sector in the sustainability and environmental awareness. This is why the continue research of performance and efficiency in engineering terms means continuous looking for fuel consumption reduction and use of advanced and often precious and expensive materials that should be 100% recycled or reused at the end of life. A proof of that is the fact the winning cars in the Le Mans Series, probably the best bench for innovation, are the most advanced hybrid cars even conceived and made on the Earth. Same is the F1.

In D4S Motorsport we are deeply convinced about the strategic advantage we are giving to our products through specific sustainability methodologies and analysis. We have experience on sustainability analysis since 1995.

We would spend a couple of words concerning the capability to conduct a serious LC analysis. One of the key phase to carry out a correct LC analysis is the “interpretation of the results”, where the industrial experience and technical background of the engineers are still playing the main role. Without the correct sensitivity that only trained personnel from well established industries, that grew their experience in years of tests and experiments, success and failures, it is not possible to carry out a sustainability analysis in the most effective and serious way. So even if you have the best software available in the market, but you don’t know deeply the process you are analyzing, it is quite hard you will get serious results. It is exactly the same situation of having a state of the art FEM software and trying to design a racecar or an airplane without having ever done it before. The result will have high probability to be a disaster.

This is why we consider LCA and LCC analysis a serious matter and we are constantly improving our experiences and skills with a daily comparison between numerical and experimental results.