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See detailGlucose production: influence of the datasets choice on LCA results
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Belboom, Sandra ULg; Léonard, Angélique ULg

Poster (2016, September 22)

The aim of this study is to have a good understanding of the environmental impact of glucose production. Glucose is generally produced from corn or wheat. Since agricultural processes are known to be ... [more ▼]

The aim of this study is to have a good understanding of the environmental impact of glucose production. Glucose is generally produced from corn or wheat. Since agricultural processes are known to be difficult to evaluate by LCA, the results obtained with two different LCA databases, Gabi and EcoInvent, are compared in this work. The production of glucose from raw materials can be divided in two steps: the agricultural step allowing the plant production, and the conversion step including the extraction of the starch from the plant and its hydrolysis into glucose. Preliminary results underline the high impact of the agricultural step, so a special attention has been paid to these data. Specific Belgian data collected by the Walloon Agricultural Research Centre (CRA-W) (2014) [1] have been used as primary data (yield, amount of fertilizers, etc.), either using EcoInvent or Gabi datasets background data to model fertilizers, diesel consumption, etc. A third model was built using only data available in Ecoinvent for corn and wheat cultures. For the conversion step, literature data have been used along with some industrial data. As few studies are available in the literature concerning starch hydrolysis, the focus has been placed on data validation (mass balance checks, cross-reference information, etc.). Based on these multiple sources, it is possible to compare the LCA results for the production of 1 kg of glucose for three different cases, summarized in the following table. Table 1: Summary of modelled cases Agricultural step Conversion steps Primary data Dataset Primary data Dataset Case 1 Belgian GaBi Literature + Industry GaBi Case 2 Belgian Ecoinvent Literature + Industry Ecoinvent Case 2 Ecoinvent Literature + Industry Ecoinvent The results obtained using these three models will be presented, at both the inventory and impact assessment steps. They show significant differences and highlight the need to understand in depth the involved assumptions when developing the datasets, in addition to the ones adopted for the inventory. [less ▲]

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See detailEnvironmental impact assessment of bio-based binders: from production to industrial applications
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Belboom, Sandra ULg; Briard, Vincent et al

Poster (2015, October 15)

A binder is used to hold together the fibers forming the mineral wool products (see figure 1). These fibers can be produced from sand and recycled glass for glass wool products (see figure 2) or from rock ... [more ▼]

A binder is used to hold together the fibers forming the mineral wool products (see figure 1). These fibers can be produced from sand and recycled glass for glass wool products (see figure 2) or from rock (volcanic rock, typically basalt or dolomite) for stone wool products. Traditionally, the binders used in mineral wool products are based on phenol-formaldehyde. Due to sanitary and environmental considerations and increased focus on indoor air quality, the producers developed new alternative binders. Especially, Knauf Insulation, a worldwide building insulation manufacturer, developed a binder based on plant starch and called ECOSE. In addition of not using added phenol-formaldehyde , this new binder is also supposed to reduce the environmental impacts of Knauf Insulation mineral wools. Moreover, due to its properties, others applications are now considered for ECOSE such as composite wood panels [1]. The aim of this study is to determine the environmental impact of ECOSE and to compare it with more traditional binders using Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology. LCA analyzes the environmental aspects and potential impacts associated with all the stages of a product's life. In this type of environmental assessment the energy and material flows for the entire life-cycle are surveyed and analyzed with special attention to possible environmental hazards or human health problems. The ISO 14040 and 14044 norms [2, 3] provide the general guidance for performing an LCA. The LCA methodology is first applied to ECOSE main component: glucose. The presentation will present results for glucose production from cereals starches After that, first ECOSE application, glass mineral wool products will be presented in details, including production process (see figure 3). The modelling of the glass mineral wool production process in LCA software GaBi 6 [4] is then described. One of the model specificity is that it allows to perform LCA of any glass wool products produced in Knauf Insulation plants in Europe. The adaptations to the model to allow studying former glass wool product when using phenol-formaldehyde binders will also be presented such as the advantages of this model. Moreover, preliminary results about ECOSE and phenol-formaldehyde glass wool products are explained. Références [1] Knauf Insulation. [cited 2014; Available from: http://www.knaufinsulation.ua/en. [2] ISO 14044, Environmental management - Life cycle assessment - Requirements and guidelines. 2006. [3] ISO 14040, Environmental management - Life cycle assessment - Principles and framework. 2006. [4] LBP, University of Stuttgart, and PE INTERNATIONAL AG, GaBI 6. 2012: Leinfelden-Echterdingen. p. GaBi 6: Software and database for life cycle engineering. [less ▲]

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See detailModeling of a glass mineral wool process in view of Life Cycle Analysis
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Briard, Vincent; Léonard, Angélique ULg

in Matériaux et Techniques (2014), 102(502),

In line with the growing concern about the environmental impact of materials in the building sector, Knauf Insulation, a glass wool producer, is performing environmental impact assessment of its products ... [more ▼]

In line with the growing concern about the environmental impact of materials in the building sector, Knauf Insulation, a glass wool producer, is performing environmental impact assessment of its products through LCA. Knauf Insulation has several glass wool factories in Europe that produce various products, and for a specific market, the same product can be produced in several factories. As the plants that produce glass wool work with similar pathways, a generic model for LCA usable for every plant and every glass wool product has been designed. The general principle of glass wool production is the following: the raw materials, sand, limestone, soda ash, borax, sodium carbonate, as well as recycled off-cuts from the production process, are weighed and mixed. Knauf Insulation also uses a large amount of recycled glass (cullet). The mix is sent to a furnace at high temperature (1350°C). The melted material is then fiberized and the binder is added, a process called forming. Knauf Insulation uses a special binder with ECOSE Technology, a new and formaldehyde-free binder. The wool fibers are collected, by suction, on a conveyor belt, and the mattress then goes through the curing oven. For some products a facing is added. Finally the product is compressed and packed. Specific attention is put in certain LCA aspects, such as allocations procedures, and we have used ISO 14040 and 14044 along with the ILCD handbook as guides during the model development. LCA is performed from raw materials extraction to end-of-life. Nevertheless, the impacts of the insulation system use phase are not included, as they strongly depend on parameters such as construction systems, etc. The functional unit is defined as 1 m3 of specific glass mineral wool product. The model, implemented in GaBi 6, is made as generic as possible by including, for each step, all the raw materials that can be used in one of the factories as well as all the energy sources. Parameters allow to define the amount of each raw material consumed, therefore the model can be adapted to any factory simply by setting these parameters accordingly. Moreover, the transport distances are also parameters and the origin of the energies (electricity or heat) can also be selected. This simplifies the data collection, since the template is the same for all the factories, it can be supported by data collection tools already existing. A part of the model is dedicated to weighting between factories, so a combination of factories can also be studied. This allows to study products sold on a specific market. The model can also be adapted to almost all Knauf Insulation products by using parameters where necessary: for example, several products have different binder contents, so a parameter defines the amount of binder. As some materials can be recycled between several parts of the process, special attention has been paid to recycling loops inside the model. The model is flexible enough to be used for Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) as well as for Eco-Design purposes. [less ▲]

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See detailModeling of a glass mineral wool process in view of Life Cycle Analysis
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Léonard, Angélique ULg; Briard, Vincent

Conference (2014, May 20)

In line with the growing concern about the environmental impact of materials in the building sector, Knauf Insulation, a glass wool producer, is performing environmental impact assessment of its products ... [more ▼]

In line with the growing concern about the environmental impact of materials in the building sector, Knauf Insulation, a glass wool producer, is performing environmental impact assessment of its products through LCA. Knauf Insulation has several glass wool factories in Europe that produce various products, and for a specific market, the same product can be produced in several factories. As the plants that produce glass wool work with similar pathways, a generic model for LCA usable for every plant and every glass wool product has been designed. The general principle of glass wool production is the following: the raw materials, sand, limestone, soda ash, borax, sodium carbonate, as well as recycled off-cuts from the production process, are weighed and mixed. Knauf Insulation also uses a large amount of recycled glass (cullet). The mix is sent to a furnace at high temperature (1350°C). The melted material is then fiberized and the binder is added, a process called forming. Knauf Insulation uses a special binder with ECOSE Technology, a new and formaldehyde-free binder. The wool fibers are collected, by suction, on a conveyor belt, and the mattress then goes through the curing oven. For some products a facing is added. Finally the product is compressed and packed. Specific attention is put in certain LCA aspects, such as allocations procedures, and we have used ISO 14040 and 14044 along with the ILCD handbook as guides dur-ing the model development. LCA is performed from raw materials extraction to end-of-life. Nevertheless, the impacts of the insulation system use phase are not included, as they strongly depend on parameters such as construction systems, etc. The functional unit is defined as 1 m3 of specific glass mineral wool product. The model, implemented in GaBi 6, is made as generic as possible by including, for each step, all the raw materials that can be used in one of the factories as well as all the energy sources. Parameters allow to define the amount of each raw material consumed, therefore the model can be adapted to any factory simply by setting these parameters accordingly. Moreover, the transport distances are also parameters and the origin of the energies (electricity or heat) can also be selected. This simplifies the data collection, since the template is the same for all the factories, it can be supported by data collection tools already existing. A part of the model is dedicated to weighting between factories, so a combination of factories can also be studied. This allows to study products sold on a specific market. The model can also be adapted to almost all Knauf Insulation products by using parameters where necessary: for example, several products have different binder contents, so a parameter defines the amount of binder. As some materials can be recycled between several parts of the process, special attention has been paid to recycling loops inside the model. The model is flexible enough to be used for Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) as well as for Eco-Design purposes. [less ▲]

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See detailModeling of a glass mineral wool process in view of Life Cycle Analysis
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Léonard, Angélique ULg; Briard, Vincent

Poster (2014, May 12)

In line with the growing concern about the environmental impact of materials in the building sector, Knauf Insulation, a glass wool producer, is performing environmental impact assessment of its products ... [more ▼]

In line with the growing concern about the environmental impact of materials in the building sector, Knauf Insulation, a glass wool producer, is performing environmental impact assessment of its products through LCA. Knauf Insulation has several glass wool factories in Europe that produce various products, and for a specific market, the same product can be produced in several factories. As the plants that produce glass wool work with similar pathways, a generic model for LCA usable for every plant and every glass wool product has been designed. Moreover, combination of different factories is also possible. The general principle of glass wool production is the following: the raw materials, sand, limestone, soda ash, borax, sodium carbonate, as well as recycled off-cuts from the production process, are weighed and mixed. Knauf Insulation also uses a large amount of recycled glass (cullet). The mix is sent to a furnace at high temperature (1350°C). The melted material is then fiberized and the binder is added, a process called forming. Knauf Insulation uses a special binder with ECOSE Technology, a new and formaldehyde-free binder. The wool fibers are collected, by suction, on a conveyor belt, and the mattress then goes through the curing oven. For some product a facing is added. Finally the product is compressed and packed. The model, implemented in GaBi 6, is made as generic as possible by including, for each step, all the raw materials that can be used in one of the factories as well as all the energy sources. Parameters allow to define the amount of each raw material consumed, therefore the model can be adapted to any factory simply by setting these parameters accordingly. This also simplifies the data collection, since the template is the same for all the factories, it can be supported by data collection tools already existing. A part of the model is dedicated to weighting between factories, so a combination of factories can also be studied. The model can also be adapted to almost all Knauf Insulation products by using parameters where necessary: for example, several products have different binder contents, so a parameter defines the amount of binder. As some materials can be recycled between several parts of the process, special attention has been paid to recycling loops inside the model. The model is flexible enough to be used for Environmental Product Declaration (EPD) as well as for Eco-Design purposes. [less ▲]

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See detailLife Cycle Analysis (LCA) of photovoltaic panels: A review
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Belboom, Sandra ULg; Léonard, Angélique ULg

in Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews (2014), 38

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See detailUse of Life Cycle Assessment to support in the Eco-Design of a glass-wool process
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Renzoni, Roberto ULg; Briard, Vincent et al

Poster (2013, November 15)

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See detailUse of Life Cycle Assessment in view of Eco-Design for a glass wool process
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Renzoni, Roberto ULg; Briard, Vincent et al

Conference (2013, April 25)

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See detailACV et Ecoconception: illustration de la démarche au sein de Knauf Insulation.
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Briard, Vincent; Léonard, Angélique ULg

Conference (2013, March 22)

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See detailUse of Life Cycle Assesment to determine the environmental impact of thermochemical conversion routes of lignocellulosic biomass: state of the art.
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Léonard, Angélique ULg

Poster (2012, November 07)

Abstract: The biomass is a promising way to substitute fossil fuels. Lignocellulosic biomass valorisation is part of second generation technologies. They are interesting in that they imply less ... [more ▼]

Abstract: The biomass is a promising way to substitute fossil fuels. Lignocellulosic biomass valorisation is part of second generation technologies. They are interesting in that they imply less competition with food crops for land and water, and they allow for the whole plant to be processed. Moreover, lignocellulose is abundant in cheap and non-food materials extracted from plants such as wood and energy crops. The thermo-chemical route is being considered more extensively, especially the gasification process. This process converts carbonaceous biomass into combustible gases (CO, H2, CO2, CH4, and impurities) called syngas in the presence of a suitable oxidant. The syngas can be converted into a large range of products, such as diesel, via a Fischer-Tropsch process, or methanol, used for producing DME (dimethyl ether), both of which can serve as fuels in traditional motors. Syngas can also be used to produce ethylene and propylene, two building blocks for the chemical industry. Production of these four compounds is specifically investigated. In order to insure that, under the principle of sustainability, the use of lignocellulosic biomass is a viable alternative, its environmental impact must be accurately quantified. The Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology will be used in this regard for the gasification process. The gasification technology will be described, and a state of the art in LCA of the gasification process will be presented. Finally, the need for new research will be established. [less ▲]

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See detailUse of Life Cycle Assessment to determine the environmental impact of thermochemical conversion routes of lignocellulosic biomass: state of the art
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Léonard, Angélique ULg

in LCA conference 2012 - Proceeding of the 2nd international conference on life cycle approaches (2012, November 07)

The biomass is a promising way to substitute fossil fuels. Lignocellulosic biomass valorisation is part of second generation technologies. They are interesting in that they imply less competition with ... [more ▼]

The biomass is a promising way to substitute fossil fuels. Lignocellulosic biomass valorisation is part of second generation technologies. They are interesting in that they imply less competition with food crops for land and water, and they allow for the whole plant to be processed. Moreover, lignocellulose is abundant in cheap and non-food materials extracted from plants such as wood and energy crops. The thermo-chemical route is being considered more extensively, especially the gasification process. This process converts carbonaceous biomass into combustible gases (CO, H2, CO2, CH4, and impurities) called syngas in the presence of a suitable oxidant. The syngas can be converted into a large range of products, such as diesel, via a Fischer-Tropsch process, or methanol, used for producing DME (dimethyl ether), both of which can serve as fuels in traditional motors. Syngas can also be used to produce ethylene and propylene, two building blocks for the chemical industry. Production of these four compounds is specifically investigated. In order to insure that, under the principle of sustainability, the use of lignocellulosic biomass is a viable alternative, its environmental impact must be accurately quantified. The Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology will be used in this regard for the gasification process. The gasification technology will be described, and a state of the art in LCA of the gasification process will be presented. Finally, the need for new research will be established. [less ▲]

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See detailMODELING OF A GLASS WOOL PROCESS IN VIEW OF LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT (L.C.A.)
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Renzoni, Roberto ULg; Briard, Vincent et al

Poster (2012, November)

Taking into account the environmental aspects in the building sector has become unavoidable. In France, environmental and sanitary statements for building products (“Fiches de Déclarations ... [more ▼]

Taking into account the environmental aspects in the building sector has become unavoidable. In France, environmental and sanitary statements for building products (“Fiches de Déclarations Environnementales et Sanitaires” (FDE&S)) have been developed. The environmental part of the statement is based on Life Cycle Assessment. So, KnaufInsulation, glass wool producer for the French market, has started to evaluated the environmental impacts of it process in view of FDE&S realization. The process has been modeling in GaBi with industrial data. Adjustable parameters have been introduced to allow to study the environmental impacts of almost all the KnaufInsulation products. So the FDE&S can be easily done for the different products. This model is also used for eco-conception. The LCA results allow to show the life cycle leaks. More, in modifying the model, the impact of a change in the process on its environmental performances will be highlighted. So relevant improvement will be brought out. The model and the mains results as the eco-conception strategy will be presented. The interest of making a modeling based on the step and process of the life cycle of a product or a product range will be clearly understood. [less ▲]

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See detailMODELING OF A GLASS WOOL PROCESS IN VIEW OF LIFE CYCLE ASSESSMENT (L.C.A.)
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Renzoni, Roberto ULg; Briard, Vincent et al

in LCA conference 2012 - Proceeding of the 2nd international conference on life cycle approaches (2012, November)

Taking into account the environmental aspects in the building sector has become unavoidable. In France, environmental and sanitary statements for building products (“Fiches de Déclarations ... [more ▼]

Taking into account the environmental aspects in the building sector has become unavoidable. In France, environmental and sanitary statements for building products (“Fiches de Déclarations Environnementales et Sanitaires” (FDE&S)) have been developed. The environmental part of the statement is based on Life Cycle Assessment. So, KnaufInsulation, glass wool producer for the French market, has started to evaluated the environmental impacts of it process in view of FDE&S realization. The process has been modeling in GaBi with industrial data. Adjustable parameters have been introduced to allow to study the environmental impacts of almost all the KnaufInsulation products. So the FDE&S can be easily done for the different products. This model is also used for eco-conception. The LCA results allow to show the life cycle leaks. More, in modifying the model, the impact of a change in the process on its environmental performances will be highlighted. So relevant improvement will be brought out. The model and the mains results as the eco-conception strategy will be presented. The interest of making a modeling based on the step and process of the life cycle of a product or a product range will be clearly understood. [less ▲]

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See detailThermochemical conversion routes of lignocellulosic biomass
Gerbinet, Saïcha ULg; Léonard, Angélique ULg

Conference (2012, August 28)

The thermo-chemical route, especially the gasification process is considered. This process converts carbonaceous biomass into combustible gas (CO, H2, CO2, CH4 and impurities) called syngas and this ... [more ▼]

The thermo-chemical route, especially the gasification process is considered. This process converts carbonaceous biomass into combustible gas (CO, H2, CO2, CH4 and impurities) called syngas and this syngas can be converted into a large range of products. Production of four of these compounds is specifically investigated: ethylene, propylene, diesel and DME. Diesel can be produced via a Fischer-Tropsch process, whereas DME (dimethyl ether) can be obtained directly or from methanol which is obtained from syngas. DME and diesel can serve as fuels in traditional motors. Syngas can also be used to produce ethylene and propylene, two building blocks for the chemical industry. An important bibliography study has been done to understand these processes in order to evaluate their environmental impacts. The Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology will be used in this regard. A bibliography study on the LCA articles published in this filled has been performed and it appears that few studies have yet focused on the environmental impacts of the gasification process and production of biofuels. Most of the time, they do not use the LCA methodology or they do not take into account land use change impact and are only “well-to-tank” studies. Moreover, it seems that the production of building blocks for the chemical industry has never been investigated. During the next stages of this work, the best conversion routes of lignocellulosic biomass, in an environmental sense, will be determined. Gasification will also be compared with the fossil sector and the results will be checked by sensitivity and uncertainty analyses. The economic aspect will also be taken into account, for the better process, in an environmental view. So, the results of the full study will be a decision making tool for the industries involved in biomass valorisation and for governments. [less ▲]

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