Future of sustainable design
With natural resources fast dwindling and global warming rising alarmingly, the governments, industries, and even consumers are turning their focus on sustainability, which is defined as a "method of harvesting or using a resource so that it is not depleted or permanently damaged".
A major part of earth's resources are used for producing and using industrial, commercial, and consumer products. Every product consumes resources – primarily, power, fuel, and water – throughout its lifetime, right from the time of its manufacturing to usage to disposal and to recycling. And about 80% of carbon footprint – simply put, all types of pollution, generated by a product in its lifetime, and environmental impact, is determined at the stage of a product's design.
In this background, there is a lot of demand for engineers to design products that create less environmental impact. To help engineers think in a sustainable manner, the newer versions of many Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) tools are equipped to:
- Assess environmental impact of materials
- Simplify selection of right materials
- Identify substitutes for energy intensive materials
- Perform upfront product lifecycle assessment
- Assess eco impact of products
Industries have also realized that sustainable design helps them cut down production cost, delivery cost, packaging cost, and disposable cost and earn profit.
However, there is an urgent need for institutions to educate and train engineers in sustainable thinking- to measure and analyse environmental impact. At CADD Centre, we have been taking proactive measures to create awareness about sustainable thinking among engineering students, and train them in sustainable designing using PLM tools, thus enabling them to secure future "green" jobs.
All our Master Diploma courses give training in soft skills such as team collaboration, and project management skills, as driving sustainable initiatives in an organizational setup typically requires engineers to communicate their ideas across different business departments, and enlist their cooperation. In this resource section, we publish articles to update you on key sustainable design concepts such as whole systems and lifecycle thinking, improving product lifetime, energy efficient design, eco-materials, and net-zero energy buildings.