ENHANCING SUSTAINABLE PROCESS DESIGNS THROUGH STRATEGIC MATERIAL UTILIZATION AND WASTE MINIMIZATION APPROACHES
Ph.D. Doctor of Philosophy
Henry M. Rowan College of Engineering
US Army Research Laboratory, National Science Foundation, US EPA
Joseph F. Stanzione, III, Ph.D. and Kirti M. Yenkie, Ph.D.
Committee Member 1
C. Stewart Slater, Ph.D.
Committee Member 2
Heriberto Cabezas, Ph.D.
Committee Member 3
Gerardo J. Ruiz-Mercado, Ph.D.
Circular Economy, End-of-Life Management, Polymer Synthesis, Process System Engineering, Sustainability
Sustainable design; Green chemistry
Sustainability is a growing concern as resources are continually depleted for various applications without adequate renewal plans. The resulting impacts on the ecosystem, health, and resource circularity are often overlooked. This research analyzes improvement opportunities at each major stage in a product's life cycle. Raw material acquisition, product synthesis, process waste management, and the fate of a material in the end-of-life phases were examined. The viability of utilizing renewable resources has been demonstrated in this work by extracting bio-based chemicals from underutilized renewable resources at a commercial scale and transforming the extracted resources into polymeric materials. The optimization of raw material acquisition and process waste management have been accomplished via a superstructure-based approach that is modeled as MINLP optimization problem. Even though process sustainability can be achieved with strategic usage of renewable resources and recovery, the fate of post-consumer materials also poses major concerns regarding releases and emissions if left unmitigated. The guidelines surrounding the manufacturing and end-of-life phases of a material introduced in this work, backed by experimental and computational findings, can be used to effectively design environmentally conscious processes, inventions, and materials without sacrificing costs.
Chea, John David, "ENHANCING SUSTAINABLE PROCESS DESIGNS THROUGH STRATEGIC MATERIAL UTILIZATION AND WASTE MINIMIZATION APPROACHES" (2023). Theses and Dissertations. 3078.