The Engineering of Sport 6 pp 41-46
Life Cycle Assessment and Evaluation of Environmental Impact of Sports Equipment
- Cite this paper as:
- Subic A., Paterson N. (2006) Life Cycle Assessment and Evaluation of Environmental Impact of Sports Equipment. In: Moritz E.F., Haake S. (eds) The Engineering of Sport 6. Springer, New York, NY
Design of sports equipment is primarily performance driven. As a consequence of this approach the sports equipment industry has eagerly adopted new materials and processes over the years that provide the competitive edge but which have unintentionally placed additional burdens on the environment. With the introduction of more rigorous environmental regulations in the developed countries there has been a further shift of manufacturing operations to areas of the world where such policies are more relaxed. There is much evidence that such practices have caused further global environmental degradation. With around 80% of the environmental burden of a product determined during the design stage it is clear that new design practices and tools are required in order to address this problem in a more sustainable way. Environmental concerns need to become a design objective rather than a constraint. This paper discusses the principles and strategies for environmentally sound design of sports equipment and in particular the eco-design approach based on life cycle assessment (LCA). A case study is presented involving comparative environmental life cycle assessment of carbon fibre and glass fibre composite tennis racquets using software EcoScan.
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