|About this Abstract
||2017 TMS Annual Meeting & Exhibition
||Advances in Environmental Technologies: Recycling and Sustainability Joint Session
||Development of Open Source Software Tool for Life Cycle Assessment of Rare Earth Elements Production
||Ehsan Vahidi, Praneet S. Arshi, Fu Zhao
|On-Site Speaker (Planned)
A handful of life cycle assessment studies on rare earth elements (REEs) have been published, however, these studies either cover a small portion of the REE life cycle or suffer from data quality and transparency issues. Given the importance of REEs in clean energy technologies, an LCA software tool that is well documented, easily accessible, and open to customization and updates while covering different REEs production pathways is highly desirable. The paper introduces the development of a modularized open source MS Excel based LCA software tool to support environmental performance analysis of REEs production. The software tool is organized in a layered structure with unit processes of input materials and energy used forming the base layer. The subsequent layer combines the environmental impacts (TRACI and ILCD) of these unit processes which form REE production pathways. All unit processes have an XML version that can be imported into commercial LCA software.