plastics, bioplastics, conductive silver ink, life cycle analysis
Electronics and electronic products are increasingly becoming part of life. However electronic product manufacturing involves a number of energy and chemical process steps. Energy use in material extraction for electronic products, chemical use, product manufacturing and end of life are becoming major issues worldwide. Printed circuit board (PCB) technology generates large quantities of hazardous electronic waste which causes environmental and health issues. E-waste is currently increasing rapidly in Australia and electronic manufacturers are adapting environmentally sustainable techniques to reduce the problem. Circuit in Plastic is a new plastic based manufacturing technology which does not use any chemicals during manufacturing, uses few manufacturing steps and at the end of product life all the materials can be fed back into the manufacturing cycle similar to cradle to cradle approach instead of the current cradle to grave scenario. This project investigated the possibility of using either bio plastics or recycled plastics for manufacturing the CiP technology.The aim was to assess the general acceptability, mechanical properties and environmental impacts of recycled plastics and bio plastics in Southeast Queensland through a survey and lifecycle analysis using a life cycle tool. The impact categories considered in the LCA included human health, ecosystem quality and resources.