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Hi all,

I`m about to model electronic devices composed of electronic components which themselves consist of various raw materials. I use manufacturer/country-specific as well as generally defined production/market processes. Since I want to model quite a few similar electronic components, I`d like to reduce work and facilitate reuse of process definitions as far as possible.

Conceptually, a kind of inheritance mechanism would be best: The composition of raw material in a component of type X (say, a multi-layer ceramic capacitor =MLCC) is equal for most of the vendors (say, MuRata, which don`t provide specifications on their MLCCs), but the supply/provider of raw material (say, nickel within a MLCC) is different.

Therefore, using the examples given, I`d like to have 1) an openLCA Process for a general MLCC with raw material inputs, 2) a Process for a MuRata MLCC inheriting from 1) but with MuRata-specific provider for nickel. Currently, the only solution I can think of using openLCA is copying 1) to 2) and change the input providers. Doing it many times for different other vendors will result in quite a (errornous) maintenance effort in case 1) later changes. Using parameters may help a bit, but only for the input amounts, I guess.

As far as I understand, ecoinvent v3 has this kind of inheritance built-in, and since there`s an openLCA port of ecoinvent database, I wonder how to realize an inheritance pattern using openLCA.

Do you have any suggestions, examples, or documentation on this?

Best,
Sebastian
in openLCA by

1 Answer

0 votes
by (38k points)
Hi Sebastian,
good question - the ecoinvent inheritance is, to my knowledge, not implemented in any LCA software. A workaround is to parameterise a process provider (implementing many providers and input products and setting only one of the flows to values different from 0) or to change the provider in the model graph in a product system.
Best wishes,
Andreas
by (38k points)
Hi Sebastian,
Indeed we have now finally implemented, in 1.6.3, the `save product system LCI result as system process` feature, see screenshots. openLCA 1.6.3 is already released btw. To your remaining question: You are right, openLCA takes one process as provider, the product name and unit needs to fit; if no `default provider` is specified, just one that fits is selected. This can be changed in the model of course.
Best wishes
Andreas
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