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I am brand new to using OpenLCA and I am trying to build my own database in order to complete my dissertation for University, which is looking at the materials used within a hydrogen fuel cell. I have found the raw materials involved, for example the composition of raw materials used in stainless steel. when I create Stainless Steel as a flow and add in the raw materials form elementary flows > resource > in ground, will this give the emissions for the extraction of those raw materials, or do I have to add these manually to the outputs section? 

When I get to the calculation stage it is just stating the amounts of each used and giving me no extra information on the environmental impacts, this is using the ecoinvent LCIA methods, I am struggling to get my head around how to use this software and the resources online seem incredibly limited.

Any help is greatly appreciated. 

in openLCA by (120 points)
by (120 points)

I ended up manually recreating the process in excel by researching the CO2e values for each material at each stage. Meaning that i didn't end up using OpenLCA in the end. The results of my study can be seen here: https://www.mdpi.com/1996-1073/14/11/3079

1 Answer

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by (114k points)

"the resources online seem incredibly limited."

Hm, I don't know. You could check the openLCA handbook (https://www.openlca.org/learning/) and the full case studies we have now (https://nexus.openlca.org/casestudies), e.g..

Elementary flows do not contain any emissions for processing them, they are just inputs from, outputs to nature, and you need to create a process to address these efforts (and thereby the environmental impacts). This is however basic LCA methodology and not linked to any software. And you typically need an LCIA method to calculate environmental impacts (or precisely, potential environmental impacts).

Best wishes,