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Contribution to the emergy theory : application to recycling

Abstract : The continuous development of tools to measure sustainability led to the eMergy theory. The Emergy of a resource or product is defined by converting all resource (raw materials) and energy inputs in the form of solar energy equivalents (solar energy unit, seJ), cf Odum (1996, 2000). The main objective of this thesis is to adapt the method of emergy evaluation to industrial recycling practices. The principal scientific contribution from the study can be summarized as: contribution to th eMergy theory in discrete time applied to recycling. Under certain assumptions, the emergy of a recycled product can be expressed in the form of a geometric series. If the emergy of a product deteriorates, there is a cost to the emergy of recycling with similarities to the Carnot principle. As a result, a ‘factor’ is introduced which could be included on emergy evaluation tables to reflect increases in transformity due to multiple recycling. Fi nally, the developed approach is successfully applied to the use of recycle materials in a Low Energy Building.
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Nana Yaw Amponsah. Contribution to the emergy theory : application to recycling. Chemical and Process Engineering. Ecole des Mines de Nantes, 2011. English. ⟨NNT : 2011EMNA0002⟩. ⟨tel-00653840⟩

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