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Life cycle assessment of future electric and hybrid vehicles: A cradle-to-grave systems engineering approach

Tagliaferri, C; Evangelisti, S; Acconcia, F; Domenech, T; Ekins, P; Barletta, D; Lettieri, P; (2016) Life cycle assessment of future electric and hybrid vehicles: A cradle-to-grave systems engineering approach. Chemical Engineering Research and Design , 112 pp. 298-309. 10.1016/j.cherd.2016.07.003. Green open access

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Abstract

Electric mobility is playing an important and growing role in the context of sustainable transport sector development. This study presents the life cycle assessment of an electric car based on the technology of Lithium-ion battery (BEV) for Europe and compares it to an internal combustion engine vehicle (ICEV). According to a cradle-to-grave approach, manufacturing, use and disposal phases of both vehicles have been included in the assessment in order to identify the hot spots of the entire life cycles. For electric vehicles two manufacturing inventories have been analysed and different vehicle disposal pathways have also been considered. Furthermore, the environmental performances of hybrid vehicles have been analysed based on the life cycle models of the BEV and ICEV. The results of the hot spot analysis showed that the BEV manufacturing phase determined the highest environmental burdens mainly in the toxicity categories as a result of the use of metals in the battery pack. However, the greenhouse gas emissions associated with the BEV use phase were shown to be half than those recorded for the ICEV use phase. The trend of the results has also been investigated for future energy mixes: the electricity and diesel mixes for the year 2050 have been considered for the modelling of the use phase of BEV and ICEV.

Type: Article
Title: Life cycle assessment of future electric and hybrid vehicles: A cradle-to-grave systems engineering approach
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.cherd.2016.07.003
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.cherd.2016.07.003
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2016 Institution of Chemical Engineers. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/
Keywords: Science & Technology, Technology, Engineering, Chemical, Engineering, Life cycle assessment of electric vehicles, Electric battery disposal, Future energy scenarios, Greenhouse-gas Emissions, Plug-in Hybrid, Lithium-ion, Batteries, Impact
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Chemical Engineering
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1503806
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