Conceptualizing emissions of chemicals from products - foundations of a modelling approach
Conference poster, 2011
The research reported here is approaching the task of conceptually linking chemicals in products to their occurrence in environmental samples building on earlier work applying the concepts of substance and material flow analysis and bridging that modelling with chemical diffusive mass-transfer models. The bridging of these concepts is possible using the “combined nomenclature”(CN) and concepts such as total stock, total product area and mean composition of materials in the surface of products.
The process of conceptual modelling used builds on principles used in design of information systems in multidomain user settings. A conceptual model of the information i.e. the nomenclatures, terminologies and categorisations of concepts and terms, has been identified through workshops with researchers, a references group and a literature study.
The aim of the model is to cover the processes that lead to emissions from environmental relevant processes of products along the entire “life-cycle”. The core concepts of the technical system are “product” and “use”. The “product” concept hence includes any physical product not limited to a specific category. Each product consists of one or several components, which in turn are made of one or several materials, which consists of one or several chemicals. Different types of properties and descriptions are related to each of the levels of physical representation from product category (CN-categories) to chemical level.
The “use” concept is describing an episode during the “life-time” of a given product. The amount of chemical substances emitted from a product depends on the type of use, the length of time it is used in this particular way and the ambient conditions in the direct vicinity where use takes place. The use concept is thus very wide and encompasses the different stages of a product lifecycle which require a thorough definition of “use types” and ambient conditions.
A further specification of concepts has been done, covering around 20 concepts and their further relations and connections to data and data sources useful for calculations will be presented.