Eurocopter, SME partners introduce new eco-design tool
Sept. 25, 2013, Marignane, Fra. - Together with its SME and research partners, Eurocopter celebrates today the completion of the development of a groundbreaking eco-design tool at its industrial site in Marignane (Bouches-du-Rhône, France).
By Carey Fredericks
The result of a collaborative project involving purchaser and suppliers, the new tool will allow the various stakeholders in the industrial chain to significantly enhance the environmental performance of their products.
With the support of the European Union’s LIFE+ Program, Eurocopter decided in 2009 to launch the CORINE project, which seeks to reduce the environmental impact of its products throughout the supply chain by supplying SME partners with a simple, innovative and collaborative eco-design tool. A consortium was set up and brought together the European manufacturer Eurocopter, five SMEs (Bonnans.sa, Carbone Forgé, Expiris, REXIAA and Solution F), a company specializing in the development of environmentally friendly IT solutions (EcoMundo), the Regional Center for the Development of Advanced Materials (CARMA), its Italian counterpart LCE, and the Université du Var ISITV TVT.
Having worked together for nearly four years, the consortium has reached its objective of providing SMEs with an innovative tool that is easy to use and offers a range of eco-design options. Designed for the aerospace industry but adaptable to related sectors, the tool can also be used in wider-ranging environmental studies and in research projects.
“The challenge facing us was to provide a group of different SMEs with a simple tool adapted to their needs,” said Director of Eurocopter’s French Sites Gérard Goninet. “Bringing our partner subcontractors in on the development of the tool right from the start of the project has enabled us to embrace the highly creative ideas they came up with, to share their experiences, and to get a better grasp of some of the constraints they face.”
One of CORINE’s environmental objectives is to help reduce volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions, hazardous waste, energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions—particularly of carbon dioxide—throughout the supply chain.
In developing the necessary software, the consortium sought the assistance of EcoMundo. To prove the software’s effectiveness, technology demonstrators were created by the project’s industrial partners using benchmark materials and processes and their alternatives.