Modern life increasingly requires newer equipments and more technology. In addition, the fact that society is highly consumerist makes the amount of discarded equipment as well as the amount of waste from the manufacture of new products increase at an alarming rate. Printed circuit boards, which form the basis of the electronics industry, are technological waste of difficult disposal whose recycling is complex and expensive due to the diversity of materials and components and their difficult separation. Currently, printed circuit boards have a fixing problem, which is migrating from traditional Pb-Sn alloys to lead-free alloys without definite choice. This replacement is an attempt to minimize the problem of Pb toxicity, but it does not change the problem of separation of the components for later reuse and/or recycling and leads to other problems, such as temperature rise, delamination, flaws, risks of mechanical shocks and the formation of "whiskers". This article presents a literature review on printed circuit boards, showing their structure and materials, the environmental problem related to the board, some the different alternatives for recycling, and some solutions that are being studied to reduce and/or replace the solder, in order to minimize the impact of solder on the printed circuit boards.
The activity of industrial design is adding tools focused on sustainability to contribute to traditional design methodology. One such tool is the life cycle assessment (LCA) which are several software alternatives and different methods of analysis. The life cycle assessment plays a very important role to understand the best alternatives of selecting of materials and processes in a product. Confronting with consumer activity, with an estimated useful life of the product increasingly short, reflect on the selection of materials and processes appropriate to each project through the LCA provides a powerful tool to support the project, making it essential when talking about sustainability. In this manuscript intend to reflect on the material selection in product life cycle, exploring an analysis tool life cycle in two types of products with low technological complexity, "squeeze bottle" and "lamp". Through exercises in disciplines of sustainability in design courses show up different analyzes for the same type of product, reflecting on the choice of materials and processes these. It was used for the analysis of life cycle of assessment the software CES EduPack with Eco Audit Tool. Students become stimulated to study more stiffness the correct selection of materials in the design phase, covering all stages of the life cycle of these products, which allowed students to visualize more clearly the necessity to have a systemic view of the entire life cycle of this product. The results show the complexity and importance of proper selection of materials and processes for sustainability.
There is a big waste generation nowadays due to the growing demand for innovation and the fact that more and more products have a reduced lifetime, increasing the volume of dumps and landfills. Currently, one of the segments of large volume is the technology waste, which reflects on the printed circuit boards (PCBs) that are the basis of the electronics industry. This type of waste disposal is difficult, given that recycling is complex and expensive, because of the diversity of existing materials and components, and their difficult separation process. Regarding the material involved in PCBs, there are metal fractions (MFs) and non-metallic fractions (NMFs), of which the recycling of NMFs is one of the most important and difficult processes, because they amount to about 70% of the weight of the PCB’s waste. In the present paper, a literature review of the recycling of non-metallic fractions (NMFs) has been carried out, showing different studies and guidelines regarding this type of recycling, emphasizing that this type of waste still lacks for further application.