Faculty of Engineering
Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.
This unit provides an introduction to the political, social and environmental background to materials usage. Major technologies relating to the production, sustainable use and recycling of metals, plastics, glass, electronics, paper and ceramic materials are discussed. Various options involving materials substitution, reclamation, energy recovery and disposal are critically evaluated. The unit considers the economics of materials production, as well as 'cradle-to-grave' analyses of materials, including products and byproducts of the nuclear fuel cycle. In particular, it looks at various life-cycle analysis techniques. We will examine the impact of population, affluence and technology changes on population and ecological footprints with the arrival of the current "Anthropocene Era".
At the successful completion of this unit you will be able to:
Two written assignments: 40%
Examination (3 hours): 50%
3 hours lectures/tutorials and 9 hours private study per week
See also Unit timetable information