Round five of the Cradle to Cradle Product Design Challenge has come to a close. Organized by the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute, these circular design challenges encourage professional and student designers worldwide to develop viable solutions for everyday products that also experiment with Cradle to Cradle sustainable product design principles. As part of six circular design challenges continuing into 2018, the latest competition reeled in 94 entries from 141 designers in 17 countries.
The five winning projects include a chair that anyone can build from a sheet of material, a 100 percent recyclable shaving razor, and a an adaptable, biodegradable wall for workspaces. The fifth challenge also introduced the first winner of the new Best Use of Cradle to Cradle Certified Materials category. Read on for more about the winning projects.
Best Student Project & Best Use of Aluminum: MyEcoWall by Caterina Vianna & Ferran Gesa - EINA, University School of Design and Art, Barcelona, Spain
Project description: “Today’s workspaces need to be safe and versatile, creating a comfortable atmosphere for employees and allowing the redefinition and adaptation of workspace settings as companies evolve. However, companies often generate a lot of waste through changes to layout, work routines, and furniture as surplus items often end up going to landfill. MyEcoWall, uses component materials (Ecovative’s MycoFoam & MycoBoard, wool and cork) that are biodegradable yet durable, enabling companies the flexibility to adapt retool, relocate, grow or reduce size. MyEcoWall can be purchased or leased, and each piece of the product is replaceable, eliminating the concept of waste and increasing recyclability: the parts made with aluminum can be remanufactured or recycled, and the parts made from biological materials are reusable as compost, thus returning them to the soil as a nutrient.”
Best Professional Project: Plano Chair by Brandes en Murs - Utrecht, Netherlands
Project description: “Inspired by origami, where a uniform flat material is transformed into a complex paper structure, Brandes en Meurs designers Michiel Meurs & Paddy Milford — with support from Mariska Hilhorst, Renee Emmerik, and Thijs Barentsen — developed a chair that anyone can form from a given rectangular sheet of material. The resulting Plano Chair is made from one single sheet of recycled and fully recyclable polypropylene material. Durable living hinges allow the sheet to take its final shape, and a single material type makes production and material reclamation easy.”
Best Student Use of Autodesk Fusion 360: S(h)aving the World Personal Razor by RIT Engineers for a Sustainable World - Rochester, NY
Project description: “According to the EPA, close to two billion razors end up in landfills each year, largely due to the difficulty and danger associated with recycling the small stainless steel blades. In addition, disposable razors waste an incredible amount of water during consumer use. Led by Daniel Rouleau and Morgan Mistysyn, Rochester Institute of Technology’s (RIT) Engineers for a Sustainable World (ESW) used Cradle to Cradle product design principles to create a 100% recyclable razor that performs at the same standards as non-recyclable counterparts and requires less water during use. The team demonstrated adept use of Autodesk Fusion 360’s direct and parametric modeling, shape optimization capabilities, which enabled the 9-person team to collaborate on multiple parts simultaneously to design for disassembly, minimize material waste, and maximize overall efficiency.”
Best Professional Use of Autodesk Fusion 360: LOOP Supply Medusa Spool by Bartłomiej Gaczorek, Custom Shapes, Poland
Project description: “The rapid and continuous growth of 3D printing has significant impacts on materials, production, distribution, and waste. Most of the materials for low-budget and consumer-level 3D printers are supplied in form of polymer wire coiled on spools, which are heavy, bulky, and are rarely — if ever — recycled. Designer Bartłomiej Gaczorek developed Loop Supply Medusa Spool using Autodesk Fusion 360 to demonstrate an innovative approach to using t-splines for the design, and simulation to assess the strengths of the overall model. Made from BASF’s ecoflex®, the single-material spool is up to 80% lighter compared to conventional spools. The spool is also designed to foldable, thereby taking up less space, and can be easier to return to the supplier for reuse, or can be biodegraded.”
Best Use of Cradle to Cradle Certified Materials: Scout Rain Jacket by Alexandria Jones, Jordan Jones, Natalie Ouma and Melissa Shuford - SCAD, Savannah, GA
Project description: “The apparel industry continues to be one of the largest generators of waste, making innovation in clothing design an essential component of positively transforming the way garments are made and used. One contributing factor is sizing, especially for children’s clothing, which is often used only for a short period of time and therefore requires continual replacement of clothing. The Scout Rain Jacket provides a solution to this. Adjustable vertically and horizontally, the Scout Rain Jacket extends product life and reduces waste by growing ‘with’ the child and also allowing multiple owners. To ensure optimum material health and reuse scenarios, the team referenced materials from the Fashion Positive Materials Collection and specified Natura Sewing Yarn, and DyStar Textile Dyes.”
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