Reusable and recyclable flexible/rigid floor. Life cycle analysis and improvement options


Comparative environmental assessment study between Versaflex reusable and recyclable pavements ans conventional porcelain stoneware pavements in the life cycle between the extraction of raw materials and spilled/recycling of waste.


General data

Client: Interface Europe Ltd / Ceramics: Versaflex system, consisting of porcelain stoneware tiles on polypropylene mesh and flexible joint in thermoplastic elastomer SEBS) and conventional system, consisting of porcelain stoneware tiles on cement mortar / state mortar seat layer of the work: finalised, with technical report delivered.


Work done

Life cycle analysis (LCA) summarized as cradle to tomb or reuse/recycle. Main indicators used: manufacturing energy, CO2 emissions from manufacturing, installation water, solid waste and environmental toxicity. Includes: summary LCA design, determination of pavement removal/reuse scenarios according to market standards for commercial surfaces, collection and/or preparation of technical-environmental data, diagnosis and analysis of the existing situation and future production hypotheses of Versaflex, comparison with the conventional system, determination of improvement options for the reduction of impacts and simulation of results with improvements incorporated in the manufacturing process.


Results obtained

The behavior of Versaflex system could be characterised and compared with the conventional system in different scenarios of partial, medium or total reuse (Versaflex) and of waste removal and waste (conventional). Significant savings of impacts were found in the first of the systems, which increase as the reuse of materials planned in the different scenarios grows, over periods of use of 6 years and within a life cycle of 50 years.


Estudios ambientales, R&D