Carbon footprint analysis of printed circuit board

Winco K.C. Yung, Subramanian Senthilkannan Muthu, Karpagam Subramanian

Research output: Chapter in book / Conference proceedingChapter in an edited book (as author)Academic researchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


World is faced with the challenge of sustaining rapid technological advancements, economic growth, and simultaneously dealing with the threat of climate change and global warming. Climate change is closely related to the natural resources and the livelihood of people. Hence product carbon footprint (PCF) analysis is very essential to quantify the total amount of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions a product or industry is responsible for, which is also the key toward achieving sustainable production and consumption. In recent years though PCF has received lot of attention, still case studies related to intermediate products that are subcomponents of larger electronic products are hardly carried out. Printed circuit board (PCB) is one such intermediate product used as one of the components in a main electronic equipment that has not been analyzed for its carbon emissions so far. Hence in this work, as an attempt to narrow this gap in this area of research, PCF analysis of a PCB is carried out. The results are summarized and presented for individual life stages of the studied product. A cradle-to-gate analysis covering raw material extraction, manufacturing, and transportation was performed. The results reflected that manufacturing stage contributed more toward GHG emissions, and electricity consumption is the process that contributed most. A sensitivity analysis was done for the significant input data in materials and manufacturing stage (dominant phases that created more carbon emissions) to understand how the choices made in choosing emission factors from different databases influence the final result. PCF analysis of such intermediate products is very essential as it will help in quantifying the carbon emissions of the larger end product comprehensively.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEnvironmental Carbon Footprints
Subtitle of host publicationIndustrial Case Studies
Number of pages67
ISBN (Electronic)9780128128497
ISBN (Print)9780128128503
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017


  • Climate change
  • GHG emissions
  • Global warming
  • Intermediate products
  • Low carbon economy
  • Printed circuit board (PCB)
  • Product carbon footprint

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Engineering(all)
  • Environmental Science(all)


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