SolidWorks just updated their Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) tool, SustainabilityXpress, now available for download (along with a tutorial). It’s designed to work specifically with SolidWorks 2009.
Though a series of tabs and drop-down windows, SustainabilityXpress lets you pick your material, production site, manufacturing method, and where it will be used. The environmental impact of your choices are calculated and displayed in four categories: carbon, energy, air, and water.
One nify feature is the Find Similar Material:
Material selection is an important contributor to determining the environmental impact of a design. It is also important in all other aspects of design. That is why SustainabilityXpress includes Find Similar. It allows you to quickly and easily search the built-in material database for close alternatives to your current material. Even if you don’t do sustainable design, this is a handy utility for everyone.