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Sustainable Electric Iron

This project's focus is to redesign an existing household item to be more sustainable in a certain way. With a short period of time, I researched and designed a prototype iron that could possibly be significantly less ecotoxic and just as effective.

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For reference, I bought this Black + Decker electric iron. By disassembling it entirely and logging in data of its materials and weight, I get to analyze what kind of effect and how much effect is it doing to the environment and let me decide how should I improve it. It is obvious at first look that such a cheaply sold iron contained a lot of different parts as it is assembled. Most of these parts although are recyclable, they are not easy to do so. I made a decision to make a version in which the design is much simpler in comparison.


After logging the data, it is apparent that all those parts created a lot of ecological damage, as well as human health damage. This is mostly because it is manufactured in a factory that is convenient to us humans, but disastrous towards the environment as massive amount of carbon dioxide are emitted.


To understand how iron works, I researched and studied the mechanics of it. conventionally, it uses a bimetallic strip that is connected to a copper coil which is powered by a cord from a electric source. It is very efficient as heat is always transferred to the coil, but it also means a lot of unnecessary energy is produced, emitting more carbon dioxide. To avoid that, I decided to change the method it is powered.

Instead of a corded wire plugged into a typical outlet, I decided to use batteries instead. To be specific, lithium batteries. It is just as efficient, although it provides limited energy. However, it is also rechargeable, so one only needs to charge it after use to prepare for the next use. This way, we can contain the number of carbon emission. 

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To prove that my redesigned iron is actually sustainable, I logged in the data for my design as well. It is apparent  that my design does not take as much energy to manufacture nor does it emit as much carbon dioxide. The number decreased from 69 mPts to 0.358 mPts. I would say in terms of ecological effects, it is much more sustainable.

Final redesigned iron

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