1997-02-24

Mercury Switches in Underhood and Trunk Lamp Applications: A Detailed Environmental and Economic Analysis of Alternatives 970698

The largest application of mercury in automotive applications occurs in underhood and trunk lamp activation switches. A reduction of mercury in this application will have a significant impact on automotive mercury usage. Using environmentally conscious design and manufacturing principles, this paper will investigate functional alternatives for the activation of underhood (U/H) and trunk lamp applications.
Five alternatives to perform the activation function will be analyzed in four areas over their life cycles:
  • Environmental
  • Economic
  • Engineering
  • Manufacturing
Each alternative will be ranked on criteria in each of these four areas using documented LCA processes. Totals will be generated for each area, then weighted and added to arrive at an overall score. Four groups of weightings will be used based on the vehicle type: small cars, mid-size cars, large/luxury cars, and trucks. The alternative with the highest score for each vehicle type will be recommended as the best alternative for that vehicle when all factors are included.

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