New Theory of Green Thinking in Product Design

Abstract: Green design is a hot issue in the study of modern design technology in recent years, and more and more green products have emerged in the market. However, the true meaning of green is not very clear. This article makes a concrete analysis of the meaning and content of the green design thinking, and combines the green thinking in product design with the humanized design thinking and expands the meaning of green design.
Keywords: green product, green design, humanized design

0 Preface

In recent years, the terms green design, green products, green food, green industry, and so on have become familiar to all industries. Green has also become one of the characteristics of the product era. Beijing 2008 Olympic Games also put forward the slogan of the Green Olympics. No matter what the product is, as long as it is linked with the green, it will be able to reborn and be invincible in the competition. This wave of green consumption can be said to have been for a long time, but what is the true meaning of this green product seems to have been ignored and obscured by people.

1 The meaning and content of existing green design

1.1 The meaning of green design

There are many green meanings, such as symbolizing life, peace, spring, nature, security, nature, environmental protection, ideals, and so on. What we call green food is the meaning of natural and safe (non-toxic). What is the meaning of green in green products? At present, green in green products mostly refers to environmental protection and energy conservation. This is also a general understanding of green products. However, this kind of green understanding is incomplete and imperfect. The meaning of green is a question worthy of our consideration, and it will also affect the principle of the application of green thinking in our product design.

First, we review the history of green design and the meaning of green design.

The earliest development of green design ideas was in the 1960s, when American design theorist Victor Papanek emphasized design in his "Design for the real world." We should seriously consider the use of limited earth resources and serve to protect the environment of the earth. At that time, it also caused great controversy. Later, with the development of science and technology and the continuous improvement of human material civilization and spiritual civilization, human beings realized that the environment for survival has been deteriorating, the available resources have become increasingly depleted, and the further development of the economy has been severely constrained. These problems directly affect human civilization. The reproduction of the project thus proposes a sustainable development strategy. In the late 1980s, the first wave of “green consumption” was started in the United States, which then swept the world. Green refrigerators, green TVs, green computers and other green products continue to emerge, and consumers are increasingly advocating green products. Green design became a hot issue in the study of modern design technology in the 1990s.

There are many definitions of green design. Here we quote the definition in Green Design: Green Design Also known as Ecological Design, Design for Environment, and Environment Conscious Design. Throughout the product's life cycle, the product's environmental attributes (removability, recyclability, maintainability, reusability, etc.) are taken into account as the design goals, while ensuring that the product should have The function, service life, quality and other requirements [1]. The principle of green design is recognized as the "3R" principle, namely Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, to reduce environmental pollution, reduce energy consumption, recycle recycling or reuse of products and components.

1.2 Content in Green Design:

The contents of the green design include many, and there are different applications in the product design, economic analysis, production, management, etc. Here, we focus on the content of the design phase for analysis.

1) Green Material Selection and Management Green material refers to materials that are renewable, recyclable, and environmentally friendly with low energy consumption. Therefore, we should choose materials and components with good environmental compatibility in our design, and avoid the use of toxic, hazardous, and radiation-emitting materials. The materials used should be easily reusable, recycled, remanufactured or easily degraded to increase resource utilization and achieve sustainable development. In addition, the types of materials should also be minimized in order to reduce the cost of recycling after product disposal.

2) Product Recyclability Design The design of recyclability is to fully consider the problem of recycling and reuse of the product after it is scrapped. It means that it should not only facilitate the detachment and separation of parts, but also make it repeatable. The used parts and materials are fully valued in the designed products. Recycling and reuse of resources are the main goals of recycling design. There are generally two approaches to this, namely the recycling of raw materials and the reuse of spare parts. Due to the difficulty and high cost of material recycling, the more reasonable way to recover resources is to reuse components.

3) Assembling and disassembling product design In order to reduce the cost of assembly and disassembly of the product, we must adopt the simplest structure and appearance as far as possible to meet functional requirements and application requirements. less. And with an easy-to-remove connection method, the number of fasteners at the removal site is as small as possible.

4) Product packaging design The green packaging of products mainly includes the following principles: (1) The most provincial material, that is, the green packaging has the least material to use, under the functional conditions of protection, convenience, sales, and provision of information. Moderate packaging of civilization. (2) Try to use packaging materials that are recyclable or easily degradable and that are not toxic to the human body. For example, paper packaging can be easily recycled and reused. It is also easy to decompose naturally in nature and does not pollute the environment. Thus, on the whole, paper packaging is an environmentally friendly packaging. (3) Easy to recycle and recycle. Use packaging that can be recycled, reused, and recycled to increase the life cycle of the package, thereby reducing packaging waste.

2 The extension of green design thinking

From the previous 4 points of the original green design content, we can see that the starting point of green design is mainly on the technical level, from the perspective of environmental protection and energy conservation. This is a reflection of the "nature-based" design philosophy, and also reflects the return of modern designers' morality and social responsibility.

However, green design should not only remain at the technical level, but should also be reflected in the design of thinking and principles. Green design is a change in the concept of design, requiring designers to design a more concise, long-lasting, perfect product in a more responsible way. For example, in 1994, philip starck designed a "green TV" for a French company. In addition to technically using a recyclable material, it also reflects a simple, long-lasting and safe "green" feeling in its shape and style.

In the definition of green design, it also mentioned "to meet the requirements of the environmental objectives, while ensuring the products must have the function, service life, quality and other requirements." This is mainly for the humanized design ideas embodied in product design, so green design can be said to further deepen the humanistic design ideas.

The principle of user-friendly design can be summarized as "people-oriented", and design considerations are based on human-centered design. "People-oriented" refers not only to individual people, but also to the whole person, that is, people in society, people in the environment, and macro humans. From this point of view, "nature-based" and "people-oriented" are similar. In past product design, due to overemphasis on individuals and small-scale individuals, the macro humanity and even the entire society and the natural environment were neglected, which led to the emergence of various problems such as lack of resources and serious pollution. But now we can't make the same mistake, that is, only emphasize the macro people and thus ignore the individual people. While green products are eco-friendly and energy-efficient, they must also be able to better meet the requirements of users of the products (individuals), including functional requirements, safety requirements, comfort, economy, aesthetics, and so on. Emphasizing macro people and ignoring individual people may be a misunderstanding of many current green products. For example, there are many kinds of green products. Although they are environmentally friendly, their prices are much higher than similar products, and they are not as functional or aesthetic products. How can we say that this product is a real product? In the sense of green products.

The meaning of green design is the embodiment of the "people-oriented" design principle. Green thinking is also a reflection of human thinking. Therefore, in the product design, the content of the green design addition to the aforementioned 4 points, but also to add a little bit, that is, the humanized design of the product, that is, focusing on products can better meet individual needs, including more complete functions, It is safer and more comfortable to use and looks more beautiful. The green thinking in product design should also include the meaning of safety, nature, and humanity, so that it can be regarded as a true green product.

3 Conclusion

Green design is called "another efficiency revolution in industrial production" and has become a mainstream direction in current product design. For a long time, it will be a design principle that needs to be considered and emphasized in product design. However, so far, green products are mostly “green” in a certain technical aspect, rather than achieving “green” in the full sense of the entire life cycle of a product. Green design should not only stay on the technical level, but should rise to the height of design concepts and design principles. Therefore, we must clarify the true meaning of green thinking in product design and how to apply green thinking to design. In this way, we can design more and better green products and reflect the green meaning. I hope our future can live in more green, and we can have more genuine green products around us.

Source: Architecture World


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