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Academic year
Didactic period
Annualità Singola

Training objectives

During this Lsf course students will be called to apply in a critical form, knowledge, skills, methods they learned attending il LSF and in previous years courses, specifically about a sustainable approach in product, environment and social fields.

PRODUCT DESIGN module, that is the main discipline of the LSFA, will involve different activities related to product design (concept design, process design, design management) as part of a general theme titled Circular Design for Circular economy, focused on the design contribution to innovative product, and service for circular economy.

ECODESIGN module concernes a theme anticipated in the first half of the 20th century through the projecting visions of Buckminster Fuller and Ralph Erskine. It has developed as a social and environmental operative approach in the last decades of the last century, following the impulse of international programmes and actions linked to sustainable development and thanks to theorists and innovators such as Serge Latouche, Victor Papanek, and John Thackara.

Nowadays ecodesign is a veritable multi-disciplinary projecting principle that can be applied to different and multi-levelled contexts, and has different operative methods involving products and systems configuration in the entirety of their cycle.

The ECODESIGN module aims to give the students a general framework of these contexts and tools, together with a critical consciousness of the complexity of the problems connected to social and environmental sustainability and to projecting and productive processes.

ENERGETICS FOR INDUSTRIAL DESIGN is a module that aims to characterize the Physics and Energetics elements in the design of the industrial product. The module supplies basic knowledge to support the choices in the product design, towards the exploitation for renewable energies.

The module of MATERIALS FOR SUSTAINABILITY provides knowledge about plastics materials choice. Design for manufacturing.


Students must have passed the exam of Laboratorio di Product Design 2 or Laboratorio di progettazione di prodotto II.

Following skills are required:

• functional analysis of a product,

• concept design through sketching and prototypes modeling,

• product design development

• representation of perceptive qualities and morphological characteristics of the product and of its materials through rendering tools, manual or automatic and technical drawings.

Course programme

Lsf will be a work in progress aiming to the definition and development of the degree thesis. The course includes 240 hours (h) of teaching, with lectures and exercises. LSA is divided into 4 modules:
"Circular design for circular economy", will be the main theme, which will explore the role of design in the improving and innovation of products, processes and services for the circular economy, presented in detail to students in July 2018. Students will develop solutions on these issues through dedicated educational experiences and the acquisition of design approach tools, useful to address projects related to the sustainability of products considered in the life-cycle resources-production-distribution and consumption, both in Western conditions and in other cultural contexts. Within this theme, thesis topics that are also very diversified and related to different subjects can be used.

Work will be organized in two different phases , one for each semester:
Phase1): Students will be called to build a common information archive about LSF theme.
Phase 2): Students will be called to define and develop their thesis project in cooperation with their thesis supervisors.
Three parts compose the module.
Part 1: Mechanics & Thermodynamics (8 h)
Units of measurement. Systems of measurement. Kinematics. Centre of Mass. Dynamics. Work and kinds of energy. Conservation of Energy. Equilibrium and Elasticity. Gravitation. Concepts and definitions used in thermodynamics. Work and heat. Thermal machines. Thermodynamics laws and non reversible process. Carnot cycle. Entropy & Exergy. Outlines of thermodynamics cycles (Brayton, Rankine, refrigeration cycle, heat pumps). Outlines of fluids dynamics (Newton, viscosity, laminar & turbulent flow, hydraulic head loss).
Part 2: Renewable energy (8 h)
Traditional primary energy. Renewable energy. Power plants, CHP plants (co- & tri-generation). Wind Farms. Hydro-electrical plants. Geothermal power plants. Photovoltaic plants. Solar thermal systems. Fuel cells. Ground source/sink air conditioning plants.
Part 3: Laboratory (8 h) Workshops about the students projects.
MATERIALS FOR SUSTAINABILITY (24 h). Basics about mechanical properties of materials (4 h):Strength, stiffness, toughness, ductility. Tension testing. Advantages and disadvantages of plastics (4 h):Formability, lightness, mechanical properties, cost, recyclabilty, environmental stress cracking, optical properties. Design with plastics (8 hours): Pseudoelastic method, creep curves, viscoelasticity, small thickness, reinforcing ribs.
Joints (4 h): Adhesive joints. Ultrasound welding, vibrational welding, rotational welding, manual techniques.
Plastics manufacturing (8 h): Extrusion, injection molding, blow molding , thermoforming and rotational molding.
Plastics materials (4 h): Polyolefins, PVC, styrenics, polyesters, polyamides, acetal, acrylics, high performance materials. biodegradable, compostable and from renewable sources. PLA PGA, PHB.
Plastics recycling (4 h). Assistanship during design project (12 h). Ecodesign (48 h).
Main themes of the lessons are: identification and interpretation of the contributions by ecodesign forerunners and theorists and, more generally, of holistic views on social and environmental, architectural, and sustainable productive contexts (8 h); analysis of the innovative characters in eco-design (8 h); study of the normative and operative tools of the discipline (6 h); study of ecodesign materials and applications in the different productive domains (10 h); systemic projecting approach (8 h). Some lessons will be specifically focused on sustainable design in food culture, with particular attention to production, transformation, consume and food recycling (16 h)

Didactic methods

Product Design
Method includes lectures and presentations, design works with interim assessments and a final design workshop, with design and model making activities.

During final workshop students will be asked to redesign a product for specific users.

During the first semester activities will develop through frontal lessons, seminars and workshops with revisions by the professors; this articulation wants the students to operatively approach ecodesign themes and methods through research, study, and critical reflection on both direct and indirect sources. In the second semester didactical activities will mainly consist in seminars for the fulfilling of the written exposé and for assistance in developing the final thesis.

Renewable energy and Materials for sustainability
Lectures and workshops.

Learning assessment procedures

Product Design
Interim works,excercises and assessments are conceived to let student practically check what they learned. Final exam will be an interview about lectures and how the knowledge acquired has been applied in interim and final design work.

At the end of first semester the advancement of students’ preparation will be tested in a discussion focused on an essential bibliography and on themes emerged during the lessons. The result of the oral test will consist in a partial assessment to be added to the final evaluation of the workshop.

During the second semester students will be asked to elaborate a written composition in the form of an original paper illustrated with pictures and drawings. The text is required to analytically and critically develop an ecodesign theme that must be previously approved by the professors and possibly aimed to the final work for the thesis. Through autonomous study and during assisted seminars and revisions, each student must individually develop the paper, which will be the object of a specific assessment to be added to the final evaluation of the workshop. The paper must be handed printed and bound in a specific graphic layout.

Renewable energy
Written test about topics commented during the lectures.

Materials for sustainability
Oral discussion of the design project

Final exam
In accordance with regulations, the Final Synthesis Laboratory ends with an examination and the assignment of a vote by the Commission composed of teachers of the Laboratory. Prerequisite to successful completion of the exam is the presentation of the work developed within the LSF and a work program for the completion of the thesis to demonstrate its feasibility. The work to be submitted consists in:

• Report on exercises carried out in various forms throughout the year

• Report on the training program

• Report on the thesis project

The exam consists of an interview aimed at verifying the level of understanding of the topics covered in the different modules, the level of development of the thesis project and the work program for its completion.

Reference texts

Testi di Riferimento: Design
Munari B., Design e comunicazione visiva, Laterza, 1969/ 2002
Rodari, G., Grammatica della fantasia, Einaudi, 1973/2010
Burdeck B.E., Design. Storia,teoria e pratica del design di prodotto, Gangemi, 2008
Bonsiepe G., Teoria e pratica del disegno industriale, Feltrinelli, 1993
Mincolelli G., Esercizi di design. Morfogenesi e proprietà del materiale, Maggioli Editore, 2008
Mincolelli G., Customer-user centered design, Maggioli Editore, 2008
Momo P.P., Zucchelli F., Design to success, ISEDI, 1997
Norman D., La caffettiera del masochista, psicopatologia degli oggetti quotidiani, Giunti, 2009
Norman D. Il design del futuro, Apogeo, 2008
Papanek V., Progettare per il mondo reale, Mondadori, 1973
Scodeller D., Design spontaneo, Corraini, 2017
# 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 MD Journal

Reference texts: Sustainability
Baldo G., Marino M., Rossi S., Analisi del ciclo di vita LCA: gli strumenti per la progettazione sostenibile di materiali, prodotti e processi. Edizioni Ambiente, 2008
Banfi E., Dalla culla alla culla. Come conciliare tutela dell’ambiente, equità sociale e sviluppo, Blu Editore, 2003
Barbero S., Cozzo B., Ecodesign, Gribaudo, 2009
Basti A., Materiali e sostenibilità ambientale: riflessioni sul ruolo dell’eco-design e della Life Cycle Assesment nella progettazione degli elementi costruttivi, Alinea, 2012
Bucchetti V., Packaging design: storia, linguaggi, progetto, Franco Angeli, 2005
Bryson S., Designing sustainable Packaging, Laurance King, 2000
Daly H., Oltre la crescita: l’economia dello sviluppo sostenibile, Edizioni Comunità, 2001
Giachetta A., Magliocco A., Progettazione sostenibile: dalla pianificazione territoriale all’ecodesign, Carocci, 2007

Reference texts: Iot-Interaction
Anceschi G., Il progetto delle interfacce, Domus Academy, 1993
Capolla M., La casa domotica, Maggioli Editore, 2007
Mcewen A., Hakim C., L’internet delle cose. Connettere internet con gli oggetti del mondo reale, creare dispositivi smart unendo progetti hardware e software, Apogeo, 2014
Preece J., Rogers Y., Sharp H., Interaction design, Apogeo, 2004
Riccò D., Sentire il design, sinestesie nel progetto di comunicazione, Carocci, 2008

Reference texts: Renewable energies
S. Rosati, Fisica Generale, Casa Editrice Ambrosiana, Milano
Yunus A. Cengel. Termodinamica e Trasmissione del Calore McGraw-Hill Milano

Reference texts: Ecodesign
Victor Papanek, Design for the real world. Human ecology and social change, Londra, Thames & Hudson, 1985;
Victor Papanek, The green imperative. Ecology and ethics in design and architecture, Londra, Thames & Hudson, 1995;
Serge Latouche, La scommessa della decrescita, Milano, Feltrinelli, 2007;
John Thackara, In the bubble. Design per un futuro sostenibile, Torino, Allemandi, 2008;
Laura Badalucco, Medardo Chiapponi, Energia e design. Innovazione di prodotto per la sostenibilità energetica, Roma, Carocci, 2009;
Luigi Bistagnino, Design sistemico. Progettare la sostenibilità produttiva e ambientale, Bra, Slow Food, 2009;
Paolo Tamborrini, Design sostenibile. Oggetti, sistemi e comportamenti, Milano, Electa, 2009;
Serge Latouche, Usa e getta. Le follie dell’obsolescenza programmata, Torino, Bollati Boringhieri, 2015;