Reviv-e

Reviv-e is a low impact lifestyle product based on integrated regenerative thinking. It celebrates the e-waste we create through the practical beauty derived from restoration and re-purposing of PCB boards. By redirecting PCB boards from traditional energy intensive reclamation methods, reviv-e elevates the underlying beauty of PCBs to serve as a sculptural light as a reflection of society's connection with nature.

Advisor

John-Michael Ekeblad

Role

Design Research

Design Development

Production

Year

2021

Outcome

Lighting Design

Research

With the rise of technology and planned obsolescence, e-waste production has become global crisis. Unfortunately, countries like India are not only burdened by its own e-waste, but also that from others due to stringent laws and high labor costs in the countries of origin. Despite the laws, India's rather un-regulated informal sector of waste management combining with the burden shift has led to

  • Social injustice

  • Child labor

  • Environmental hazards

One of the major contributing factors are printed circuit boards (PCBs) due to salvageable amounts of precious metals like copper and gold. People in Seelampur can be found removing components by hand, desoldering circuit boards over coal-fired grills, burning plastic casings off wires to extract copper, and mining gold by soaking computer chips in black pools of hydrochloric acid.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Conceptualization

The process began with collecting e-waste from neighboring areas and breaking it down into its components. Everything from printers, to Wi-Fi routers to speakers had one thing in common, the printed circuit board. By intercepting the boards between the stages of component removal and stripping, the boards can be redirected from the hands of children and improper salvage techniques.

The reclaimed PCBs were put through several tests and it was found that these boards react to light in various ways

  • The copper blocks and reflects light​​​​

  • ​The sanded bits are translucent​​​​​​​​​​

  • ​The holes allow light to pass through in interesting patterns​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Mun Mirror

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Graphia

Diagnostic Toolkit

Design for

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Outcome

Reviv-e is a pursuit to recognize and value the e-waste we create as we move towards a more sustainable future. This project acknowledges and utilizes one of the largest contributors to unsustainability in the e-waste recycling process, the printed circuit boards. By redirecting PCBs from traditional energy reclamation methods, reviv-e elevates the underlying beauty of pcbs to serve as a sculptural light.

Prototype

The process began with procuring numerous PCBs from e-waste and cutting them up into sections.

  • The sections with high copper content was sanded down to reveal the layer of metal, soldered together and finally polished

  • ​The other sections were cut into shape according to size and deburred​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

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The working prototype includes a reflective exposed copper disc, held in place by a clear acrylic shaft which is surrounded by strips of sanded down PCBs. The exposed wires are a nod to the brutalist nature of this piece. During the day, reviv-e becomes a sculptural piece reacting to sunlight and when the sun sets becomes an accent light with an ethereal glow reminiscent of a cityscape.

Depending on its scale, the light is an alternative for a large installation or a daytime sculpture & nighttime accent light inside homes.

Details

Through multiple ideation sessions and tests, a wall mounted lighting solution was chosen to celebrate the PCB in its full glory. Reviv-e took form through a disc of exposed copper that covers a polar array of strips of PCBs. It is mounted on a mirrored back to further increase the reflectivity and bring forward the interesting patterns through lights