LABORATORY WASTE MANAGEMENT AND TREATMENT. PRACTICAL APPLICATION FOR INDUSTRIAL ENGINEERING UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS
Concepts as sustainability and other environmental issues are often related with research projects, industrial innovation and education too. In the present context, it is necessary the formation of the students in the field of environment and sustainability due to its importance in the future industrial activities. Thus, in the course of environmental engineering (for industrial engineering students), a practical problem about waste management and treatment was developed to be solved by the students. To make the problem as real as possible, the chemical wastes from laboratories were used for this learning project. Thus, the students have to develop a system or procedure to collect the wastes in the laboratory, segregating the wastes by their chemical nature, and developing a set of chemical procedures to treat the wastes. Technical and economic issues have to be considered for the practical viability of the process. The students have to demonstrate the viability of the solution proposed and the economic cost. Students are organized in groups of 2 or 3 people. Each group work independently of the other and the solution proposed for each group it is expected to be different. At the end of the course, each group has to present orally their results in front of the class. A discussion about the advantages and disadvantages of each work is done with the moderation of the professor. Finally, the students grade all of the works, and the best work it is expected to be implemented for the management and treatment of the laboratory wastes.