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Tricycle Digital Carpet Sampler
Sarah Rich, 19 Oct 06

Tricycle.jpg Achieving a perfect building interior is an imperfect process. Just about everything that goes into creating a room must be measured and remeasured, cut and recut until it fits -- a process which generates tremendous waste. Countless tons of garbage from residential demolition and remodel go to the landfills each year, of which no small percentage is carpet scrap.

Carpet is troublesome not only because it's difficult to cut precisely, but because standard carpet is incredibly petroleum intensive. A quart of oil goes into every 18" square of carpet -- the size of a sample swatch. The frequency with which designers and decorators go through these virtually disposable oil-guzzlers is rather shocking, and that's before they've even ordered!

This is where Tricycle comes in. Tricycle has designed a digital modeling system called SIM that replaces physical sampling with a computer-generated replica which can be printed on recyclable paper, requiring no oil, and using 95% less energy and water than carpet. It's a clear example of the way technology can eliminate waste, conserve resources, and save companies money.

Tricycle also created an environmental calculator which allows manufacturers, contractors and customers to measure the amount of waste they could keep out of landfills in one year by using the SIM system. There's certainly room for other manufacturers to follow this model. Although it doesn't address the massive impact of the end-of-life building scenario, it does establish an effective means of preventing waste in the early stages of design.

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This is a pretty cool development in the carpet sample business. There's an article on it in Fortune Small Business via Hugg.

Posted by: Jetson Green on 19 Oct 06



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