The Techno-economic Energy & Carbon Heuristic Tool for Early-State Technologies v1.0 (TECHTEST) aids users in estimating potential energy, carbon, and cost impacts of a new technology in a streamlined spreadsheet tool that integrates life cycle assessment (LCA) and technoeconomic analysis (TEA) methods. Designed for use by a variety of stakeholders, TECHTEST can help with:

  • Understanding the cost, emissions, and energy profiles of a technology.
  • Comparing the performance of a new technology to its commercial benchmark.
  • Using scenario analysis to identify performance factors that lead to emissions and cost improvements throughout the technology’s lifetime.

Features and Capabilities:
TECHTEST utilizes user data and pre-prepared data tables derived from publicly accessible information to create cost, energy, and emissions profiles for a technology throughout its life cycle, covering all stages from cradle to grave. TECHTEST is a tool that can model lifetime impacts of both processes and products. Using pre-programmed calculations, TECHTEST compiles fundamental information to quantify the emissions costs and energy associated with complicated life cycle processes.

Using a system of assumptions about market scenarios and product viability, TECHTEST analyzes data and describes results on both macro (entire U.S. market production) and micro (per reference quantity) scales. Performance metrics for either scale can be compared in tabular and graphical form, showing the full range of costs and benefits of the technology.

Complementary Resources:

  • Tutorial videos on the techniques for cost and environmental assessment used in TECHTEST
  • Two completed TECHTEST samples showing how the tool accounts for various aspects of the product life cycle (linked at bottom of this web page)
  • MFI Data Extractor Tool extracts embodied energy and emissions data from results output files generated by the Material Flows through Industry (MFI) tool, a free web tool developed and maintained by NREL
  • Labor Cost Estimator Tool assists users with the estimation of labor costs using key rules-of-thumb for direct labor costs

TECHTEST was conceived and developed by researchers at Energetics, with funding from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO), now organized as the Industrial Efficiency and Decarbonization Office (IEDO) and the Advanced Materials and Manufacturing Technologies Office (AMMTO). Several technical experts from the DOE AMO Strategic Analysis Team contributed to the tool’s development by evaluating initial versions.

Energetics Development Team: Jordan Steen, Heather Liddell, David Thaller, Robert Brasier, Sabine Brueske

Advising: Joe Cresko, U.S. Department of Energy and Neil Popovich, National Renewable Energy Laboratory

IEDO, U.S. Department of Energy


Instructions for Users: 
TECHTEST is a downloadable, standalone tool provided in Excel format. It does not support import and export functionalities. Users should download the tool, save it as a master file, and create a new file each time they use the tool. After the data input is complete, results can be printed or saved as a PDF or Excel file.

The tool files include:

TECHTEST v1.0 Tool (Blank).xlsx
TECHTEST v1.0 Tool (Sample on Process).xlsx
TECHTEST v1.0 Tool (Sample on Product).xlsx

If you have any tool-specific comments or questions, please contact