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Helix Changelog

Learn about recent updates in Ecochain Helix

Artjom Janssen avatar
Written by Artjom Janssen
Updated over a week ago

As Helix continues to grow and evolve, we are constantly updating and improving to enhance the user experience. In this article, we provide a comprehensive overview of the recent changes in Helix.

Latest Updates

3.05.2024 - Ecoinvent v3.9.1 Cut-off in Helix

New Update

We published a new LCA database, Ecoinvent v3.9.1, in Helix!

What is new in Helix?

  • 1,099 new datasets and 1,876 updated datasets were integrated, with around 271 new products added.

    • Sectors updated with version 3.9 include: Agriculture, Batteries, Chemicals, Electricity, Metals, Pulp and Paper, Oil and Gas, and Waste

    • Further information can be found on the ecoinvent website.

  • Ecoinvent v3.9.1 in Helix now provides new LCIA methods - EF 3.1 and EN15804+A2 (based on EF v3.1).

    • To view these methods (Figure 1):

      • Go to settings

      • Find the calculation method.

      • In the LCA standard field, select "EF 3.1 method" or “EN15804+A2 (2022).

CAUTION LCIA methods: These new LCIA methods are NOT available for previous database versions, such as Ecoinvent v3.8 or NMD v3.8, and older.

What is the new content per sector?

Here’s what’s most relevant to our customers in the new ecoinvent v3.9.1:

  • Batteries: The update introduces new datasets for 'Lithium, Iron, and Phosphate' battery technology, expanding the database's coverage to five key battery chemistries. These datasets include specific battery components and updated information on battery separators and electrolytes.

  • Building and construction: The update includes new data for cement and concrete using recycled and waste-mixed aggregates. The global cement and concrete production datasets have been restructured, maintaining only the most representative datasets.

  • Chemicals and plastics: The update adds 36 new chemical products, including pesticides and plasticizers such as ethephon, triclopyr, and dioctyl adipate. Additionally, it introduces data on steam reforming technology for hydrogen production in Europe and globally, marking the first step towards improving hydrogen representation in the database.

  • Electricity: Ecoinvent v3.9.1 updates electricity market mixes for various regions, reflecting 2019 conditions and 2020 for the US, Canada, and Switzerland. Additionally, electricity mixes for China, India, and Brazil are updated. The update also includes detailed submarket data and new information on electricity transmission networks, covering aerial, underground, and subsea cables. Importantly, residual mixes are introduced using data from the Association of Issuing Bodies (AIB).

Note - Residual mix: “Residual mix” refers to the electricity mix on the grid after excluding power from consumers who do not have specific claims to Renewable Energy Certificates (RECs) or Guarantees of Origin (GOs).

Using Ecoinvent v3.9.1 Cut-off in Helix

How to select the database on the usage and emissions page

If you want to use this database on the usage and emissions page:

  1. Go to settings.

  2. Find the calculation method.

  3. In the Standard Database field, select "Worldwide - Ecoinvent v 3.9.1 Cut-Off" (Figure 1).

    Figure 1: Viewing the new Ecoinvent v 3.9.1 Cut-Off calculation method in Helix.

How to select the database on the usage and emissions page?

If you want to use this database on the usage and emissions page:

  1. Go to settings.

  2. Find the calculation method.

  3. In the Standard Database field, select "Worldwide - Ecoinvent v 3.9.1 Cut-Off" (Figure 2).

    Figure 2: Selecting the new Worldwide - Ecoinvent v 3.9.1 Cut-Off database in Helix.

How to select datasets from the new database?

If you want to search for a dataset in the database:

  1. Type "v3.9.1" in the search field, followed by a keyword (i.e. electricity Europe) (Figure 3).

Figure 3: Searching for Ecoinvent v3.9.1 datasets in Helix.

When to use Ecoinvent v3.9.1?

  • Dutch Construction sector: If you are modeling products sold in the Dutch Construction sector, beware that the NMD assessment method will be updated in 2024. The NMD database will be updated to “NMD3.9”, which will be based on Ecoinvent 3.9.1. Additionally, This will involve adopting new ECI weighting factors, among others.

  • As general best practice: Use the latest database version for any new projects. In Helix, we recommend selecting EF 3.1 method, EN16804+A2 (2019, based on EF 3.1), or IPCC 2021 as the LCIA method to calculate impacts using Ecoinvent v3.9.1

27.10.2023 - Bug fixes and more!

Helix is constantly improving. In this edition, we have solved a lot of issues so you can work smoothly in the application.

Bugs fixed:

Environmental profiles can be generated using the 'generate report' button.

On the product overview page, you can download each product independently.

Other fixes:

  • The connection and unlinking of transport methods has been improved.

  • It is now possible to export products even if the account is locked.

  • When you export and reimport references on the purchasing page, all of these references are automatically connected.

We are always improving!

27.10.2023 - Helix bug - Environmental profile

Currently, the environmental profile generator is experiencing an issue. We are fixing this issue as soon as possible!

Update 27/10/2023 - This has been resolved! You can export environmental profiles as usual.

What happened?

If you download(ed) multiple environmental profiles you might receive a mail with an error message.


While we are working on deploying a fix as soon as possible, it is still possible to generate the ‘environmental profiles’ 1-by-1 from the Ecochain Helix software.

Solution 1 - download one by one on LCA report page

1. Go to the generate report pag

2. Only select one product

3. Click on Generate LCA report

4. Select on another product and repeat

Solution 2 - Go to product overview

2. Click on results

3. Click on Environmental profile to export the file

18.10.2023 - References in Purchasing database - issues

Is the dataset in the purchasing database not available?

What is it?

After a small update, not all databases can be found in the purchasing database.

What can be found in the purchasing database?

It is possible to select all datasets from:

  • Nationale Milieudatabase v3.1 (obv Ecoinvent 3.5)

  • Nationale Milieudatabase v3.3 (obv Ecoinvent 3.6)

  • Nationale Milieudatabase v3.5 (obv Ecoinvent 3.6)

  • Ecoinvent v3.5 Cut-off

  • Ecoinvent v3.6 Cut-off

  • Ecoinvent v3.8 Cut-off

The impact shows 0 in the purchasing page. What can I do?

Currently, some datasets show 0 values in the search results. These datasets can be selected and used even though they display 0 in the search results. When selected, then the impact of the dataset is taken into account.

Help! My dataset is not shown in the purchasing database. What can I do?

If you want to publish your datasets in the purchasing page, please do the following:

  1. Go to the product overview page (results → product overview) of the account you want to publish

  2. Click on 'unpublish all matching products'

  3. Click on 'publish all matching products'

  4. Your datasets can now be found in the purchasing database. The database is now public and all users can see and use your dataset in their own LCA model.

Note: Only admin users can publish or unpublish datasets.

26.09.2023 - Small improvements Helix (Product Results speed and bug fixes)

Helix is continuously improving!

Product results page

We have worked on increasing the loading speed of the product results page. This page should load much faster!

Composition page - manual edit

The manual edit button on the composition page has been fixed and you can now press enter to submit your materials.

Product page - Advanced setting

The product page does not show all properties by default anymore. You will have to click on 'Advanced' to see all settings

Audit projects removed

The "Audit projects" button has been removed from the results tab.

14.09.2023 - Technical issue: Process x Product page shows invalid results

The process x product page shows 0 values if you manually edit composition.

UPDATE 21/9/2023 - This is not an issue anymore. And it's working as intended.

What happened?

The distribution in the process x product page experienced a bug that showed 0 values (shown in blue) if:

  1. Custom distribution method (shown in red) is chosen

  2. Composition is changed manually (shown in orange) in the composition page. If you import an Excel file, then it doesn't matter.

Am I affected?

  • Did you use custom distribution method in process x product?

  • Did you manually change the composition of a product?

If you answered both questions with a yes, then it would be good to follow one of the workarounds below.

If you answered one of these questions with a no, then this doesn't apply to you and you can continue to work as usual.


Workaround 1 - Import and export products

  1. Change composition in the composition page

  2. Export products (purple) from the product page

  3. Import the same product file in the product page.

Workaround 2 - Edit composition using Excel import

  1. Export composition file from the composition page

  2. Make change in Excel

  3. Import composition file in the composition page


14.09.2023 - We are working hard on fixing this issue and will keep you updated on the process.

21.09.2023 - Issue has been resolved. There is no need to work with workarounds.

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