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A Critical Building Lifecycle Assessment Framework for Building Designers and Decision Makers

Sami Kashkooli, Ali Mohammad (2013) A Critical Building Lifecycle Assessment Framework for Building Designers and Decision Makers. PhD thesis, University of Sheffield.

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Abstract

In the past few decades, world-wide interest in environmental preservation has involved researchers in a great challenge to find new approaches to manage the environmental impact of human activities. This challenge has been significantly highlighted in the construction sector. Lifecycle Assessment (LCA) has developed a variety of methodologies and tools to quantify and manage rates of consumption and emissions during the process of a building’s construction, service-life, and disposal. However, the building sector is not yet satisfied with the results of these methods and tools, due to the low level of sensitivity, lack of user-friendliness and precision. The principal goal of this research is to determine the level of confidence in prospective building lifecycle assessment (BLCA) methodologies and tools in the UK and their applicability to design and decision making. In addition, it investigates the differentiation of the results according to climatic and geographical variation. Therefore, it introduces a new prospective semi-quantitative framework to calculate some key factors such as total energy (including embodied energy and operational energy) during the building’s lifecycle, as well as the embodied carbon, and total environmental impact. The capability of this framework was tested through 132 modelling scenarios of a real case study (‘The Arts Tower’ of Sheffield, United Kingdom). In the study, a quantitative measurement approach was developed (an Excel-based spreadsheet) with a great flexibility in micro-detail modelling. This spreadsheet benefits from validated updatable databases and various-unlimited modelling programmes (such as Envest 2 and Ecotect 2011, in this research) to reach a more realistic decision in design. The results of this measurement approach were compared based on different modelling scenarios. The differences are based on the variety of building material scenarios through the case study building in Sheffield. The main outcome of this research is a framework of semi-quantitative prospective BLCA developed to achieve more precise results applicable to design and decision-making. The determination of the sensitivity and capability of this framework was conducted through both quantitative (132 modelling scenarios) and qualitative (surveys including questionnaires and interviews) approaches.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Social Sciences (Sheffield) > School of Architecture (Sheffield)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.581671
Depositing User: Mr. Ali Mohammad Sami Kashkooli
Date Deposited: 30 Oct 2013 15:57
Last Modified: 03 Oct 2016 10:46
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/4499

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