A Life cycle sustainability assessment methodology for thermal insulation materials

İlhan, Burak
The study aims to develop a comparative holistic life cycle sustainability assessment method for building materials and test this method on thermal insulation material selection phase of a pilot renovation project. Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) and its more recent adaptation Life Cycle Sustainability Assessment (LCSA) methods have been utilized to compare the sustainability of thermal insulation material options for a pilot sheathing application. "Three pillars of sustainability" approach has been designated to form a foundation to LCSA system and Environmental Life Cycle Assessment (E-LCA), Life Cycle Costing (LCC) and Social Life Cycle Assessment (S-LCA) methods have been used together. Among them, S-LCA methodology has the greatest need for development and adaptation. For this reason, the study aims to build a S-LCA method, test it on the case of insulation material selection and interpret the results along with LCA and LCC results. Results and discussions involve both the performed case study and the suggested assessment method. The case renovation scenario was created with respect to “Energy Performance in Buildings Directive” and TS-825” documents and building data was managed in the Building Information Modeling (BIM) environment. Lack of developed LCSA standards has been the most important motivation for this study as well as the greatest challenge of it. Especially, scarcity of the local database made it difficult to obtain reliable results. Nevertheless, the case study revealed a convenient comparison table to interpret that glass wool can be an alternative sustainable sheathing material compared to rock wool and more socially sustainable compared to XPS in local conditions. Consequently, the method that has been presented in this study has a potential to serve as a model for future LCSA standards.


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Citation Formats
B. İlhan, “A Life cycle sustainability assessment methodology for thermal insulation materials,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2018.