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Life Cycle Assessment of alveolar brick construction system incorporating phase change materials (PCMs)
Castell, Albert; Menoufi, Karim Ali Ibrahim; Gracia Cuesta, Alvaro de; Rincon, Lídia; Boer, Dieter; Cabeza, Luisa F.
An evaluation of the environmental impact of construction systems that are composed of facades based on alveolar bricks and macroencapsulated phase change materials done using Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is presented. Their energy consumption rates for both heating and cooling have been measured and registered in two experimental cubicles located in Puigverd de Lleida (Spain). This work examines if the reduction of the environmental impact that is reached due to the energy savings achieved during the operational phase of these cubicles compensates the increase of the environmental impact that is induced during the manufacturing phase. Theoretical case studies, such as assuming different climatization and weather conditions, are proposed and studied to determine the most suitable climatic conditions for using the alveolar bricks and PCM technologies. Within the context of the LCA study, it is concluded that the overall benefit of PCM is the highest when summer weather conditions throughout the whole year is theoretically assumed, where for different assumed lifetime periods of the cubicles the reduction of the overall global impact of the cubicle containing PCM ranges from 12% to 14% in comparison to the other cubicle without PCM.
Life Cycle Assessment
Phase change material
Thermal energy storage
(c) Elsevier, 2012

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