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Closed loop material cycle construction : Defining and assessing closed loop material cycle construction as a component of a comprehensive approach to sustainable material design in the context of sustainable building

Sassi, P. 2009. Closed loop material cycle construction : Defining and assessing closed loop material cycle construction as a component of a comprehensive approach to sustainable material design in the context of sustainable building. PhD Thesis, Cardiff University.

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Abstract

This thesis sets out to identify and define a set of criteria by which building materials and elements can be assessed in terms of forming part of closed loop material cycle, and from which legally binding targets can be developed to support good practice in relation to sustainable material design in the built environment. An initial investigation into the research context of sustainability applied to the built environment and the means of implementing good practice in the building industry is followed by a review of selected sustainable material design philosophies. Based on a synthesis of these philosophies and how they can be applied to building practice, the dissertation proposes a concept for a comprehensive approach to sustainable material design that incorporates a requirement for close loop material cycle construction. The characteristics of closed loop material cycles and their relevance to the building industry are considered, and a set of criteria for closed loop material cycle construction is formulated, drawing on existing research and guidance on natural recovery and design for deconstruction and recycling. The criteria are applied in a pilot assessment of selected materials, building elements and three whole house designs, which suggests that closed loop material cycle construction is technically feasible. The assessment results are used to suggest possible practical good practice targets for closed loop material cycle construction content that are achievable for mainstream housing construction and that can bring significant benefits in terms of improving the sustainability of construction developments. The dissertation concludes with a critical reflection on the conceptual development and practical application of the closed loop material cycle criteria and proposes an agenda for further research in this field.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Status: Unpublished
Schools: Architecture
ISBN: 9781303189449
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 30 March 2016
Last Modified: 31 Jan 2020 06:42
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/55846

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