LCA-based windows calculator

Daniel Kellenberger, Nicholas Perez.

This project has resulted in the development of an Excel-based window calculator, offering a simple interface for the user to define a specific window. Based on this information, the calculator gives the environmental impact of the window over a specific lifespan, as well as the resulting R-value. The development of a prototype window calculator aims to provide environmental data that will guide the development of new window systems and to lay the foundation for a comprehensive system to facilitate choosing a window solution with the best performance and the lowest environmental impact.

This project is part of the ‘Criteria Development and Embedding System’ phase of work within Beacon’s Systems work stream. The goal of the overall systems strategy is to develop systems that enable a house to perform to the High Standard of Sustainability as defined
by Beacon. The aim of this research was to provide Beacon with a working prototype of a tool that allows the quantification of (environmental) sustainability on a system level, based on a specific functional unit (a defined window (geometry) with a certain thermal resistance (R value in W/ m2°C)) over a lifespan of 50 years. The methodology used to calculate the environmental impact is Life Cycle Assessment as defined in AS/NZS ISO 14040 and 14044.