Repository logo

Comparative life cycle assessment (LCA) and life cycle cost analysis (LCCA) of precast and cast-in-place buildings in United States




Vasishta, Tanmay, author
Mehany, Mohammed S. Hashem M., advisor
Killingsworth, John, committee member
Atadero, Rebecca, committee member

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title


Precast construction is one of the growing construction methods for buildings across United States. Many tools have been used to assess environmental and economic impacts of the buildings. LCA and LCCA are one of the most widely used tools to evaluate the environmental and economic impacts of the buildings for their complete life cycle. The research aims to understand the life cycle environment impacts and costs over the complete life cycle for precast and cast-in-place building system. Cradle-to-grave approach was used to develop a framework for assessing the these impacts for precast and cast-in-place building systems constructed in United States through Open LCA software and NIST handbook for LCCA. The environmental impacts and costs associated with the four phases (raw material extraction and manufacturing, installation/construction, operation and demolition) of a precast building in United States were calculated and compared to cast-in-place building system. The research findings implicated that precast using sandwich panel building system had 21% lower life cycle costs (LCC) compared to cast-in-place building system. The construction phase and operation phase also had 38 % and 24% lower LCC compared to cast-in-place building systems. Additionally, lower life cycle environmental impacts towards nine environmental impact indicators were recorded for precast building systems. This study concluded that precast methodology has lower life cycle environmental and economic impacts than cast-in-place and is more sustainable construction method. The developed framework for LCA and LCCA could be applied to all concrete construction projects across the world and could be used as platform for conducting future LCA and LCCA studies as well. The research can also be used by practitioners to understand the phase-wise and total life cycle environmental and economic impacts of precast and further investigate to reduce these impacts.


Rights Access


life cycle assessment
precast buildings
life cycle cost assessment


Associated Publications