A critical comparison of timber frame and masonry residential construction in terms of energy efficiency and sustainability in the UK

Gawne, Matthew (2011) A critical comparison of timber frame and masonry residential construction in terms of energy efficiency and sustainability in the UK. BSc dissertation, University of Portsmouth.

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    The increasing demand for sustainability solutions to be applied to all aspects of energy intensive activities has led to some radical reforms in the property sector and the regulations that govern it. Increased U values improving thermal efficiency for all aspects of new builds have been adopted to reduce energy/CO2 emissions; however the degree of sustainability for certain construction methods have not been formally identified and this study was conducted in order to add to existing information on two of the most prominent construction methods: timber frame and masonry construction.

    Through a combination of primary and secondary data collection techniques the processes and lifecycles of these two building types were examined, in order to evaluate which method of construction should be adopted for future housing construction in the UK.

    The amalgamation of questionnaires, with various industries and interviews with professional bodies provided key up to date information on issues relating to all stages and lifecycles of each building material. Representatives from the following organisations offered essential input and continual assistance thereafter:

    • Timber Research and Development Association (TRADA)
    • Brick Development Association (BDA)

    The combination of these methods produced varied information and outlined the complexities of the subject which was undertaken. It indicated the positive and negative aspects of each building material and their potential uses following the demolition process. The study determined that timber allows for energy efficient homes with smaller external wall widths and a lower embodied energy in the construction process on a cradle to site evaluation. However the increased demand of timber for both construction and biomass (for fuel) is inclined to raise its market value and one of the key issues relating to material choice for construction is that of cost. It is thought that cost implications along with positive traditional perceptions of masonry will bolster its future in construction.

    Item Type: Dissertation
    Departments/Research Groups: Faculty of Technology > School of Civil Engineering and Surveying
    Depositing User: Jane Polwin
    Date Deposited: 17 Nov 2011 11:42
    Last Modified: 28 Jan 2015 11:48
    URI: http://eprints.port.ac.uk/id/eprint/5348

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