The attached graphic is a simplified depiction of the LCA. Click image to enlarge.
A supportive analysis came from a consortium of organizations (McKinsey, ICCA, and Bayer) who concluded that adopting measures improving thermal efficiency of structural wall, floor, and ceiling panels, including composite, could reduce energy and CO2 emissions from such structures by 30% over three years, and 50% in the following three years. Such structures consume more than 1/3 of the total US energy and 2/3 of all the electricity used. Structures/buildings and refrigerated transportation enclosures are responsible for more atmospheric pollution than cars, and the energy consumed in such structure results in 35% of all CO2 emissions.
This LCA was conducted to:
This study considered life- cycle inventory and environmental impacts relevant to the polyiso bunstock manufacturing process and was based on typical insulation and foam core products made from polyiso.
The Life Cycle Assessment first needed to determine the energy consumption and Global Warming Potential gas emissions across the eight embodied phases, and then compare to the two use phases. The first result was embodied GWP and embodied energy. These values were then compared to the energy consumption and GWP-gas emissions during the last two phases: Use and Disposal.
The two ratios of energy and emission results were respectively termed Energy Payback (savings) and GWP Payback (benefit).
The ISO bunstock phases can be portrayed as:
The embodied energy and GWP for polyisocyanurate foam core (2.1 pcf) assumed comparable manufacturing and transportation of embodied energy as noted by Polyiso Industry Manufacturing Association across 29 polyiso plants in the US. The embodied energy and embodied GWP of Dyplast’s ISO-CF/2.0 are:
|R-Value||Embodied Energy per Board Foot||Embodied GWP per Board Foot|
|5.6||7.51 kBtu's||1.13 lbs CO2|
|11.2||15.02 kBtu's||2.16 lbs CO2|
Polyiso foam cores with high insulating value can play a significant role in reducing Greenhouse Gases that contribute to global warming and our dependence on fossil fuels. Polyiso foam cores with high insulation value within composite applications is indeed an advancement in composite technologies.
Example #1: Polyiso in a Structure Application
|Area||73,959 square feet|
|Baseline Composite Insulation||R of 15|
|Comparison (new) Composite Insulation||R of 30|
|Additional Insulation required||Approx. 180,000 Board Feet|
|Embodied Energy||16.4 kBtu/square foot|
|Embodied GWP||1.04 kg CO2 equivalent /square foot|
The author(s) of this document compiled detailed information to the best of their knowledge at the time. No representation is made, or warranty given for the completeness or correctness of the information in this study.