Buildings Research Briefs

Browse all of our buildings related research briefs below, or explore by topic via the links in the right side bar (on desktop browsers) or at the bottom of this page (on mobile browsers).

Image from "A Break-Even Hazard Mitigation Metric"
Research Brief: A Break-Even Hazard Mitigation Metric
July 7, 2016

It is in society’s best interest—both economically and because of the impact on human lives—to invest in hazard-resistant buildings. But how much should be invested up front to mitigate against...

Chart image from research brief on Streamlined Life Cycle Assessment of Buildings
Research Brief: Streamlined Life Cycle Assessment of Buildings
February 18, 2016

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is a method that building practitioners can use to analyze the environmental performance of a proposed building design. However, surveys of building practitioners have...

Chart from Brief "The Impact of Changes to Surface Albedo on Radiative Forcing" 2015 Issue 12
Research Brief: The Impact of Changes to Surface Albedo on Radiative Forcing
January 27, 2016

The energy entering, reflected, absorbed, and emitted by the earth are components of the earth's radiative budget. Modifications to surface albedo, a measure of the solar energy the earth’s...

Chart from CSHub brief on city geography and urban heat island
Research Brief: City geometry and Urban Heat Island
November 18, 2015

The urban heat island (UHI) effect is defined as a temperature difference between urban areas and their rural surroundings where the city temperature is higher. UHI is typically studied using...

Chart from a CSHub brief detailing Streamlined Embodied LCA of Residential Buildings
Research Brief: Streamlined Embodied LCA of Residential Buildings
June 15, 2015

Traditional life-cycle assessment (LCA) is time, resource, and data intensive. For complex systems like residential buildings, these demands can mean that assessments are carried out after...

Report: The Decision-Making Process in the Design of Residential Structures
May 3, 2015

To improve energy efficiency, it is important to evaluate the impact of design decisions in residential buildings through all phases. CSHub researchers are developing models and tools to aid in...

Chart comparing the portion of life-cycle costs attributed to various factors.
Research Brief: Value of Building Life-Cycle Cost Analysis
May 1, 2015

Comparing residential projects in New Orleans and San Francisco, this brief demonstrates a life-cycle cost analysis (LCCA) approach that includes construction, energy consumption, and hazard-...

Streamlining residential building energy models
Research Brief: Streamlining Residential Building Energy Models
January 20, 2015

The CSHub is streamlining life-cycle assessment (LCA) tools for residential buildings in order to make the use of those tools easier and more widespread during the design process. Part of an LCA...

Urban physics
LCA Research Brief: Urban Physics: City Texture Matters
October 21, 2014

Cities contribute over 70% of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide. They also intensify air and surface temperatures when compared to their rural surroundings. This effect, known as urban heat...

Hazard life-cycle cost pie chart
LCA Research Brief: Quantifying Hazard Life-Cycle Cost
August 18, 2014

This research links together probabilistic hazard modeling and damage cost estimation to quantify the lifetime cost of repair of residential buildings due to earthquake and hurricane hazard. It...