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CRAVEzero pinboard - how to build an effective low life cycle cost nearly zero energy building. The Life Cycle Cost Calculator

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The H2020 project CRAVEzero aims to increase the viability of Nearly Zero Energy Buildings through solutions and tools for supporting the cost reduction during the whole life cycle of the buildings.


In particular, one of the backbones of the project is the CRAVEzero pinboard, a structured platform that includes all the tools and supporting materials elaborated within the project.


One of the key tools available on the pinboard is the Life Cycle Cost (LCC) calculator that implements a structured methodology for evaluating the LCC of a new buildings, with the possibility to compare different construction variants from the design towards the operation and maintenance. The LCC calculator is organized for collecting the cost for the design, construction and operation of the building.


The tool is organized in three main parts:


  • Project information: where to insert the main data about the geometry, energy demand, design, economic boundary conditions and energy vectors’ prices
  • Construction cost: where to insert the cost for envelope and services and to customize the maintenance cost
  • Results: where to compare the life cycle cost of the analyzed variants with a detailed breakdown of the costs

The data collection within the tool is organized following as a base reference the LCC structure introduced by the Standard ISO 15686-5:2017 (Buildings and constructed assets -- Service life planning -- Part 5: Life-cycle costing). The tool reports a set of reference values for enabling an immediate calculation, but in any case each parameter can be modified by the user. In particular, the analysis of maintenance costs of HVAC systems is based on standard values from EN 15459:2018, which provides yearly maintenance costs for each element, including operation, repair, and ser-vice, as a percentage of the initial investment. Lifespan for system replacement is also provided.


In addition to the online version of the LCC calculator, that implements a simplified calculation approach, the CRAVEzero pinboard offers the possibility to download a detailed LCC calculation sheet. This tool refers to an advanced use of LCC calculation thar requires a higher amount of data (e.g. detailed cost for all the design phases, cost for materials and labour), with a comprehensive breakdown of cost for the building elements. If a user requires a simplified approach for a quick comparison of different calculation variants, the LCC calculator is the best solution. In case of an advanced use for a detailed evaluation (also for research purposes), the LCC calculation sheet suits the scope.


The LCC calculator and the LCC calculation cost are available on CRAVEzero website