UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Life Cycle Assessment of Waste Glass Powder Incorporation on Concrete: A Bridge Retrofit Study Case Guignone, Guilherme; Calmon, João Luiz; Vieira, Geilma; Zulcão, Robson; Rebello, Thais


The construction sector is responsible for some of the highest energy and natural resources consumption. In this context, new materials and solutions are created aimed at developing sustainable alternatives. While the literature presents papers that evaluate the mechanical and durability properties of concrete with glass waste powder and account for its environmental impact, no papers have executed the evaluation considering the retrofit of bridges. Furthermore, no papers evaluating the materials, construction, and maintenance could be found. Hence, this study proposes a technical and sustainable solution for the retrofit of the Third Bridge of Vitoria, an important intercity urban connector. This study evaluates both the technical and the environmental performance of structural concrete elements, considering the partial substitution of cement with glass waste powder and a baseline scenario with conventional concrete. The environmental impacts were evaluated through the life cycle assessment tool. The results indicate that incorporating waste glass powder in the prestressed hollow-core slabs as a partial cement replacement can improve the durability-related properties and mitigate environmental impact. It also shows that the manufacturing phase is the most impactful and that glass powder can significantly reduce the impact of maintenance.

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