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Calculating Embodied Carbon for Custom Structural Systems
Calculating Embodied Carbon for Custom Structural Systems

embodied carbon, structure, custom structural system

Yashwanth Munukoti avatar
Written by Yashwanth Munukoti
Updated over a week ago

The Carbon Feature within cove.tool allows users to calculate embodied carbon for a structural system that doesn't fall under the structural options available in the general inputs categories. This is especially useful for light frame and single-family home projects.

In the Carbon page, located within the General Inputs section, you will find a set of fundamental Structural System inputs. These inputs encompass the primary construction materials: Steel, Concrete, and Mass Timber. However, if your project necessitates estimating the embodied carbon for a custom structural system that doesn't precisely align with these predefined categories, the following steps will guide you in achieving accurate results.

Begin by selecting the option that closely resembles your custom structural system from the available choices in the General Inputs section. This initial selection provides a starting point for your estimation.

Navigate to the EPD selection section (right under General Inputs), where you can access Environmental Product Declarations (EPDs) to select for your specific structural system in the Superstructure segment of this page.

Following this you can move to the EPD assignment section(right under EPD selection) where you can assign the chosen EPDs to your project's structure. To further detail your estimation, set the quantities for the various Superstructure components: Beam, Column, Floor Slab, Girder, and Roof Slab. Be meticulous in aligning these quantities with your project's actual composition.

If certain components mentioned above are not applicable to your structural system, simply zero out the quantity for those specific items.

You should now be able to view the estimate for your specific structure in the Carbon Profile section of the carbon page.

For instance, If your project is a light frame building with no traditional post and beam superstructure:

  1. You can ensure the studs are selected in the assembly builder.

  2. In the Carbon Feature, select any superstructure

  3. Assign the stud EPD's as normal.

  4. Then, in the EPD Assignment page, set the superstructure quantities that are not relevant like beams, columns, etc., to zero.

  5. This will let you estimate the carbon profile based on the wood studs for your superstructure.

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