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Using Concrete Service Life Prediction Models to Estimate the Life-Cycle Costs of Concrete Structures.

pdf icon Using Concrete Service Life Prediction Models to Estimate the Life-Cycle Costs of Concrete Structures. (232 K)
Ehlen, M. A.

NISTIR 6327; May 1999.

Modelling Service Life and Life-Cycle Cost of Steel-Reinforced Concrete. Report From the NIST/ACI/ASTM Workshop Held in Gaithersburg, MD. Proceedings. Summaries of Invited Presentations. Summary 2.10. November 9-10, 1998, 17-18 pp, 1999.

Available from:

National Technical Information Service (NTIS), Technology Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, Springfield, VA 22161.
Telephone: 1-800-553-6847 or 703-605-6000;
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Order number: PB99-144933


reinforced concretes; chlorides; concretes; corrosion; life (durability); transport processes


NIST's Building and Fire Research Laboratory has developed several economic techniques applicable to construction that have become ASTM standards. These include techniques for life-cycle costing and analytical hierarchical decision-making. The techniques have been applied in the development of the life-cycle costing software, BridgeLCC, for use in comparing new technology and traditional materials and systems for bridges on a common life-cycle economic basis. In the first instance, BridgeLCC was applied to bridge applications of fiber-reinforced polymer composites but, as part of NIST's Partnership for High-Performance Concrete Technology program, it is now being applied by several State Departments of Transportation to life-cycle costing of high-performance concrete (HPC) in bridges. The service life input is provided by the model described in the presentation. BridgeLCC incorporates the NET-developed life-cycle costing standard, ASTM E 917, Practice for Measuring Life-Cycle Costs of Buildings and Building Systems, and uses the NIST cost classification scheme. It can be used for sensitivity analyses, including Monte Carlo simulations. Examples of applications are: In building a new bridge, should steel, or conventional concrete, or high-performance concrete, be used in the girders? Or, for an existing bridge, should it be repaired or replaced? Should it be painted now or painted later? In applying BridgeLCC to the life-cycle cost of a bridge, the model addresses all bridge-related costs that occur during construction, e.g., maintenance and repair, and disposal of the structure (whether incurred by the agency, by the users of the bridge, or by affected "non-users'?. All costs are discounted to a single number in present-day dollars using an interest rate formula.