Heat Recovery System from Air-Cooled Chillers in Iranian Hospitals

Few people would dispute the fact that one of the most common applications of energy is creating comfort in buildings, so it is probably true to say that management of energy consumption is required due to the environmental issues and increasing the efficiency of mechanical systems. From the geographical point of view, Iran is located in a warm and semi-arid region; therefore, air-cooled chillers are usually used for cooling residential buildings, commercial buildings, medical buildings, etc. In this study, a heat exchanger was designed for providing laundry hot water by utilizing condenser heat lost base on analytical results of a 540-bed hospital in the city of Mashhad in Iran. In this paper, by using the analytical method, energy consumption reduces about 13%, and coefficient of performance increases a bit. Results show that this method can help in the management of energy consumption a lot.

District 10 in Tehran: Urban Transformation and the Survey Evidence of Loss in Place Attachment in High Rises

The identity of a neighborhood is inevitably shaped by the architecture and the people of that place. Conventionally the streets within each neighborhood served as a semi-public-private extension of the private living spaces. The street as a design element formed a hybrid condition that was neither totally public nor private, and it encouraged social interactions. Thus through creating a sense of community, one of the most basic human needs of belonging was achieved. Similar to major global cities, Tehran has undergone serious urbanization. Developing into a capital city of high rises has resulted in an increase in urban density. Although allocating more residential units in each neighborhood was a critical response to the population boom and the limited land area of the city, it also created a crisis in terms of social communication and place attachment. District 10 in Tehran is a neighborhood that has undergone the most urban transformation among the other 22 districts in the capital and currently has the highest population density. This paper will explore how the active streets in district 10 have changed into their current condition of high rises with a lack of meaningful social interactions amongst its inhabitants. A residential building can be thought of as a large group of people. One would think that as the number of people increases, the opportunities for social communications would increase as well. However, according to the survey, there is an indirect relationship between the two. As the number of people of a residential building increases, the quality of each acquaintance reduces, and the depth of relationships between people tends to decrease. This comes from the anonymity of being part of a crowd and the lack of social spaces characterized by most high-rise apartment buildings. Without a sense of community, the attachment to a neighborhood is decreased. This paper further explores how the neighborhood participates to fulfill ones need for social interaction and focuses on the qualitative aspects of alternative spaces that can redevelop the sense of place attachment within the community.

Using Dynamic Glazing to Eliminate Mechanical Cooling in Multi-family Highrise Buildings

Multifamily residential buildings are increasingly being built with large glazed areas to provide tenants with greater daylight and outdoor views. However, traditional double-glazed window assemblies can lead to significant thermal discomfort from high radiant temperatures as well as increased cooling energy use to address solar gains. Dynamic glazing provides an effective solution by actively controlling solar transmission to maintain indoor thermal comfort, without compromising the visual connection to outdoors. This study uses thermal simulations across three Canadian cities (Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal) to verify if dynamic glazing along with operable windows and ceiling fans can maintain the indoor operative temperature of a prototype southwest facing high-rise apartment unit within the ASHRAE 55 adaptive comfort range for a majority of the year, without any mechanical cooling. Since this study proposes the use of natural ventilation for cooling and the typical building life cycle is 30-40 years, the typical weather files have been modified based on accepted global warming projections for increased air temperatures by 2050. Results for the prototype apartment confirm that thermal discomfort with dynamic glazing occurs only for less than 0.7% of the year. However, in the baseline scenario with low-E glass there are up to 7% annual hours of discomfort despite natural ventilation with operable windows and improved air movement with ceiling fans.

Energy Retrofitting Application Research to Achieve Energy Efficiency in Hot-Arid Climates in Residential Buildings: A Case Study of Saudi Arabia

This study aims to present an overview of recent research in building energy-retrofitting strategy applications and analyzing them within the context of hot arid climate regions which is in this case study represented by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The main goal of this research is to do an analytical study of recent research approaches to show where the primary gap in knowledge exists and outline which possible strategies are available that can be applied in future research. Also, the paper focuses on energy retrofitting strategies at a building envelop level. The study is limited to specific measures within the hot arid climate region. Scientific articles were carefully chosen as they met the expression criteria, such as retrofitting, energy-retrofitting, hot-arid, energy efficiency, residential buildings, which helped narrow the research scope. Then the papers were explored through descriptive analysis and justified results within the Saudi context in order to draw an overview of future opportunities from the field of study for the last two decades. The conclusions of the analysis of the recent research confirmed that the field of study had a research shortage on investigating actual applications and testing of newly introduced energy efficiency applications, lack of energy cost feasibility studies and there was also a lack of public awareness. In terms of research methods, it was found that simulation software was a major instrument used in energy retrofitting application research. The main knowledge gaps that were identified included the need for certain research regarding actual application testing; energy retrofitting strategies application feasibility; the lack of research on the importance of how strategies apply first followed by the user acceptance of developed scenarios.

Incorporating Circular Economy into Passive Design Strategies in Tropical Nigeria

The natural environment is in need for an urgent rescue due to dilapidation and recession of resources. Passive design strategies have proven to be one of the effective ways to reduce CO2 emissions and to improve building performance. On the other hand, there is a huge drop in material availability due to poor recycling culture. Consequently, building waste pose environmental hazard due to unrecycled building materials from construction and deconstruction. Buildings are seen to be material banks for a circular economy, therefore incorporating circular economy into passive housing will not only safe guide the climate but also improve resource efficiency. The study focuses on incorporating a circular economy in passive design strategies for an affordable energy and resource efficient residential building in Nigeria. Carbon dioxide (CO2) concentration is still on the increase as buildings are responsible for a significant amount of this emission globally. Therefore, prompt measures need to be taken to combat the effect of global warming and associated threats. Nigeria is rapidly growing in human population, resources on the other hand have receded greatly, and there is an abrupt need for recycling even in the built environment. It is necessary that Nigeria responds to these challenges effectively and efficiently considering building resource and energy. Passive design strategies were assessed using simulations to obtain qualitative and quantitative data which were inferred to case studies as it relates to the Nigeria climate. Building materials were analysed using the ReSOLVE model in order to explore possible recycling phase. This provided relevant information and strategies to illustrate the possibility of circular economy in passive buildings. The study offers an alternative approach, as it is the general principle for the reworking of an economy on ecological lines in passive housing and by closing material loops in circular economy.

A Hygrothermal Analysis and Structural Performance of Wood-Frame Wall Systems with Low-Permeance Exterior Insulation

Increasing the level of exterior insulation in residential buildings is a popular way for improving the thermal characteristic of building enclosure and reducing heat loss. However, the layout and properties of materials composing the wall have a great effect on moisture accumulation within the wall cavity, long-term durability of a wall as well as the structural performance. A one-dimensional hygrothermal modeling has been performed to investigate moisture condensation risks and the drying capacity of standard 2×4 and 2×6 light wood-frame wall assemblies including exterior low-permeance extruded polystyrene (XPS) insulation. The analysis considered two different wall configurations whereby the rigid insulation board was placed either between Oriented Strand Board (OSB) sheathing and the stud or outboard to the structural sheathing. The thickness of the insulation varied between 0 mm and 50 mm and the analysis has been conducted for eight different locations in Canada, covering climate zone 4 through zone 8. Results show that the wall configuration with low-permeance insulation inserted between the stud and OSB sheathing accumulates more moisture within the stud cavity, compared to the assembly with the same insulation placed exterior to the sheathing. On the other hand, OSB moisture contents of the latter configuration were markedly higher. Consequently, the analysis of hygrothermal performance investigated and compared moisture accumulation in both the OSB and stud cavity. To investigate the structural performance of the wall and the effect of soft insulation layer inserted between the sheathing and framing, forty nail connection specimens were tested. Results have shown that both the connection strength and stiffness experience a significant reduction as the insulation thickness increases. These results will be compared with results from a full-scale shear wall tests in order to investigate if the capacity of shear walls with insulated sheathing would experience a similar reduction in structural capacities.

Effective Wind-Induced Natural Ventilation in a Residential Apartment Typology

In India, cooling loads in residential sector is a major contributor to its total energy consumption. Due to the increasing cooling need, the market penetration of air-conditioners is further expected to rise. Natural Ventilation (NV), however, possesses great potential to save significant energy consumption especially for residential buildings in moderate climates. As multifamily residential apartment buildings are designed by repetitive use of prototype designs, deriving individual NV based design prototype solutions for a combination of different wind incidence angles and orientations would provide significant opportunity to address the rise in cooling loads by residential sector. This paper presents the results of NV performance of a selected prototype apartment design with a cluster of four units in Pune, India, and an attempt to improve the NV performance through design modifications. The water table apparatus, a physical modelling tool, is used to study the flow patterns and simulate wind-induced NV performance. Quantification of NV performance is done by post processing images captured from video recordings in terms of percentage of area with good and poor access to ventilation. NV performance of the existing design for eight wind incidence angles showed that of the cluster of four units, the windward units showed good access to ventilation for all rooms, and the leeward units had lower access to ventilation with the bedrooms in the leeward units having the least access. The results showed improved performance in all the units for all wind incidence angles to more than 80% good access to ventilation. Some units showed an additional improvement to more than 90% good access to ventilation. This process of design and performance evaluation improved some individual units from 0% to 100% for good access to ventilation. The results demonstrate the ease of use and the power of the water table apparatus for performance-based design to simulate wind induced NV.  

Application of Sorptive Passive Panels for Reducing Indoor Formaldehyde Level: Effect of Environmental Conditions

Reducing formaldehyde concentration in residential buildings is an important challenge, especially during the summer. In this study, a ceiling tile was used as a sorptive passive panel for formaldehyde removal. The performance of this passive panel was evaluated under different environmental conditions. The results demonstrated that the removal efficiency is comprised between 40% and 71%. Change in the level of relative humidity (30%, 50%, and 75%) had a slight positive effect on the sorption capacity. However, increase in temperature from 21 °C to 26 °C led to approximately 7% decrease in the average formaldehyde removal performance. GC/MS and HPLC analysis revealed the formation of different by-products at low concentrations under extreme environmental conditions. These findings suggest that the passive panel selected for this study holds the potential to be used for formaldehyde removal under various conditions.

Harmonic Pollution Caused by Non-Linear Load: Analysis and Identification

The present paper provides a detailed analysis of prior methods and approaches for non-linear load identification in residential buildings. The main goal of this analysis is to decipher the distorted signals and to estimate the harmonics influence on power systems. We have performed an analytical study of non-linear loads behavior in the residential environment. Simulations have been performed in order to evaluate the distorted rate of the current and follow his behavior. To complete this work, an instrumental platform has been realized to carry out practical tests on single-phase non-linear loads which illustrate the current consumption of some domestic appliances supplied with single-phase sinusoidal voltage. These non-linear loads have been processed and tracked in order to limit their influence on the power grid and to reduce the Joule effect losses. As a result, the study has allowed to identify responsible circuits of harmonic pollution.

Applying Energy Consumption Schedule and Comparing It with Load Shifting Technique in Residential Load

Energy consumption schedule (ECS) technique shifts usage of loads from on peak hours and redistributes them throughout the day according to residents’ operating time preferences. This technique is used as form of indirect control from utility to improve the load curve and hence its load factor and reduce customer’s total electric bill as well. Similarly, load shifting technique achieves ECS purposes but as direct control form applied from utility. In this paper, ECS is simulated twice as optimal constrained mathematical formula, solved by using CVX program in MATLAB® R2013b. First, it is utilized for single residential building with ten apartments to determine max allowable energy consumption per hour for each residential apartment. Then, it is used for single apartment with number of shiftable domestic devices, where operating schedule is deduced using previous simulation output results as constraints. The paper ends by giving differences between ECS technique and load shifting technique via literature and simulation. Based on results assessment, it will be shown whether using ECS or load shifting is more beneficial to both customer and utility.

Energy Saving, Heritage Conserving Renovation Methods in Case of Historical Building Stock

The majority of the building stock of Budapest inner districts was built around the turn of the 19th and 20th century. Although the structural stability of the buildings is not questioned, as the load bearing structures are in sufficient state, the secondary structures are aged, resulting unsatisfactory energetic state. The renovation of these historical buildings requires special methodology and technology: their ornamented facades and custom-made fenestration cannot be insulated or exchanged with conventional solutions without damaging the heritage values. The present paper aims to introduce and systematize the possible technological solutions for heritage respecting energy retrofit in case of a historical residential building stock. Through case study, the possible energy saving potential is also calculated using multiple renovation scenarios.

Nearly Zero-Energy Regulation and Buildings Built with Prefabricated Technology: The Case of Hungary

There is an urgent need nowadays to reduce energy demand and the current level of greenhouse gas emission and use renewable energy sources increase in energy efficiency. On the other hand, the European Union (EU) countries are largely dependent on energy imports and are vulnerable to disruption in energy supply, which may, in turn, threaten the functioning of their current economic structure. Residential buildings represent a significant part of the energy consumption of the building stock. Only a small part of the building stock is exchanged every year, thus it is essential to increase the energy efficiency of the existing buildings. Present paper focuses on the buildings built with industrialized technology only, and their opportunities in the boundaries of nearly zero-energy regulation. Current paper shows the emergence of panel construction method, and past and present of the ‘panel’ problem in Hungary with a short outlook to Europe. The study shows as well as the possibilities for meeting the nearly zero and cost optimized requirements for residential buildings by analyzing the renovation scenarios of an existing residential typology.

Evaluation of Negative Air Ions in Bioaerosol Removal: Indoor Concentration of Airborne Bacterial and Fungal in Residential Building in Qom City, Iran

The present investigation was conducted to detect the type and concentrations of bacterial and fungal bioaerosols in one room (bedroom) of each selected residential building located in different regions of Qom during February 2015 (n=9) to July 2016 (n=11). Moreover, we evaluated the efficiency of negative air ions (NAIs) in bioaerosol reduction in indoor air in residential buildings. In the first step, the mean concentrations of bacterial and fungal in nine sampling sites evaluated in winter were 744 and 579 colony forming units (CFU)/m3, while these values were 1628.6 and 231 CFU/m3 in the 11 sampling sites evaluated in summer, respectively. The most predominant genera between bacterial and fungal in all sampling sites were detected as Micrococcus spp. and Staphylococcus spp. and also, Aspergillus spp. and Penicillium spp., respectively. The 95% and 45% of sampling sites have bacterial and fungal concentrations over the recommended levels, respectively. In the removal step, we achieved a reduction with a range of 38% to 93% for bacterial genera and 25% to 100% for fungal genera by using NAIs. The results suggested that NAI is a highly effective, simple and efficient technique in reducing the bacterial and fungal concentration in the indoor air of residential buildings.

Studying the Effect of Shading by Rooftop PV Panels on Dwellings’ Thermal Performance

Thermal performance is considered to be a key measure in building sustainability. One of the technologies used in the current building sustainable design is the rooftop solar PV power generators. The application of this type of technology has expanded vastly during the last five years in many countries. This paper studies the effect of roof shading developed by the solar PV panels on dwellings’ thermal performance. The analysis in this work is performed by using two types of packages: “AccuRate Sustainability” for rating the energy efficiency of residential building design, and “PVSYST” for the solar PV power system design. The former package is used to calculate the annual heating and cooling load, and the later package is used to evaluate the power production from the roof top PV system. The analysis correlates the electrical energy generated from the PV panels to the change in the heating and cooling load due to roof shading. Different roof orientation, roof inclination, roof insulation, as well as PV panel area are considered in this study. The analysis shows that the drop in energy efficiency due to the shaded area of the roof by PV panels is negligible compared to the energy generated by these panels.

Impact of Flexibility on Residential Buildings in Egypt

There is a critical thin line between freedom of choice and randomness. The distance between imagination and perception and between perception and execution varies depending on numerous factors. While in developed areas residents have the opportunity and abilities to build flexible homes, residents in developing areas create their own dwellings in informal settlements, even though none of them is comfortable at home in the long run. This paper explores three factors: What residents really need, what they do with limited flexibility, and what they do when there are no limits, as in the case of informal settlements. This paper studies alteration to residential buildings and how they connect to the changes in people’s lifecycle in all past cases. This study also examines all approaches to flexibility, focusing on a social approach. The results of this study are based on three practical studies: Interviews with residents in an informal settlement (Eshash Mahfouz in Minya in Egypt), a civil study of buildings in a middle-class district, and a survey of residents from many countries, including Egypt, and interviews with a number of them to determine residents’ needs and the extent of renovations they made or would like to make to their homes.

Effects of the In-Situ Upgrading Project in Afghanistan: A Case Study on the Formally and Informally Developed Areas in Kabul

Cities in Afghanistan have been rapidly urbanized; however, many parts of these cities have been developed with no detailed land use plan or infrastructure. In other words, they have been informally developed without any government leadership. The new government started the In-situ Upgrading Project in Kabul to upgrade roads, the water supply network system, and the surface water drainage system on the existing street layout in 2002, with the financial support of international agencies. This project is an appropriate emergency improvement for living life, but not an essential improvement of living conditions and infrastructure problems because the life expectancies of the improved facilities are as short as 10–15 years, and residents cannot obtain land tenure in the unplanned areas. The Land Readjustment System (LRS) conducted in Japan has good advantages that rearrange irregularly shaped land lots and develop the infrastructure effectively. This study investigates the effects of the In-situ Upgrading Project on private investment, land prices, and residents’ satisfaction with projects in Kart-e-Char, where properties are registered, and in Afshar-e-Silo Lot 1, where properties are unregistered. These projects are located 5 km and 7 km from the CBD area of Kabul, respectively. This study discusses whether LRS should be applied to the unplanned area based on the questionnaire and interview responses of experts experienced in the In-situ Upgrading Project who have knowledge of LRS. The analysis results reveal that, in Kart-e-Char, a lot of private investment has been made in the construction of medium-rise (five- to nine-story) buildings for commercial and residential purposes. Land values have also incrementally increased since the project, and residents are commonly satisfied with the road pavement, drainage systems, and water supplies, but dissatisfied with the poor delivery of electricity as well as the lack of public facilities (e.g., parks and sport facilities). In Afshar-e-Silo Lot 1, basic infrastructures like paved roads and surface water drainage systems have improved from the project. After the project, a few four- and five-story residential buildings were built with very low-level private investments, but significant increases in land prices were not evident. The residents are satisfied with the contribution ratio, drainage system, and small increase in land price, but there is still no drinking water supply system or tenure security; moreover, there are substandard paved roads and a lack of public facilities, such as parks, sport facilities, mosques, and schools. The results of the questionnaire and interviews with the four engineers highlight the problems that remain to be solved in the unplanned areas if LRS is applied—namely, land use differences, types and conditions of the infrastructure still to be installed by the project, and time spent for positive consensus building among the residents, given the project’s budget limitation.

The Survey Research and Evaluation of Green Residential Building Based on the Improved Group Analytical Hierarchy Process Method in Yinchuan

Due to the economic downturn and the deterioration of the living environment, the development of residential buildings as high energy consuming building is gradually changing from “extensive” to green building in China. So, the evaluation system of green building is continuously improved, but the current evaluation work has the following problems: (1) There are differences in the cost of the actual investment and the purchasing power of residents, also construction target of green residential building is single and lacks multi-objective performance development. (2) Green building evaluation lacks regional characteristics and cannot reflect the different regional residents demand. (3) In the process of determining the criteria weight, the experts’ judgment matrix is difficult to meet the requirement of consistency. Therefore, to solve those problems, questionnaires which are about the green residential building for Ningxia area are distributed, and the results of questionnaires can feedback the purchasing power of residents and the acceptance of the green building cost. Secondly, combined with the geographical features of Ningxia minority areas, the evaluation criteria system of green residential building is constructed. Finally, using the improved group AHP method and the grey clustering method, the criteria weight is determined, and a real case is evaluated, which is located in Xing Qing district, Ningxia. A conclusion can be obtained that the professional evaluation for this project and good social recognition is basically the same.

Adaptive Design of Large Prefabricated Concrete Panels Collective Housing

More than half of the urban population in Romania lives today in residential buildings made out of large prefabricated reinforced concrete panels. Since their initial design was made in the 1960’s, these housing units are now being technically and morally outdated, consuming large amounts of energy for heating, cooling, ventilation and lighting, while failing to meet the needs of the contemporary life-style. Due to their widespread use, the design of a system that improves their energy efficiency would have a real impact, not only on the energy consumption of the residential sector, but also on the quality of life that it offers. Furthermore, with the transition of today’s existing power grid to a “smart grid”, buildings could become an active element for future electricity networks by contributing in micro-generation and energy storage. One of the most addressed issues today is to find locally adapted strategies that can be applied considering the 20-20-20 EU policy criteria and to offer sustainable and innovative solutions for the cost-optimal energy performance of buildings adapted on the existing local market. This paper presents a possible adaptive design scenario towards sustainable retrofitting of these housing units. The apartments are transformed in order to meet the current living requirements and additional extensions are placed on top of the building, replacing the unused roof space, acting not only as housing units, but as active solar energy collection systems. An adaptive building envelope is ensured in order to achieve overall air-tightness and an elevator system is introduced to facilitate access to the upper levels.

Applicability of Overhangs for Energy Saving in Existing High-Rise Housing in Different Climates

Upgrading the thermal performance of building envelope of existing residential buildings is an effective way to reduce heat gain or heat loss. Overhang device is a common solution for building envelope improvement as it can cut down solar heat gain and thereby can reduce the energy used for space cooling in summer time. Despite that, overhang can increase the demand for indoor heating in winter due to its function of lowering the solar heat gain. Obviously, overhang has different impacts on energy use in different climatic zones which have different energy demand. To evaluate the impact of overhang device on building energy performance under different climates of China, an energy analysis model is built up in a computer-based simulation program known as DesignBuilder based on the data of a typical high-rise residential building. The energy simulation results show that single overhang is able to cut down around 5% of the energy consumption of the case building in the stand-alone situation or about 2% when the building is surrounded by other buildings in regions which predominantly rely on space cooling though it has no contribution to energy reduction in cold region. In regions with cold summer and cold winter, adding overhang over windows can cut down around 4% and 1.8% energy use with and without adjoining buildings, respectively. The results indicate that overhang might not an effective shading device to reduce the energy consumption in the mixed climate or cold regions.

Comparison of Wind Fragility for Window System in the Simplified 10 and 15-Story Building Considering Exposure Category

Window system in high rise building is occasionally subjected to an excessive wind intensity, particularly during typhoon. The failure of window system did not affect overall safety of structural performance; however, it could endanger the safety of the residents. In this paper, comparison of fragility curves for window system of two residential buildings was studied. The probability of failure for individual window was determined with Monte Carlo Simulation method. Then, lognormal cumulative distribution function was used to represent the fragility. The results showed that windows located on the edge of leeward wall were more susceptible to wind load and the probability of failure for each window panel increased at higher floors.