A Design Framework for Integrated Design and Control Strategies in Energy Efficient Buildings

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Virginia Tech

This research proposes a computer evaluation model that assists architects and designers in producing buildings with low energy consumption. The model is based on computer-designer interaction. Here, the designer suggests a range of design alternatives, and, in turn, the computer evaluation model generates a matrix of design solutions and performs various environmental simulations. The performances of the various design solutions then analyzed by a statistical analysis package that derives relationships. These relationships explain the impact that the different building components have on energy consumption. The relationships are represented in the form of statistical relations and interactive data charts.

The evaluation model was tested and used to support new ventilation strategies for the Beliveau House in Blacksburg, Virginia. The designer of this house implemented strategies for integrating solar radiation, thermal mass, thermal insulation, and air ventilation to conserve energy. A field study and computer simulation were conducted to monitor the actual performance of the house and to validate the evaluation model results.

Based on the evaluation model results, this research suggests new direct and indirect ventilation control strategies to reduce cooling energy and to improve comfort. The research also suggests general design guidelines to improve the energy performance of buildings and to enhance thermal comfort. These design guidelines are based on a holistic view of integrating the building components that has significant impact on buildings thermal performance.

integration, energy conservation, building evaluation, Simulation, dehumidification