Hide/Show Apps

Bioclimatic interventions for reducing cooling energy demand in hot and humid climates

Dönmez, Burak
While development of industry and science has been tremendous, population has also increased dramatically in the last centuries. As a consequence, unchecked consumption of energy mainly based on fossil fuels is the main culprit for triggering climate change worldwide. Meanwhile, an impressive amount of energy is being used for just cooling or heating the existing building stock. The need for energy can be reduced by adopting traditional bioclimatic measures that can be tested for their appropriateness through building performance simulations. To this end, collection and evaluation of empirical data through parametric design simulations can enable predictions about the adaptability and appropriateness of different bioclimatic interventions/features in different buildings in different climates. For instance, predictions about the impact of all or a combination of some interventions on energy performance of buildings may be helpful for optimizing the retrofit design. This approach was adopted to provide a design process where the parametric variations in the building design are made according to the building performance simulation outputs. The aim of this research was to determine, test, select and implement the most effective passive cooling strategies in retrofitting a local government building located in the hot and humid climate of Alanya, in Turkey. To realize this purpose, the municipality building was visited and observations were made regarding the current physical and thermal conditions and the cooling equipment used. The architectural drawings and relevant information were obtained in order to model the building and simulate it for its energy use, with the DesignBuilder software. Appropriate bioclimatic interventions were then integrated one by one and simulated for their impacts; and finally, the most efficient ones were integrated together to test their combined effect in reducing the cooling energy used. It was determined that by using bioclimatic measure to reduce the cooling energy demand, it was possible to achieve 70.23% savings in energy required to cool the building.