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Article

Building Envelope Thermal Defects in Existing and Under-Construction Housing in the UAE; Infrared Thermography Diagnosis and Qualitative Impacts Analysis

Architectural Engineering Department, College of Engineering, United Arab Emirates University, Al Ain 15551, United Arab Emirates
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Academic Editors: Ali Bahadori-Jahromi and Jun-Tae Kim
Sustainability 2021, 13(4), 2230; https://doi.org/10.3390/su13042230
Received: 9 December 2020 / Revised: 15 January 2021 / Accepted: 25 January 2021 / Published: 19 February 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue ZEMCH International Research 2020)
The built environment accounts for the highest share of energy use and carbon emissions, particularly in emerging economies, caused by population growth and fast urbanization. This phenomenon is further exacerbated under extreme climatic conditions such as those of the United Arab Emirates, the context of this study, where the highest energy share is consumed in buildings, mostly used in the residential sector for cooling purposes. Despite efforts to curb energy consumption through building energy efficiency measures in new construction, substantial existing building stock and construction quality are left out. Construction defects, particularly in the building envelope, are recognized to affect its thermal integrity. This paper aims, first, to detect through thermography field investigation audit construction defects bearing thermal impacts in existing and under-construction residential buildings. Then, through a qualitative analysis, we identify the resulting energy, cost, and health impacts of the identified defects. Results indicate that lack or discontinuity of insulation, thermal bridging through building elements, blockwork defects, and design change discrepancies are the recurrent building and construction defects. The qualitative review analysis indicates substantial energy loss due to lack of insulation, thermal bridging with cost and health implications, while beneficial mitigation measures include consideration of building envelope retrofitting, skilled workmanship, and the call for quality management procedures during construction. View Full-Text
Keywords: building envelope thermal defects; construction defects; thermography; qualitative analysis; new construction; existing building; construction quality; thermal bridging; impacts; energy; housing; UAE building envelope thermal defects; construction defects; thermography; qualitative analysis; new construction; existing building; construction quality; thermal bridging; impacts; energy; housing; UAE
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MDPI and ACS Style

Tabet Aoul, K.A.; Hagi, R.; Abdelghani, R.; Syam, M.; Akhozheya, B. Building Envelope Thermal Defects in Existing and Under-Construction Housing in the UAE; Infrared Thermography Diagnosis and Qualitative Impacts Analysis. Sustainability 2021, 13, 2230. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13042230

AMA Style

Tabet Aoul KA, Hagi R, Abdelghani R, Syam M, Akhozheya B. Building Envelope Thermal Defects in Existing and Under-Construction Housing in the UAE; Infrared Thermography Diagnosis and Qualitative Impacts Analysis. Sustainability. 2021; 13(4):2230. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13042230

Chicago/Turabian Style

Tabet Aoul, Kheira Anissa, Rahma Hagi, Rahma Abdelghani, Monaya Syam, and Boshra Akhozheya. 2021. "Building Envelope Thermal Defects in Existing and Under-Construction Housing in the UAE; Infrared Thermography Diagnosis and Qualitative Impacts Analysis" Sustainability 13, no. 4: 2230. https://doi.org/10.3390/su13042230

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