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Buildings, Volume 12, Issue 3 (March 2022) – 134 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Building energy consumption has drawn increasing attention in recent decades. Thermal transmittance is not only a code-enforced parameter during the design and retrofit phase of building assemblies, but also strongly related to the accuracy of whole-building energy modeling. This study is focused on comparing methods to measure the building envelope thermal transmittance, both in laboratory and for in situ measurement. Typical research studies related to the hot box test method, the heat flow meter method, and the infrared thermography method are compared. This paper provides a state-of-the-art review of the up-to-date measurement methods for building envelope thermal transmittance. View this paper
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Article
Modeling the Constraints to the Utilization of the Internet of Things in Managing Supply Chains of Off-Site Construction: An Approach toward Sustainable Construction
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 388; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030388 - 21 Mar 2022
Viewed by 606
Abstract
Despite persistent calls for cleaner production and improved automation of construction processes, the adoption of the Internet of Things (IoT) in managing the supply chains of off-site construction businesses has been discouraged due to various constraints. This paper methodically identifies and prioritizes the [...] Read more.
Despite persistent calls for cleaner production and improved automation of construction processes, the adoption of the Internet of Things (IoT) in managing the supply chains of off-site construction businesses has been discouraged due to various constraints. This paper methodically identifies and prioritizes the crucial factors that impede the application of the Internet of Things (IoT) in off-site construction. Content analysis and an expert-based evaluation strategy were used to identify and evaluate the constraints affecting Internet of Things adoption in off-site construction. The ISM, MICMAC, and DEMATEL techniques were used to analyze the data. This study identifies the “lack of clear strategy for governing IoT utilization in supply chain management” as the most significant factor that impedes the application of the Internet of Things (IoT) in off-site construction businesses. The outcomes also provide a rich source of insights into off-site construction businesses to clearly recognize the implications of utilizing IoT technologies in managing the supply chains of businesses and what to expect when applying IoT technologies and solutions. While this paper advocates for improved green construction practices, cleaner production, and automation in the construction industry, it has set the stage for integrating IoT technologies in the supply chain management of off-site construction businesses. Full article
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Article
Seismic Fragility of a Multi-Frame Box-Girder Bridge Influenced by Seismic Excitation Angles and Column Height Layouts
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 387; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030387 - 21 Mar 2022
Viewed by 534
Abstract
Curved multi-frame box-girder bridges with hinges are widely used in the United States due to the large spanning capacity, construction simplification and construction cost economy. This type of bridge frequently has the characteristics of column height asymmetry, adjacent bridge frames vibrating discrepancy. The [...] Read more.
Curved multi-frame box-girder bridges with hinges are widely used in the United States due to the large spanning capacity, construction simplification and construction cost economy. This type of bridge frequently has the characteristics of column height asymmetry, adjacent bridge frames vibrating discrepancy. The combination of curved shape and random seismic excitation angles could aggravate the irregularity of the structural seismic response. In this study, an OpenSees model is established for an example bridge, and the hinge is taken as a key component to observe. The impacts of seismic excitation angles and column height layouts on fragility are investigated through the comparison of the fragility curves. The conclusions list the most unfavorable seismic excitation angles corresponding to the fragilities of bridge system, plug-type concrete elements in hinges, hinge restrainers, columns, abutment bearings as well as the secondary components, respectively. The symmetrical column height layout is proved to be beneficial to mitigate the damage risks of restrainers in intermediate hinges and reduce the fragility of the bridge system. This study can provide a reference for the rapid assessment of the fragile position and damage degree of bridges through structural configuration and shape, as well as the seismic excitation angle. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Advances in Dynamics of Building Structures)
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Article
Passengers’ Sensitivity and Adaptive Behaviors to Health Risks in the Subway Microenvironment: A Case Study in Nanjing, China
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 386; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030386 - 21 Mar 2022
Viewed by 645
Abstract
Passenger behavior in subways has recently become a matter of great concern, with more attention being paid to the health risks of the subway microenvironment (sub-ME). This paper aimed to provide guidance for subway passengers on better adapting to the health risks presented [...] Read more.
Passenger behavior in subways has recently become a matter of great concern, with more attention being paid to the health risks of the subway microenvironment (sub-ME). This paper aimed to provide guidance for subway passengers on better adapting to the health risks presented by the sub-ME. A questionnaire-based survey was conducted in Nanjing, China, and descriptive analysis and a one-way analysis of variance were performed to understand the sensitivity levels of subway passengers and analyze their adaptive behaviors, based on their sensitivity to sub-ME health risks. The results showed that passengers over 66 years old and those who are frequently sick are more sensitive to the presented health risks. Additionally, passengers traveling for longer and those traveling in rush hours are more sensitive to sub-ME health risks. We also found that individual characteristics, knowledge structure, and information communication all influence passengers’ adaptive behaviors. It was ascertained that those with a positive attitude and those who had previously suffered from environmentally influenced diseases, as well as those who studied an environment-related subject, tended to demonstrate more adaptive behaviors. Moreover, passengers who are very familiar with the subway information communication channels and the related information adapted better to the health risks of the sub-ME. Our findings are beneficial for improving passengers’ adaptability to the health risks presented by the sub-ME and for promoting the sustainable operation of subway systems. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Buildings, Infrastructure and SDGs 2030)
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Article
Modelling Building Stock Energy Consumption at the Urban Level from an Empirical Study
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 385; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030385 - 21 Mar 2022
Viewed by 587
Abstract
Quantifying the energy consumption of buildings is a complex and multi-scale task, with the entire process dependent on input data and urban surroundings. However, most urban energy models do not account for the urban environment. This paper employs a physical-based, bottom-up method to [...] Read more.
Quantifying the energy consumption of buildings is a complex and multi-scale task, with the entire process dependent on input data and urban surroundings. However, most urban energy models do not account for the urban environment. This paper employs a physical-based, bottom-up method to predict urban building operating energy consumption, using imported topography to consider shading effects on buildings. This method has proven to be feasible and aligned well with the benchmark. Research also suggests that commercial and transport buildings have the highest energy use intensity, significantly more than residential and office buildings. Specifically, cooling demands far outweigh heating demands for these building types. Therefore, buildings in the commercial and transportation sectors would receive greater consideration for energy efficiency and improvements to the cooling system would be a priority. Additionally, the method developed for predicting building energy demand at an urban scale can also be replicated in practice. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Building Energy-Saving Technology)
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Article
Quantitative Assessment of the Likelihood of Disputes in PPP Projects Using Fault Tree Analysis
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 384; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030384 - 21 Mar 2022
Viewed by 633
Abstract
Disputes involved in public–private partnership (PPP) projects destroy the relationship between governments and private partners and generate huge losses. To multiply the chances of successfully preventing disputes, a holistic understanding of how a PPP dispute occurs is necessary. This paper contributes to the [...] Read more.
Disputes involved in public–private partnership (PPP) projects destroy the relationship between governments and private partners and generate huge losses. To multiply the chances of successfully preventing disputes, a holistic understanding of how a PPP dispute occurs is necessary. This paper contributes to the PPP dispute studies domain in (1) identifying various contributors that lead to the formation of PPP disputes at different levels, (2) proposing a fault tree (FT) framework of a PPP dispute, and (3) evaluating the likelihood of a PPP dispute and displaying the weakest part of a PPP project. First, three basic components that drive the development of PPP disputes are identified: project uncertainty, opportunistic behaviors, and contractual incompleteness. Second, scenario modeling of PPP disputes through fault tree analysis (FTA) depicts a more intelligible structure of PPP disputes. Furthermore, the fuzzy sets evaluation method was employed to compute the fuzzy occurrence likelihood of a PPP dispute. The results indicate that dispute is inevitable in PPP projects (with an occurrence likelihood of 0.9464). Additionally, opportunism is the dominant dispute inducer in PPPs. Our findings are expected to help PPP participants understand how various drivers contribute to the occurrence likelihood of PPP disputes where past data is inadequate. Then, more cost-efficient and appropriate preventive strategies can be developed based on the assessment to minimize the occurrence of PPP disputes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Construction Management, and Computers & Digitization)
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Editorial
Special Issue “Net-Zero/Positive Energy Buildings and Districts”
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 382; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030382 - 21 Mar 2022
Viewed by 616
Abstract
The important goal of decarbonization of communities and cities has resulted in the emergence of new concepts and implementations of Net-Zero/Positive-Energy Buildings and Districts (NZPEBD) in recent years [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Net-Zero/Positive Energy Buildings and Districts)
Article
Determination of Optimum Building Envelope Parameters of a Room concerning Window-to-Wall Ratio, Orientation, Insulation Thickness and Window Type
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 383; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030383 - 20 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 544
Abstract
The building envelope includes all materials (glazing, external walls, doors, etc.) that separate the conditioned space from the outside environment. Building envelope characteristics significantly influence the energy consumption of buildings. In this study, research was carried out to find optimum building envelope design [...] Read more.
The building envelope includes all materials (glazing, external walls, doors, etc.) that separate the conditioned space from the outside environment. Building envelope characteristics significantly influence the energy consumption of buildings. In this study, research was carried out to find optimum building envelope design parameters, such as insulation thickness, orientation, glazing type, and the window-to-wall ratio of a room, using actual climatic data of two cities with different characteristics according to the Köppen climatic classification. The insulation thickness and the window type that minimizes the net present worth of the building façade over 20 years of a lifetime gave the optimum values. In addition, the effect of the various parameters, such as the infiltration rate through the envelope, room set-point temperature, and the fuel type, on the net present cost was also analyzed. It was found that appropriate selection of windows, orientation, and insulation thickness would lead to a significant reduction in the annual energy consumption. Despite having the lowest initial investment cost, the room with single glazed windows had the highest energy requirement and the net present cost. The building façade with double glazed windows, oriented towards the south-west, yielded the minimum net present cost in both locations. Results showed that the optimum external wall thickness is 9 cm in Hakkari (Dsa—Continental Climate) and 6 cm in Istanbul (Csa—Mild Climate). Full article
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Article
Traffic Planning as a Preliminary Tool in Project Documentation for BIM
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 381; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030381 - 18 Mar 2022
Viewed by 512
Abstract
The paper presents a view on the possibilities of using big data in traffic planning and traffic engineering, which are used in the urban and spatial planning of cities. The question is whether the method of this design activity—especially in feasibility studies, environmental [...] Read more.
The paper presents a view on the possibilities of using big data in traffic planning and traffic engineering, which are used in the urban and spatial planning of cities. The question is whether the method of this design activity—especially in feasibility studies, environmental impact assessments, or documentation for land-use decisions—can be part of Building Information Modelling (BIM). The result of this engineering activity could at the same time be linked to the documentation for building permits, where a number of professional civil engineers are already making full use of the BIM management system. The problem of traffic engineering and traffic planning is related to the need for extensive data, which are usually not available and, if they are, are from different database sources. Very often, however, engineers have to carry these tasks out with traffic surveys. Most often, these data are from transport centres, or from spatial databases of Geographical Information System (GIS) of cities or regions. In addition, in developed cities, detailed data from specialised strategic materials are available from municipal databases at various levels, in addition to the land-use plan that is the guarantor of the city’s development. Based on empirical experience from the creation of the new city centre of Bratislava, the authors present, from more than six years of engineering activity, what different data traffic engineers and planners need, which can be processed and unified to be part of the management system in the future and, thus, assist in the development of linear construction using BIM tools. Full article
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Article
Field Work’s Optimization for the Digital Capture of Large University Campuses, Combining Various Techniques of Massive Point Capture
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 380; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030380 - 18 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 607
Abstract
The aim of the study is to obtain fast digitalization of large urban settings. The data of two university campuses in two cities in northern Spain was captured. Challenges were imposed by the lockdown situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, which limited mobility [...] Read more.
The aim of the study is to obtain fast digitalization of large urban settings. The data of two university campuses in two cities in northern Spain was captured. Challenges were imposed by the lockdown situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, which limited mobility and affected the field work for data readings. The idea was to significantly reduce time spent in the field, using a number of resources, and increasing efficiency as economically as possible. The research design is based on the Design Science Research (DSR) concept as a methodological approach to design the solutions generated by means of 3D models. The digitalization of the campuses is based on the analysis, evolution and optimization of LiDAR ALS points clouds captured by government bodies, which are open access and free. Additional TLS capture techniques were used to complement the clouds, with the study of support of UAV-assisted automated photogrammetric techniques. The results show that with points clouds overlapped with 360 images, produced with a combination of resources and techniques, it was possible to reduce the on-site working time by more than two thirds. Full article
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Article
Critical Factors Affecting Contractors’ Decision to Bid: A Global Perspective
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 379; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030379 - 18 Mar 2022
Viewed by 545
Abstract
Given that project selection is a vital and recurring strategic decision for construction firms, there is a sizeable collection of studies that examine the factors affecting contractors’ decision to bid (d2b). With the aim to provide a global perspective of factors affecting contractors’ [...] Read more.
Given that project selection is a vital and recurring strategic decision for construction firms, there is a sizeable collection of studies that examine the factors affecting contractors’ decision to bid (d2b). With the aim to provide a global perspective of factors affecting contractors’ d2b, this study meta-analytically reviews 24 relevant studies published between 1988 and 2021. The results show that that there are 28 critical factors, and the top five factors are (i) project payment terms, (ii) financial capacity of client, (iii) client’s reputation in the industry, (iv) the history of client’s payments in the past projects, and (v) project size. The heterogeneity test results, which show no statistically significant heterogeneity across the included studies, reinforce the generalisability of the findings to a global context. The research findings have practical implications for construction clients in their procurement of construction services, highlighting the importance of good reputation and payment history. For contractors, they now have access to a list of critical factors from a global perspective in facilitating their d2b decision. There are methodological implications for the research community in guiding future efforts in replicating studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Construction Management, and Computers & Digitization)
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Article
Operational Challenges of Modern Demand-Control Ventilation Systems: A Field Study
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 378; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030378 - 18 Mar 2022
Viewed by 446
Abstract
To maintain proper indoor air quality and increase energy efficiency, a demand-control ventilation (DCV) system has become a popular solution. This paper reports the findings of a field study conducted on the performance of the DCV systems in eight public buildings in southern [...] Read more.
To maintain proper indoor air quality and increase energy efficiency, a demand-control ventilation (DCV) system has become a popular solution. This paper reports the findings of a field study conducted on the performance of the DCV systems in eight public buildings in southern Finland. We conducted the measurements in two stages. In the first stage, we made a site visit and measured the airflow rates in the design operation conditions of the chosen space. For the second stage, we left temperature/humidity data loggers to monitor the thermal conditions during the normal operation mode of the space. The results indicate that, out of the eight studied spaces, only one DCV system was performing according to design specifications. While the systems were operating in a suboptimal way, the flaws in functionality were mostly minor, and none of the sites had perceived indoor-air-quality- and/or thermal-condition-related problems during the time of measurement. Nonetheless, this result shows that the potential benefits of DCV were partially lost due to malfunctioning systems. Additionally, by only monitoring room air temperature (or IAQ) without airflow rate measurements in different operation modes, it is not possible to conclude whether the DCV system works properly or not. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Energy, Physics, Environment, and Systems)
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Article
Optimization of Tuned Liquid Damper Including Different Liquids for Lateral Displacement Control of Single and Multi-Story Structures
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 377; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030377 - 18 Mar 2022
Viewed by 506
Abstract
This study focuses on tuned liquid dampers (TLDs) using liquids with different characteristics optimized with the adaptive harmony search algorithm (AHS). TLDs utilize the characteristic features of the liquid to absorb the dynamic forces entering the structure and benefit from the sloshing movement [...] Read more.
This study focuses on tuned liquid dampers (TLDs) using liquids with different characteristics optimized with the adaptive harmony search algorithm (AHS). TLDs utilize the characteristic features of the liquid to absorb the dynamic forces entering the structure and benefit from the sloshing movement and the spring stiffness created by the liquid mass. TLDs have been optimized to investigate the effect of liquid characteristics on the control by analyzing various liquids. For optimization, the memory consideration ratio (HMCR) and fret width (FW) values were adapted from the classical harmony search (HS) algorithm parameters. The TLDs were used on three types of structure models, such as single-story, 10, and 40 stories. The contribution of the liquid characteristics to the damping performance was investigated by optimizing the minimum displacement under seismic excitation. According to the results, it was understood that the liquid density and kinematic viscosity do not affect single-story structures alone. However, two characteristic features should be evaluated together. As the structure mass increases, the viscosity and density become more prominent. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Building Structures and Seismic Technologies)
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Review
A Review on Research and Development of Healthy Building in China
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 376; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030376 - 18 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 641
Abstract
Healthy buildings are a deep-level development of green buildings, which can effectively help relieve stress and improve occupants’ physical and mental health. In addition, they are is likely to play an important role in preventing the spread of respiratory infectious diseases. Therefore, healthy [...] Read more.
Healthy buildings are a deep-level development of green buildings, which can effectively help relieve stress and improve occupants’ physical and mental health. In addition, they are is likely to play an important role in preventing the spread of respiratory infectious diseases. Therefore, healthy buildings have attracted worldwide attention. This article reviews the research and development of healthy buildings in China. First, it briefly introduces the definition of healthy buildings, the key elements of evaluation standards, energy conservation measures and new technology applications for healthy buildings, and lessons learned from the global outbreak of SARS-CoV-2. Secondly, it presents the milestones of healthy building development and healthy building projects in China, and the benefits of healthy buildings were also discussed. Finally, the differences in the evaluation systems of healthy buildings between China and other countries were analyzed, the problems of the current policy system of healthy buildings in China were identified, and suggestions for future development were provided. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Post-COVID Architecture Research)
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Article
Finite Element Analysis of Frames with Reinforced Concrete Encased Steel Composite Columns
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 375; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030375 - 18 Mar 2022
Viewed by 658
Abstract
Structural frame systems that consists of concrete-encased-steel-embedded composite columns and reinforced concrete beams are typically used in mid-rise to tall buildings. In order to understand their overall structural behavior, a total of 12 frame models with high and low ductility features were constructed [...] Read more.
Structural frame systems that consists of concrete-encased-steel-embedded composite columns and reinforced concrete beams are typically used in mid-rise to tall buildings. In order to understand their overall structural behavior, a total of 12 frame models with high and low ductility features were constructed and analyzed using LS-DYNA software. Two of these models were validated using the results of previously tested frames. The remaining 10 models were studied to predict the behavior of frames with varying concrete strengths, reinforcement configurations, and structural steel sections under vertical and lateral loads. The results were investigated in terms of cracks and failure patterns, load-deflection relationships, energy dissipation, and stiffness degradation. The analytical results indicated that the high ductile frame models showed slightly better lateral load carrying performances compared to low ductility frame models. Moreover, the analytical studies demonstrated that the existence of structural steel in a column, regardless of its cross-sectional shape, was the most important parameter in improving the lateral load carrying capacity of a frame. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Aggregate Concrete Materials in Constructions)
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Article
Printable and Mechanical Performance of 3D Printed Concrete Employing Multiple Industrial Wastes
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 374; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030374 - 17 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 605
Abstract
Three-dimensional concrete printing is a promising technology and attracts the significant attention of research and industry. However, printable and mechanical capacities are required for 3D printable cementitious materials. Moreover, the quantitative analysis methods of printable performance are limited and have low sensitivity. In [...] Read more.
Three-dimensional concrete printing is a promising technology and attracts the significant attention of research and industry. However, printable and mechanical capacities are required for 3D printable cementitious materials. Moreover, the quantitative analysis methods of printable performance are limited and have low sensitivity. In this study, the orthogonal experiment through samples combining 3D concrete printing method with fly ash, silica fume, and ground granulated blast furnace slag was designed to obtain the printable and mechanical property influence of various mix proportions. Furthermore, multiple industrial wastes were utilized to improve material sustainability. Meanwhile, the static and dynamic extrusion pressure measured by the original 3D printing extrudability tester were verified to achieve a high-sensitivity evaluating indicator. Thereby, a novel high-sensitivity quantitative analysis method of printable capacity was established to explore the influence of industrial wastes usage on the printability of 3D printable mortars. The optimum dosage of fly ash, silica fume, and ground granulated blast furnace slag was 20 wt.%, 15 wt.%, and 10 wt.%, respectively, based on printable and mechanical property experiments. Furthermore, the optimum dosage was employed to print the sample and achieved a higher compressive strength (56.3 MPa) than the control cast. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The Impact of Building Materials on Construction Sustainability)
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Article
Experimental Research on the Mechanical Properties and Autogenous Shrinkage of Precast Members Joint Concrete
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 373; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030373 - 17 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 408
Abstract
In the precast building structure, the joint is the key part that affects the mechanical performance of the assembly structure. By selecting coarse and fine fraction aggregate; adding high quality mineral admixture, expansive agent, and water-reducing agent; and optimizing the mixture ratio design, [...] Read more.
In the precast building structure, the joint is the key part that affects the mechanical performance of the assembly structure. By selecting coarse and fine fraction aggregate; adding high quality mineral admixture, expansive agent, and water-reducing agent; and optimizing the mixture ratio design, precast members joint concrete (PMJC) with self-compacting performance, micro-shrinkage, good volume stability, and strength matching with precast concrete is developed. In this study, the PMJC with a water-binder ratio, fly ash, ultra-fine silicon powder, sand rate, expansive agent, and water-reducing agent of 0.38, 30%, 3%, 47.7%, 8%, and 0.7%, respectively, showed a good workability which could meet the conditions of on-site construction. In addition, the strength matched the precast members, and the PMJC had certain ductility and stability, small early contraction, and met the requirements of the joint material. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Innovative Structures and Materials: Analysis, Design and Application)
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Article
Seismic Performance of Panel Connectors with Steel Frame Based on Autoclaved Lightweight Concrete (ALC)
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 372; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030372 - 17 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 486
Abstract
This paper proposes new prefabricated autoclaved lightweight concrete (ALC) connectors which allow limited sliding. The seismic performance of the proposed connectors and a traditional connector (L-hooked bolt) were investigated in depth. Three specimens of full-scale steel frames with ALC panel and connectors were [...] Read more.
This paper proposes new prefabricated autoclaved lightweight concrete (ALC) connectors which allow limited sliding. The seismic performance of the proposed connectors and a traditional connector (L-hooked bolt) were investigated in depth. Three specimens of full-scale steel frames with ALC panel and connectors were subjected to horizontal low-cyclic loading. The failure modes, hysteretic behavior, strength and deterioration of stiffness and energy-dissipating performance of all specimens were analyzed and discussed. The experimental results indicated that the frames of the new connectors were more reliable than the traditional connector. The energy-dissipating capacity of the specimen frames with new connectors increased by 23.0% and 24.4%, and deterioration of stiffness increased by 10.6% and 13.0%. The new ALC panel connectors not only increased elastic stiffness in the early stage, but also provided some stiffness in the elastoplastic and plastic stages. Using relevant construction measures, the frames with new connectors displayed good cooperative behavior and safety reliability. To summarize, the new ALC connectors tested showed excellent performance in resisting seismic loading and had good assembly efficiency and could provide a basis for the development and application of a new type of ALC steel frame connector. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Design and Disaster Mitigation of Engineering Structures)
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Article
Optimal Control Strategies for Demand Response in Buildings under Penetration of Renewable Energy
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 371; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030371 - 17 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 510
Abstract
The penetration rates of intermittent renewable energies such as wind and solar energy have been increasing in power grids, often leading to a massive peak-to-valley difference in the net load demand, known as a “duck curve”. The power demand and supply should remain [...] Read more.
The penetration rates of intermittent renewable energies such as wind and solar energy have been increasing in power grids, often leading to a massive peak-to-valley difference in the net load demand, known as a “duck curve”. The power demand and supply should remain balanced in real-time, however, traditional power plants generally cannot output a large range of variable loads to balance the demand and supply, resulting in the overgeneration of solar and wind energy in the grid. Meanwhile, the power generation hours of the plant are forced to be curtailed, leading to a decrease in energy efficiency. Building demand response (DR) is considered as a promising technology for the collaborative control of energy supply and demand. Conventionally, building control approaches usually consider the minimization of total energy consumption as the optimization objective function; relatively few control methods have considered the balance of energy supply and demand under high renewable energy penetration. Thus, this paper proposes an innovative DR control approach that considers the energy flexibility of buildings. First, based on an energy flexibility quantification framework, the energy flexibility capacity of a typical office building is quantified; second, according to energy flexibility and a predictive net load demand curve of the grid, two DR control strategies are designed: rule-based and prediction-based DR control strategies. These two proposed control strategies are validated based on scenarios of heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems with and without an energy storage tank. The results show that 24–55% of the building’s total load can be shifted from the peak load time to the valley load time, and that the duration is over 2 h, owing to the utilization of energy flexibility and the implementation of the proposed DR controls. The findings of this work are beneficial for smoothing the net load demand curve of a grid and improving the ability of a grid to adopt renewable energies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Topic Smart Energy Systems)
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Article
Influence of Building Density on Outdoor Thermal Environment of Residential Area in Cities with Different Climatic Zones in China—Taking Guangzhou, Wuhan, Beijing, and Harbin as Examples
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 370; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030370 - 17 Mar 2022
Viewed by 398
Abstract
Outdoor wind and thermal environments in residential areas are greatly affected by the distance between buildings. A short distance is conducive to providing shade, and a long distance can enhance ventilation between buildings. In this study, four cities with different latitudes in China [...] Read more.
Outdoor wind and thermal environments in residential areas are greatly affected by the distance between buildings. A short distance is conducive to providing shade, and a long distance can enhance ventilation between buildings. In this study, four cities with different latitudes in China (Guangzhou, Wuhan, Beijing, and Harbin) were selected to research the relationship between the distance between buildings and thermal environments of residential areas. The results show that (1) when the distance between buildings is small, it is easier for wind paths to form. Wind paths can strengthen the wind velocity. When the distance between buildings exceeds 40–50 m, the building density is small, the building’s resistance to the wind becomes smaller and smaller, and the wind speed will gradually increase. (2) When the distance is in the range of 20–50 m, the MRT (mean radiant temperature) rise rate of each city is similar. For every 10 m increase in the distance between buildings, the MRT increases by about 1.25 °C. (3) D = 50 m (D/H = 1.19) is an inflection point. When D is less than 50 m, within the range of 20–50 m, the smaller the D is, the lower the SET* (standard effective temperature) is, while when D is more than 50 m, the opposite trend is observed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Building Energy-Saving Technology)
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Article
Evaluation of Social Responsibility of Major Municipal Road Infrastructure—Case Study of Zhengzhou 107 Auxiliary Road Project
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 369; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030369 - 17 Mar 2022
Viewed by 554
Abstract
Social responsibility plays an important role in the sustainable development of major municipal road infrastructure. In this study, a major municipal road infrastructure social responsibility (MMRISR) evaluation indicator system is developed for the comprehensive evaluation of social responsibility. Questionnaires and expert interviews were [...] Read more.
Social responsibility plays an important role in the sustainable development of major municipal road infrastructure. In this study, a major municipal road infrastructure social responsibility (MMRISR) evaluation indicator system is developed for the comprehensive evaluation of social responsibility. Questionnaires and expert interviews were used to screen the initial indicators of the proposed system. Then, 24 indicators were selected from four dimensions to establish an MMRISR evaluation indicator system. The fuzzy analytic hierarchy process was employed to calculate the weights of each indicator. Finally, the Zhengzhou 107 Auxiliary Road Project was adopted as a case study to test the reliability of the proposed evaluation system. The contribution of this study lies in the provision of a novel indicator system for the social responsibility evaluation of major municipal road infrastructures, thus improving the science of project establishment and decision-making. The proposed social responsibility system can provide an efficient decision-making tool for social responsibility governance, fundamentally promoting the sustainable development of major municipal road infrastructures and the achievement of certain sustainable development goals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Collection Buildings, Infrastructure and SDGs 2030)
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Article
Effective Jet-Grouting Application for Improving the State of Deformation of Landmarks
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 368; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030368 - 17 Mar 2022
Viewed by 519
Abstract
The problem of improving the state of deformation of landmarks is an important aspect when performing civil services, because they have a historical interest and bring symbolisms which relate to an event of particular interest for the community. The engineering–geological surveys, technical evaluation [...] Read more.
The problem of improving the state of deformation of landmarks is an important aspect when performing civil services, because they have a historical interest and bring symbolisms which relate to an event of particular interest for the community. The engineering–geological surveys, technical evaluation and operational suitability of landmarks of national significance are performed to improve the state of deformation. The conducted analytical assessment of landslide hazard slope stability in the RocScience Slide computational complex shows that in the presence of landslide prevention works, and the stability coefficient is increased by a factor of 1.21–1.37. The regularities of deformation and strength parameters of the soil–cement obtained during the jet-grouting application indicated an increase in strength gain of amplifier elements by an average of 1.6–4.0 times. This proves the effectiveness of the jet-grouting application for improving the state of deformation of landmarks of national significance. Full article
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Article
The Participation of Older People in the Development of Group Housing in The Netherlands: A Study on the Involvement of Residents from Organisational and End-User Perspectives
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 367; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030367 - 17 Mar 2022
Viewed by 534
Abstract
The establishment of new housing initiatives for older people begins with the participation of (future) residents. This study explored how participation is experienced by both facilitators and (future) residents and what lessons are learned regarding the facilitation of meaningful participation. Participation was studied [...] Read more.
The establishment of new housing initiatives for older people begins with the participation of (future) residents. This study explored how participation is experienced by both facilitators and (future) residents and what lessons are learned regarding the facilitation of meaningful participation. Participation was studied through semi-structured interviews and focus group sessions from the perspective of 34 (future) residents and facilitators involved in participation processes in a diverse set of four housing projects from the Netherlands. The results focused on three phases: the initiation phase, the concepting and development phase, and the transition towards an established form of group housing. From the outset of such processes, it was important to involve all relevant stakeholders and to create a shared vision about the participation process. Discussions in small groups, the use of references, creative elements, and the creation of the right atmosphere were experienced as valuable during the concepting and design phase. In the third phase, the role of the organisation and residents needed to be discussed again. Participation should be a continuous process, during which trust, communication and having an open attitude are key. This study showed how innovative approaches can contribute to the creation of an environment in which older people can impact the actual design of housing, and make it more inclusive. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Architectural Design, Urban Science, and Real Estate)
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Review
Climate-Adaptive Façades with an Air Chamber
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 366; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030366 - 16 Mar 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 738
Abstract
The development of energy-efficient technologies at all stages of a building’s life cycle is essential to achieving sustainable development goals. The object of the study is climate-adaptive façade structures with air gaps in the form of a Trombe wall and a double-skin façade. [...] Read more.
The development of energy-efficient technologies at all stages of a building’s life cycle is essential to achieving sustainable development goals. The object of the study is climate-adaptive façade structures with air gaps in the form of a Trombe wall and a double-skin façade. Cases using phase-change materials (PCM) and photovoltaic modules (PV) in climate-adaptive structures are analyzed separately. The research method is aimed to review and analyze the energy-saving potential from integrating the Trombe wall or double-skin façade in buildings. The work systematizes full-scale, physical, and mathematical experiments. Articles from Scopus and Web of Science systems from 2001 to 2022 inclusive were subject to consideration. The article presents a statistical analysis given by the scientific community on the current topic’s dynamics. The study’s significance is characterized by a lack of knowledge on the behavior of the mentioned façade systems in various climate zones and for different buildings types. The results have shown that comprehensive studies on the investigated systems are significant and can serve for further designs and energy efficiency improvements. For the first time, a scientometric analysis of articles on the topic “Climate-adaptive façades” was compiled. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Energy, Physics, Environment, and Systems)
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Article
Human Close Contact Behavior-Based Interventions for COVID-19 Transmission
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 365; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030365 - 16 Mar 2022
Viewed by 568
Abstract
COVID-19 has threatened human lives. Countries have implemented various interventions such as vaccination, mask-wearing, body temperature screening, and isolation. However, the effectiveness of single and combined interventions has not yet been accurately analyzed. In this study, an improved SEIR model considering both real [...] Read more.
COVID-19 has threatened human lives. Countries have implemented various interventions such as vaccination, mask-wearing, body temperature screening, and isolation. However, the effectiveness of single and combined interventions has not yet been accurately analyzed. In this study, an improved SEIR model considering both real human indoor close contact behaviors and susceptibility to COVID-19 was established. Taking Hong Kong as an example, a quantitative assessment of the relationship between the efficiency of single and combined interventions and implementation time and intensity was carried out. The results showed that the infection risk (one-hour close contact with an infected person) of COVID-19 of students, workers, and non-workers/non-students was 3.1%, 8.7%, and 13.6%, respectively. Workplace closures were more effective among built environment interventions. If mask-wearing was mandatorily required in schools, workplaces, supermarkets, shopping centers, and public transport, COVID-19 could not be totally restricted. Workers should be prioritized for vaccination, followed by non-workers/non-students and students. Among all interventions, reducing close contact rate and increasing vaccination rate were better interventions. There was no COVID-19 outbreak (basic reproduction number R0 = 1) if the close contact reduction rate was 59.9% or the vaccination rate reached 89.5%. The results may provide scientific support for COVID-19 prevention and control. Full article
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Article
A User-Centered Evaluation of Wayfinding in Outpatient Units of Public Hospitals in Malaysia: UMMC as a Case Study
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 364; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030364 - 16 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 517
Abstract
The difficulty of finding one’s way in a complex structure has been a long-standing issue of many buildings with highly institutionalized functions. This has been especially observed in hospital buildings as an issue that can cause various adverse outcomes for both the institution [...] Read more.
The difficulty of finding one’s way in a complex structure has been a long-standing issue of many buildings with highly institutionalized functions. This has been especially observed in hospital buildings as an issue that can cause various adverse outcomes for both the institution and the user. Therefore, regular evaluation of the existing wayfinding system and its efficacy is needed. This study aimed to evaluate the wayfinding system efficacy in an outpatient unit of a Malaysian public hospital in order to provide information that could help guide future upgrade initiatives for existing healthcare facilities’ wayfinding systems. This study employed a user survey questionnaire to evaluate the wayfinding system currently in use and investigate users’ needs for a better wayfinding system. The statistical analysis of the gathered data indicated a higher than average level of dissatisfaction regarding the existing wayfinding system. The findings of the study suggest the need for an upgrade in the physical environment. Furthermore, the results of this study suggest the need to devise a set of guidelines to be employed when designing wayfinding systems in Malaysia’s public hospitals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Architectural Design, Urban Science, and Real Estate)
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Article
Immersive Technology Implementation in the Construction Industry: Modeling Paths of Risk
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 363; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030363 - 16 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 635
Abstract
The purposes of this paper are to identify risk factors impacting the successful implementation of immersive reality technology (ImT) in the construction industry, analyze these risk factors (impact and probability), assess the relationships among different categories of risk factors, and provide recommendations to [...] Read more.
The purposes of this paper are to identify risk factors impacting the successful implementation of immersive reality technology (ImT) in the construction industry, analyze these risk factors (impact and probability), assess the relationships among different categories of risk factors, and provide recommendations to improve ImT implementation. A literature review, a pilot test based on expert interviews, and a questionnaire survey were used. First, the risk factors of ImT applications were identified by consulting the relevant literature on virtual reality, mixed reality, and augmented reality; these were subsequently grouped into five categories—technology, operation, individual/worker, investment, and external. Next, a questionnaire survey was designed and distributed to relevant construction practitioners in South Africa (usable response = 175). Twenty-one ImT implementation risk factors were identified, and risk criticality scores ranged from 2.02 to 3.18. High investment cost, the need for extensive worker training, and the possible introduction of new risks for workers were rated as significant risks. The present study confirmed three statistically significant hypothesized risk paths—namely, those between external issues and individual/worker’s concerns, between external issues and investment limitations, and between individual/worker’s concerns and technology concerns. The present study contributes to the literature regarding the adoption of construction technology by providing a list of critical risk factors that could be used to develop models and tools for assessing ImT adoption and guide practitioners involved in integrating ImTs. Full article
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Article
Towards an Interoperable Approach for Modelling and Managing Smart Building Data: The Case of the CESI Smart Building Demonstrator
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 362; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030362 - 16 Mar 2022
Viewed by 839
Abstract
Buildings have a significant impact on energy consumption and carbon emissions. Smart buildings are deemed to play a crucial role in improving the energy performance of buildings and cities. Managing a smart building requires the modelling of data concerning smart systems and components. [...] Read more.
Buildings have a significant impact on energy consumption and carbon emissions. Smart buildings are deemed to play a crucial role in improving the energy performance of buildings and cities. Managing a smart building requires the modelling of data concerning smart systems and components. While there is a significant amount of research on optimising building energy using the smart building concept, there is a dearth of studies investigating the modelling and management of smart systems’ data, which is the starting point for establishing the necessary digital environment for representing a smart building. This study aimed to develop and test a solution for modelling and managing smart building information using an industry foundation classes (IFCs)-based BIM process. A conceptual model expressed in the SysML language was proposed to define a smart building. Five BIM approaches were identified as potential ‘prototypes’ for representing and exchanging smart building information. The fidelity of each approach is checked through a BIM-based validation process using an open-source visualisation platform. The different prototypes were also assessed using a multi-criteria comparison method to identify the preferred approach for modelling and managing smart building information. The preferred approach was prototyped and tested in a use case focused on building energy consumption monitoring to evaluate its ability to manage and visualise the smart building data. The use case was applied in a real case study using a full-scale demonstrator, namely, the ‘Nanterre 3’ (N3) smart building located at the CESI campus in Paris-Nanterre. The findings demonstrated that an open BIM format in the form of IFCs could achieve adequate modelling of smart building data without information loss. Future extensions of the proposed approach were finally outlined. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue AI-Aided Carbon Engineering in the AEC Industry)
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Article
Investigating Electromagnetic Shielding Properties of Building Materials Doped with Carbon Nanomaterials
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 361; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030361 - 16 Mar 2022
Viewed by 470
Abstract
Electromagnetic (EM) shielding has become an essential element in the modern world alongside the increased use of electronic products and telecommunication equipment. We are surrounded by electromagnetic fields that have inevitably become formidable in our lives. It is possible to absorb EM waves [...] Read more.
Electromagnetic (EM) shielding has become an essential element in the modern world alongside the increased use of electronic products and telecommunication equipment. We are surrounded by electromagnetic fields that have inevitably become formidable in our lives. It is possible to absorb EM waves by adding materials. Researches have focused the addition of different additives into the cement based mixture to increase the Electromagnetic (EM) shielding. This study aims to investigate the performance of carbon nanomaterial on mechanical, electromagnetic shielding properties of composite. Hence, samples were produced using obtained cement composites. After 28 days of curing, ultrasonic pulse velocity, flexural and compressive strength, water absorption tests and electromagnetic shielding were implemented for samples. As a result of this research, it was concluded that electromagnetic shielding was formed as the percentage carbon nanotube contribution increased, and electromagnetic pollution was partially prevented. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Building Materials, and Repair & Renovation)
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Article
Influence of Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose Dosage on the Mechanical Properties of 3D Printable Mortars with and without Fiber Reinforcement
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 360; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030360 - 16 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 689
Abstract
Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose (HPMC) is one of the most frequently used viscosity modifying admixtures in 3D printable cement-based materials. In this study, the effects of HPMC dosage on the mechanical properties of 3D printable cement-based mortars were investigated. For this purpose, mortar mixtures with [...] Read more.
Hydroxypropyl Methylcellulose (HPMC) is one of the most frequently used viscosity modifying admixtures in 3D printable cement-based materials. In this study, the effects of HPMC dosage on the mechanical properties of 3D printable cement-based mortars were investigated. For this purpose, mortar mixtures with and without micro steel fibers containing three different HPMC dosages (0%, 0.15%, and 0.30% by weight of cement) were produced. Reliant on the HPMC dosage, heat flow and cumulative heat curves were obtained. At the end of 7 and 28 days of standard curing, flexural, compressive, and shear bond strengths, as well as flexural toughness, were measured. Additionally, porosity values were obtained on molded, single-layer, and three-layer printed specimens. The results showed that the increase in HPMC dosage prolonged the setting times and decreased the heat release. Moreover, the porosity values increased with an increase in the HPMC dosage and the number of printed layers. All mechanical properties were drastically decreased with the use of HPMC. The decrements were more significant at the first 0.15% HPMC dosage and the shear bond strengths. Prolonging the curing period from 7 to 28 days did not lead to meaningful recovery in the mechanical properties. The negative effects of HPMC on flexural and shear bond performances were more pronounced in fiber-reinforced mortars. Full article
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Article
Design of X-Concentric Braced Steel Frame Systems Using an Equivalent Stiffness in a Modal Elastic Analysis
Buildings 2022, 12(3), 359; https://doi.org/10.3390/buildings12030359 - 15 Mar 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 482
Abstract
In this work, a general method for the design of concentric braced steel frames (CBF) with active tension diagonal bracings, applicable to single- and multi-storey structures, is presented. The method is based on the use of an elastic modal analysis with a response [...] Read more.
In this work, a general method for the design of concentric braced steel frames (CBF) with active tension diagonal bracings, applicable to single- and multi-storey structures, is presented. The method is based on the use of an elastic modal analysis with a response spectrum, which is carried out using an appropriate modified elastic stiffness of diagonal bracings. The reliability of the proposed method is validated through the analysis of significant case studies, making a series of numerical comparisons carrying out time-history non-linear dynamic analysis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Seismic Design of Building Structures)
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