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Peer-Review Record

The Integration of Vacuum Insulated Glass in Unitized Façade for the Development of Innovative Lightweight and Highly Insulating Energy Efficient Building Envelope—The Results of Eensulate Façade System Design

Reviewer 1: Anonymous
Reviewer 2: Anonymous
Received: 18 August 2020 / Revised: 17 September 2020 / Accepted: 22 September 2020 / Published: 24 September 2020

Round 1

Reviewer 1 Report

This paper presents the optimization process and results through system design simulation to achieve the integrated target performance of the vacuum window and curtain wall junction profile during the entire research on developing a lightweight high insulation curtain wall system for the era of zero energy buildings. The process of deriving the optimal system is described by setting target values for the insulation performance of the vacuum window and the entire system, and by proceeding step by step various designs such as the shape and material of the vacuum window and the joint profile, which are the core parts, and the construction method to achieve this. At this time, the criteria for determining the quantitative performance targets for each step were performed through a two-dimensional heat conduction analysis program.

Basically, it is judged that the systematic design process is well described from the review of the applicability of the profile released in the existing market in the initial stage to the final new profile design plan considering architectural aesthetics and replacement strategy. 

However, although it is common for this journal to focus on the design process, it is considered necessary to present as much quantitative evidence as possible for the thermal performance evaluation results, which are the key criteria for design judgment at each stage. There is hardly any mention of input conditions, evaluation methods and tools, and property values ​​for thermal performance evaluation. Due to the absence of quantitative physical data, it is difficult to evaluate whether the results of the evaluation are reasonable and accurate. Therefore, please describe the core evaluation methods for all simulations, such as the evaluation tools and input conditions used for thermal performance evaluation, in the text.

The following is a request for some minor amendments to the text.

  • Please clearly state the purpose of this paper in the introduction of Chapter 1.
  • Insulation target values set in the text, such as 0.3 or 0.641 W/wqm.K, are currently very difficult to achieve in general. It is probably judged as the difference according to the boundary conditions of the analysis process. Therefore, it is necessary to specify which standards are the results derived from NFRC or ISO, etc.
  • The vacuum level of VIG is also a very important influence variable on the insulation performance. Please also specify the quantitative value for this.
  • In this paper, the U-value is described as "transmittnace". Please unify them in clear terms to avoid confusion with optical transmission.
  • In this paper, the U-value is described as just "transmittnace". In order to avoid confusion with optical transmittance, please unify it with clear terms such as "thermal transmittance or thermal conductance or thermal resisitance etc.".
  • Corrected a typo in line 177 on page 5 "Figure -2-bError ..."
  • Page 7 Line 203: U-value according to sealant thickness in Table 3 needs to be clearly marked (Sealant to 15 -> 0.641, 25 -> 0.62)
  • Express the image in Figure 5 by rotating it so that it looks consistent, as in Figures 1-4.
  • In Figure 10, the thermal analysis result image for TGU is also added and complemented so that it can be consistently compared with Figures 1-5 and 9 above.

Author Response

Dear reviewer,

thanking for your observations and suggestions to improve the impact of the paper, I resume the corrections addressed by your review:

  • Please clearly state the purpose of this paper in the introduction of Chapter 1.

A description of the purpose of the paper has been added (from line 73 to line 78)

  • Insulation target values set in the text, such as 0.3 or 0.641 W/wqm.K, are currently very difficult to achieve in general. It is probably judged as the difference according to the boundary conditions of the analysis process. Therefore, it is necessary to specify which standards are the results derived from NFRC or ISO, etc.

In Section 2.2 "Methods" has been added a paragraph to specify the norm of reference (EN ISO 10077-2 and ISO 10211), software (Therm), parameters considered (from line 173 to line 205) and main process used (from line 176 to line 208).

  • The vacuum level of VIG is also a very important influence variable on the insulation performance. Please also specify the quantitative value for this.

An additional description of the vacuum pressure after evacuation and vacuum pressure after 20 years of lifetime has been underlined (from line 96 to line 97)

  • In this paper, the U-value is described as just "transmittnace". In order to avoid confusion with optical transmittance, please unify it with clear terms such as "thermal transmittance or thermal conductance or thermal resisitance etc.".

The term "transmittance" has been substituted with "thermal transmittance" (lines 22, 43, 218, 220, 226, 230, 240, 242, 245, 293, 351)

  • Corrected a typo in line 177 on page 5 "Figure -2-bError ..."

Checked, now it should be fixed (new line 216)

  • Page 7 Line 203: U-value according to sealant thickness in Table 3 needs to be clearly marked (Sealant to 15 -> 0.641, 25 -> 0.62)

All the tables have been updated with an additional column with the target based on the sealant dimension (15 mm) used in the design phase (table 2, table3, table 4. An additional table (Table 5) for final design (sealant 25 mm) has been added (line 298) 

  • Express the image in Figure 5 by rotating it so that it looks consistent, as in Figures 1-4.

New figure 8 rotated 90°

  • In Figure 10, the thermal analysis result image for TGU is also added and complemented so that it can be consistently compared with Figures 1-5 and 9 above.

Done. An additional image for THU thermal analysis result has been added (Figure 13).

Hoping the changes are in line with your expectations, I remain at your full disposal for any further integration suggested.

Wishing you a good day,

Sincerely,                              

Alessandro Pracucci     

Reviewer 2 Report

The paper presents part of the results of the EENSULATE H2020 Project and especially the integration of Vacuum Insulated Glazing (VIG) within façade systems to achieve for the development of innovative, lightweight, and energy-efficient building envelope as requested by European strategies in terms of energy efficiency targets, especially when dealing with glazed surfaces.

So, it is evident the extreme relevance that the topic addressed has within the building sector, especially considering the role that glass has both for architects and manufacturers.

Hence, assuming the significance of content, the scientific soundness, and the well-structured of the contribution, it is suggested to implement some part of the article to reach for a work of better quality.

For instance, in the first part (introduction) maybe a more structured reference framework could be useful, especially when speaking about U-Value of DGU and TGU (lines 49 to 60).

Similarly, when introducing the testbed in Poland (line 138-144), perhaps some information more about the consistency of the building could be introduced, to allow the readers to better understand the real contribution of the façade module towards building energy efficiency.

Again, regarding façade architectural design (from line 154 onwards and, again at line 189-190), some more specifications could be helpful to understand better aesthetical issues to be faced (e.g. by adding images, photos, or simulations).

In the end, a final English proofreading is suggested.

Author Response

Dear reviewer,

thanking for your observations and suggestions to improve the impact of the paper, I resume the corrections addressed by your review:

  • in the first part (introduction) maybe a more structured reference framework could be useful, especially when speaking about U-Value of DGU and TGU (lines 49 to 60).

References to present DGU and TGU have been included (line 52).

  1. AGC Glass unlimited 2014.
  2. AGC Clearsight. Enhance your view with anti-reflective glass 2019.
  3. Glass, R. Triple Glazing v Double Glazing. Regency Glass.
  • Similarly, when introducing the testbed in Poland (line 138-144), perhaps some information more about the consistency of the building could be introduced, to allow the readers to better understand the real contribution of the façade module towards building energy efficiency.

An introduction to demo building and the faced object of renovation has been added (from line 147 to line 151)

  • Again, regarding façade architectural design (from line 154 onwards and, again at line 189-190), some more specifications could be helpful to understand better aesthetical issues to be faced (e.g. by adding images, photos, or simulations).

New Figure 1, new Figure 3 and new Figure 4 have been added. Figure 2 (former Figure 1) has been sized to fit the space available after new figures adding (pages 4 and 5)

  • In the end, a final English proofreading is suggested

Thank you for the suggestion. A proofreading has been done.

 

Hoping the changes are in line with your expectations, I remain at your full disposal for any further integration suggested.

Wishing you a good day,

Sincerely,                              

Alessandro Pracucci

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