Special Issue "Energy Efficiency in Buildings: Both New and Rehabilitated"

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "Energy and Buildings".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2019).

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A printed edition of this Special Issue is available here.

Special Issue Editors

Prof. Dr. José Manuel Andújar
Website
Guest Editor
Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingeniería, Universidad de Huelva, Campus de El Carmen, Huelva 21007, Spain
Interests: control engineering; renewable energy systems; remote piloted aircraft systems applications and engineering education
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Dr. Sergio Gómez Melgar
Website SciProfiles
Guest Editor
Escuela Técnica Superior de Ingeniería, University of Huelva, Huelva 21819, Spain
Interests: architecture and engineering
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Buildings are one of the main causes of the emission of greenhouse gases in the world; in Europe, for example, they are responsible for more than 30% of emissions, or about 900 million tons of CO2 per year. Heating and air conditioning are mainly responsible for greenhouse gas emissions in buildings.

Based on the above, it is a current priority to reduce (or ideally eliminate) the waste  of energy in buildings and at the same time supply the necessary energy through renewable sources. The first can be achieved by improving the construction methods, the materials used and the efficiency of the facilities and systems; the second can be achieved through the use of renewable energies (wind, solar, geothermal, etc.) in buildings. In any case, regardless of whether the energy used is renewable or not, the efficiency must always be taken into account: the most profitable and clean energy is that which is not necessary.

Most current buildings were built with poor energy efficiency criteria and even, depending on the country and the date of construction, with none. Therefore, regardless of whether construction regulations are becoming stricter, a huge challenge is the energy rehabilitation of existing buildings.

In this Special Issue, potential topics include but are not limited to the following:

  • Methodologies, processes, methods to design/build/rehabilitate minimum energy consumption buildings.
  • Efficient electric loads: ventilation, heating, air conditioning, lighting, domestic hot water, appliances, etc.
  • Facilities in buildings for minimum energy consumption.
  • Renewable energy applications in buildings.
  • Maintenance and management of buildings for minimum energy consumption.
  • Methods and systems of energy measurement and control in buildings.
  • Home automation for energy efficiency in buildings.

Prof. Dr. José Manuel Andújar
Dr. Sergio Gómez Melgar
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • energy efficiency
  • passive architecture
  • heating, ventilating and air conditioning
  • nearly zero energy building
  • renewable energy systems
  • energy rehabilitation

Published Papers (16 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
uhuMEBr: Energy Refurbishment of Existing Buildings in Subtropical Climates to Become Minimum Energy Buildings
Energies 2020, 13(5), 1204; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13051204 - 05 Mar 2020
Abstract
Today, most countries in the world have mandatory regulations, more or less strict, regarding energy efficiency in buildings. However, a large percentage of the buildings already built were constructed under lax or non-existing regulations in this regard. Therefore, many countries are facing the [...] Read more.
Today, most countries in the world have mandatory regulations, more or less strict, regarding energy efficiency in buildings. However, a large percentage of the buildings already built were constructed under lax or non-existing regulations in this regard. Therefore, many countries are facing the energy refurbishment of their existing buildings to reduce their carbon footprint. Depending on ambient weather conditions where a building settles, its operation with respect to the achievement of maximum energy efficiency should usually be different. This happens in subtropical climates when, during the year and depending on the season, the building needs to conserve heat, evacuate it or even make an exchange with the outside to take advantage of favorable environmental conditions. This paper presents a complete methodology for conducting building energy efficiency refurbishments in subtropical climates in order to convert them into minimum energy buildings. The proposed methodology is illustrated by a case study in a dwelling that includes all the stages, from the analysis of the existing dwelling to the refurbishment works, showing the final results and the subsequent dwelling operation. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle
Evaluation of Energy Efficiency Potential for the Building Sector in the Arab Region
Energies 2019, 12(22), 4279; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12224279 - 09 Nov 2019
Abstract
The paper overviews the current energy demand trends in the building sector for the Arab region using reported historical energy consumption. Moreover, the paper describes the current energy efficiency policies and regulations for all the Arab countries specific to both residential and commercial [...] Read more.
The paper overviews the current energy demand trends in the building sector for the Arab region using reported historical energy consumption. Moreover, the paper describes the current energy efficiency policies and regulations for all the Arab countries specific to both residential and commercial buildings. Finally, the paper evaluates potential benefits for large-scale energy efficiency programs specific to new and existing building stocks within the Arab region using a bottom-up analysis approach. The analysis of the available energy consumption for all the Arab countries has shown that the Arab region presents a significant variation in energy consumption levels between its sub-regions and countries. Indeed, the Arab region includes oil-producing countries such as Saudi Arabia with the largest energy use per capita in the World with over 9000 kWh/person of electricity used annually in buildings. However, the same region has the least developed countries such as Sudan and Yemen with the lowest energy use per capita in the World with barely 100 kWh/person/year of electrical consumption. The review of the existing regulations has indicated that several Arab countries have not implemented any energy efficiency codes and standards for building envelope, lighting, heating and cooling equipment, and appliances. A cost-effectiveness analysis has indicated that the Arab region can incur significant benefits in upgrading the energy efficiency of its new and existing buildings especially its households. Specifically, the adoption and the enforcement of stringent energy efficiency codes for new residential and commercial buildings can result in a reduction of 12.7 TWh/year in final annual energy consumption for the Arab region. Moreover, retrofit programs targeting existing buildings can save up to 470 TWh or a third of the building sector final energy consumption per year after 2030. Combining comprehensive energy efficiency requirements for new buildings and extensive retrofit programs for existing buildings would reduce the total final energy consumption of the building sector in the Arab region by 600 TWh by 2030 and by 900 TWh by 2050 if all the energy programs start to be implemented by 2020. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Energy Renovation versus Demolition and Construction of a New Building—A Comparative Analysis of a Swedish Multi-Family Building
Energies 2019, 12(11), 2218; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12112218 - 11 Jun 2019
Cited by 5
Abstract
This study addresses the life cycle costs (LCC) of energy renovation, and the demolition and construction of a new building. A comparison is made between LCC optimal energy renovations of four different building types with thermal performance, representing Swedish constructions from the 1940s, [...] Read more.
This study addresses the life cycle costs (LCC) of energy renovation, and the demolition and construction of a new building. A comparison is made between LCC optimal energy renovations of four different building types with thermal performance, representing Swedish constructions from the 1940s, 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s, as well as the demolition of the building and construction of a new building that complies with the Swedish building code. A Swedish multi-family building from the 1960s is used as a reference building. LCC optimal energy renovations are identified with energy saving targets ranging between 10% and 70%, in addition to the lowest possible life cycle cost. The analyses show that an ambitious energy renovation is not cost-optimal in any of the studied buildings, if achieving the lowest LCC is the objective function. The cost of the demolition and construction of a new building is higher compared to energy renovation to the same energy performance. The higher rent in new buildings does not compensate for the higher cost of new construction. A more ambitious renovation is required in buildings that have a shape factor with a high internal volume to heated floor area ratio. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Development of a Passive and Active Technology Package Standard and Database for Application to Zero Energy Buildings in South Korea
Energies 2019, 12(9), 1700; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12091700 - 05 May 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
There is much research on zero energy buildings. In this paper, technologies and policies to improve the building energy efficiency of zero energy buildings are presented. The zero energy building certification system in Korea is introduced, and the evaluation is carried out based [...] Read more.
There is much research on zero energy buildings. In this paper, technologies and policies to improve the building energy efficiency of zero energy buildings are presented. The zero energy building certification system in Korea is introduced, and the evaluation is carried out based on the energy self-reliance rate that enables zero energy buildings. Zero energy buildings are able to minimize energy consumption due to the application of highly efficient building materials and equipment technology. In this research, to increase the prevalence of zero energy buildings in Korea, the authors propose a zero energy building technology package. Using a passive and active technology package, we confirmed the necessity and detailed requirements of each technology parameter. We analyze and classify Korean building material testing methods and performance standards, and propose passive and active technology packages, modules, material performance testing methods and minimum requirement performance standards. Finally, this study proposed a table presenting the test methods, standard and minimum value of performance. By these results, the authors confirmed the effectiveness and availability of passive and active technical packages. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
What Affects the Progress and Transformation of New Residential Building Energy Efficiency Promotion in China: Stakeholders’ Perceptions
Energies 2019, 12(6), 1027; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12061027 - 16 Mar 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
Nationwide energy efficiency (EE) promotion of new residential buildings is affected by multiple factors regarding policies, markets, technologies, capacities, and economics. The perceived influences of these factors by stakeholders are crucial to the effectiveness evaluation of current policies and the selection of policy [...] Read more.
Nationwide energy efficiency (EE) promotion of new residential buildings is affected by multiple factors regarding policies, markets, technologies, capacities, and economics. The perceived influences of these factors by stakeholders are crucial to the effectiveness evaluation of current policies and the selection of policy instruments. However, they are normally assumed or taken for granted. The knowledge gap between stakeholders’ perceptions and research assumptions may lead to researchers’ recognition bias. Correspondingly, this paper aims to identify the significant factors, perceived by frontline stakeholders, influencing nationwide EE promotion of new residential buildings before 2020 and 2030. Factors were collected through literature review and their influence were evaluated via Analytical Hierarchy Process based on the data collected in the questionnaires distributed to 32 institutes. The theory of Nested Policy Design Framework and Policy Environment was used to structure the hierarchy and generate policy implications. Results indicate that (1) policy factors are of the greatest influence before 2020 and market perfection factors will have great influences from 2020 to 2030, indicating the transformation of governance arrangement to “market-based” and “network-based” from the current legal-based system; and (2) factors regarding market needs are of significant influence in both terms, revealing the way the transformation should be accomplished. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Prediction Model Based on an Artificial Neural Network for User-Based Building Energy Consumption in South Korea
Energies 2019, 12(4), 608; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12040608 - 15 Feb 2019
Cited by 7
Abstract
The evaluation of building energy consumption is heavily based on building characteristics and thus often deviates from the true consumption. Consequently, user-based estimation of building energy consumption is necessary because the actual consumption is greatly affected by user characteristics and activities. This work [...] Read more.
The evaluation of building energy consumption is heavily based on building characteristics and thus often deviates from the true consumption. Consequently, user-based estimation of building energy consumption is necessary because the actual consumption is greatly affected by user characteristics and activities. This work aims to examine the variation in energy consumption as a function of user activities within the same building, and to employ an artificial neural network (ANN) to predict user-based energy consumption. The study exploited the actual 24-h schedules of 5240 single-person households and computed the respective energy consumption using EnergyPlus V 8.8.0 software. The calculated values were clustered according to gender, age, occupation, income, educational level, and occupancy period and the difference among them was analyzed. The simulation results showed that for single-person households in Korea, females used more energy than males did, and the difference increased with age. Furthermore, unemployed and low-income individuals consumed more energy whereas consumption was inversely proportional to the educational level. Energy consumption increased with the occupancy period. Based on the simulation results and six user characteristics, the ANN model indicated a correlation between user characteristics and energy usage. This study analyzed the differences in energy usage depending on user activity and characteristics that affect building energy consumption. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Using Edible Plant and Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregate (LECA) to Strengthen the Thermal Performance of Extensive Green Roofs in Subtropical Urban Areas
Energies 2019, 12(3), 424; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12030424 - 29 Jan 2019
Cited by 2
Abstract
Gazing at natural landscapes and participating in agricultural activities can elicit psychophysiological restoration. However, most buildings are constructed merely to meet the minimum legal requirements for structure weight load. Extensive green roofs consisting of vegetables and a lightweight growth medium can be designed [...] Read more.
Gazing at natural landscapes and participating in agricultural activities can elicit psychophysiological restoration. However, most buildings are constructed merely to meet the minimum legal requirements for structure weight load. Extensive green roofs consisting of vegetables and a lightweight growth medium can be designed to provide not only passive-cooling effects on bare rooftops, but also to convert idle rooftops into temporary retreats for stressed individuals. The purpose of this study is to both measure the surface temperature reduction and heat amplitude reduction of a bare rooftop using the extensive green roofs containing a lightweight expanded clay aggregate (LECA) and Ipomoea batata as well as conduct a weight-reduction-and-cost analysis to measure the weight loss of the extensive green roofs incurred through LECA replacement. A four-stage field experiment was performed on the flat rooftop of a dormitory in a subtropical climate during summer. The results indicated that roofs with Ipomoea batata had a significantly higher passive-cooling effect than did roofs without Ipomoea batata. The roofs with 10%–40% LECA exhibited a slightly higher passive-cooling effect than did roofs with conventional garden soil. At a slightly different average air temperature (0.56 °C; i.e., 32.04 °C minus 31.48 °C), the combined effects of LECA and Ipomoea batata helped to significantly reduce the average temperature of the bare rooftop by an additional 10.19 °C, namely, temperature reduction of the bare rooftop increased from 9.54 °C under a roof with 0% LECA and without plants in the second stage to 19.73 °C under a roof with 10% LECA and with plants in the fourth stage. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Data-Driven Evaluation of Residential HVAC System Efficiency Using Energy and Environmental Data
Energies 2019, 12(1), 188; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12010188 - 08 Jan 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
In the U.S., the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system is generally the largest electricity-consuming end-use in a residential building. However, homeowners are less likely to have their HVAC system serviced regularly, thus inefficiencies in operation are also more likely to occur. [...] Read more.
In the U.S., the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system is generally the largest electricity-consuming end-use in a residential building. However, homeowners are less likely to have their HVAC system serviced regularly, thus inefficiencies in operation are also more likely to occur. To address this challenge, this research works towards a non-intrusive data-driven assessment method using building assessors’ data, HVAC electricity demand data, and outdoor environmental data. Building assessors’ data is first used to estimate the HVAC system size, then estimate the electricity demand curve of the HVAC system. A comparison of the proposed electricity demand curve development method demonstrates strong agreement with physics-based HVAC model results. An HVAC efficiency rating is then proposed, which compares the model-predicted and actual performance data to define whether an HVAC system is operating as expected. As a case study, detailed data for 39 occupied, conditioned residential buildings in Austin, Texas, was used demonstrating the identification of the presence of potential HVAC inefficiencies. The results prove beneficial for utilities to help target residential HVAC systems in need of service or energy efficiency upgrades, as well as for homeowners as a continuous assessment tool for HVAC performance. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Simulation and Analysis of Perturbation and Observation-Based Self-Adaptable Step Size Maximum Power Point Tracking Strategy with Low Power Loss for Photovoltaics
Energies 2019, 12(1), 92; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12010092 - 28 Dec 2018
Cited by 5
Abstract
Photovoltaic (PV) techniques are widely used in daily life. In addition to the material characteristics and environmental conditions, maximum power point tracking (MPPT) techniques are an efficient means to maximize the output power and improve the utilization of solar power. However, the conventional [...] Read more.
Photovoltaic (PV) techniques are widely used in daily life. In addition to the material characteristics and environmental conditions, maximum power point tracking (MPPT) techniques are an efficient means to maximize the output power and improve the utilization of solar power. However, the conventional fixed step size perturbation and observation (P&O) algorithm results in perturbations and power loss around the maximum power point in steady-state operation. To reduce the power loss in steady-state operation and improve the response speed of MPPT, this study proposes a self-adaptable step size P&O-based MPPT algorithm with infinitesimal perturbations. This algorithm combines four techniques to upgrade the response speed and reduce the power loss: (1) system operation state determination, (2) perturbation direction decision, (3) adaptable step size, and 4) natural oscillation control. The simulation results validate the proposed algorithm and illustrate its performances in operational procedures. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Phase Balancing Home Energy Management System Using Model Predictive Control
Energies 2018, 11(12), 3323; https://doi.org/10.3390/en11123323 - 28 Nov 2018
Cited by 4
Abstract
Most typical distribution networks are unbalanced due to unequal loading on each of the three phases and untransposed lines. In this paper, models and methods which can handle three-phase unbalanced scenarios are developed. The authors present a novel three-phase home energy management system [...] Read more.
Most typical distribution networks are unbalanced due to unequal loading on each of the three phases and untransposed lines. In this paper, models and methods which can handle three-phase unbalanced scenarios are developed. The authors present a novel three-phase home energy management system to control both active and reactive power to provide per-phase optimization. Simplified single-phase algorithms are not sufficient to capture all the complexities a three-phase unbalance system poses. Distributed generators such as photo-voltaic systems, wind generators, and loads such as household electric and thermal demand connected to these networks directly depend on external factors such as weather, ambient temperature, and irradiation. They are also time dependent, containing daily, weekly, and seasonal cycles. Economic and phase-balanced operation of such generators and loads is very important to improve energy efficiency and maximize benefit while respecting consumer needs. Since homes and buildings are expected to consume a large share of electrical energy of a country, they are the ideal candidate to help solve these issues. The method developed will include typical distributed generation, loads, and various smart home models which were constructed using realistic models representing typical homes in Austria. A control scheme is provided which uses model predictive control with multi-objective mixed-integer quadratic programming to maximize self-consumption, user comfort and grid support. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Parametric Analysis of Buildings’ Heat Load Depending on Glazing—Hungarian Case Study
Energies 2018, 11(12), 3291; https://doi.org/10.3390/en11123291 - 25 Nov 2018
Cited by 2
Abstract
The share of cooling is rising in the energy balance of buildings. The reason is for increasing occupants’ comfort needs, which is accentuated by the fact that the number and the amplitude of heat waves are increasing. The comfortable and healthy indoor environment [...] Read more.
The share of cooling is rising in the energy balance of buildings. The reason is for increasing occupants’ comfort needs, which is accentuated by the fact that the number and the amplitude of heat waves are increasing. The comfortable and healthy indoor environment should to be realized with the minimum amount of energy and fossil fuels. In order to meet this goal, designers should know the effect of different parameters on the buildings’ energy consumption. The energy need for cooling is mainly influenced by the glazed ratio and orientation of the facades, the quality of glazing and shading. In this paper the heat load analysis was done by assuming different types of summer days and surface cooling, depending on the glazing ratio, shading factor and solar factor of glazing. It was proven that, for a certain parameter, the sensitivity of the heat load depends on the orientation and chosen summer day. If the glazing area is doubled, the heat load increases with about 30%. Decreasing the glazed area to 50%, the heat load decreases with about 10%. The heat load decreases with about 3% if the g factor is lowered with 25% or the shading factor is reduced with 60%. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Optimization of Performance Parameter Design and Energy Use Prediction for Nearly Zero Energy Buildings
Energies 2018, 11(12), 3252; https://doi.org/10.3390/en11123252 - 22 Nov 2018
Cited by 6
Abstract
Optimizing key parameters with energy consumption as the control target can minimize the heating and cooling needs of buildings. In this paper we focus on the optimization of performance parameters design and the prediction of energy consumption for nearly Zero Energy Buildings (nZEB). [...] Read more.
Optimizing key parameters with energy consumption as the control target can minimize the heating and cooling needs of buildings. In this paper we focus on the optimization of performance parameters design and the prediction of energy consumption for nearly Zero Energy Buildings (nZEB). The optimal combination of various performance parameters and the Energy Saving Ratio (ESR)are studied by using a large volume of simulation data. Artificial neural networks (ANNs) are applied for the prediction of annual electrical energy consumption in a nearly Zero Energy Building designs located in Shenyang (China). The data of the energy demand for our test is obtained by using building simulation techniques. The results demonstrate that the heating energy demand for our test nearly Zero Energy Building is 17.42 KW·h/(m2·a). The Energy Saving Ratio of window-to-wall ratios optimization is the most obvious, followed by thermal performance parameters of the window, and finally the insulation thickness. The maximum relative error of building energy consumption prediction is 6.46% when using the artificial neural network model to predict energy consumption. The establishment of this prediction method enables architects to easily and accurately obtain the energy consumption of buildings during the design phase. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Energy and Economic Analysis for Greenhouse Ground Insulation Design
Energies 2018, 11(11), 3218; https://doi.org/10.3390/en11113218 - 20 Nov 2018
Cited by 1
Abstract
Energy and life cycle cost analysis were employed to identify the most-cost effective ground envelope design for a greenhouse that employs supplemental lighting located in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (45.4° N). The envelope design alternatives that were investigated consist of installing insulation vertically around [...] Read more.
Energy and life cycle cost analysis were employed to identify the most-cost effective ground envelope design for a greenhouse that employs supplemental lighting located in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada (45.4° N). The envelope design alternatives that were investigated consist of installing insulation vertically around the perimeter and horizontally beneath the footprint of a greenhouse with a concrete slab and unfinished soil floor. Detailed thermal interaction between the greenhouse and the ground surface is achieved by considering 3-dimensional conduction heat transfer within the TRNSYS 17.2 simulation software. The portion of total heat loss that occurred through the ground was approximately 4% and permutations in ground insulation design reduced heating energy consumption by up to 1%. For the two floor designs, the highest net savings was achieved when perimeter and floor zone horizontal insulation was installed whereas a financial loss occurred when it was also placed beneath the crop zone. However, in all cases, the improvement in economic performance was small (net savings below $4000 and reduction in life cycle under 0.2%). Combined energy and life cycle cost analysis is valuable for selecting optimal envelope designs that are capable of lowering energy consumption, improving economics and enhancing greenhouse durability. Full article
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Green Building Rating Systems and the New Framework Level(s): A Critical Review of Sustainability Certification within Europe
Energies 2020, 13(1), 66; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13010066 - 21 Dec 2019
Cited by 3
Abstract
Increasing problems regarding pollution and climate change have long been demonstrated by scientific evidence. An important portion of carbon emissions are produced by the building sector. These emissions are directly related not only to the building’s energy consumption, but also other building attributes [...] Read more.
Increasing problems regarding pollution and climate change have long been demonstrated by scientific evidence. An important portion of carbon emissions are produced by the building sector. These emissions are directly related not only to the building’s energy consumption, but also other building attributes affecting the construction and operation of existing buildings: materials selection, waste management, transportation, water consumption, and others. To help reduce these emissions, several green building rating system (GBRSs) have appeared during the last years. This has made it difficult for stakeholders to identify which GBRSs could be more suitable to a specific project. The heterogeneity of the GRBS scenario requires the creation of a transparent and robust indicator framework that can be used in any country within the European Union (EU), which is a common EU framework of core sustainability indicators for office and residential buildings Level(s) with the goal to provide a solid structure for building sustainability certification across all countries of the EU. This paper provides a comprehensive review of the most common GBRSs within the EU: Building Research Establishment Assessment Method (BREEAM), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Nachhaltiges Bauen (DGNB), Haute Qualité Environnementale (HQE), and Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED), and a bottom up comparison of the influence in the final score produced by the indicators stated by Level(s). The indicators studied show a different influence of Level(s) indicators on every GBRS, where LEED and BREEAM were most affected while HQE and DGNB were less so. This paper demonstrates the heterogeneity of current GRBSs in the EU scenario and the difference between sustainability assessments, where DGNB seems to be more aligned to the current EU framework. Finally, the paper concludes with the need to work to achieve alignment between the GBRS and Level(s). Full article
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Open AccessReview
A Review of Heat Pump Systems and Applications in Cold Climates: Evidence from Lithuania
Energies 2019, 12(22), 4331; https://doi.org/10.3390/en12224331 - 13 Nov 2019
Abstract
Similar to other cold climate countries, space heating and domestic hot water (DHW) accounts form the largest share of household energy demand in Lithuania. Heat pump technology is considered to be one of the environmentally friendly solutions to increase energy efficiency and reduce [...] Read more.
Similar to other cold climate countries, space heating and domestic hot water (DHW) accounts form the largest share of household energy demand in Lithuania. Heat pump technology is considered to be one of the environmentally friendly solutions to increase energy efficiency and reduce the carbon footprint of buildings. Heat pumps have been finding their way into the Lithuanian market since 2002, and currently there are many good practice examples present in the country, especially in the residential and public sectors. Heat pump use is economically advantageous in the Baltic Region, and the market share of these systems is growing. Studies have reported seasonal performance factor (SPF) ranges within 1.8 and 5.6. The lower SPF values are typically attributable to air source heat pumps, whereas the higher efficiency is achieved by ground or water source heat pump applications. While the traditional heat pump techniques are well established in the region, there is a slow uptake of new technologies, such as solar-assisted heat pumps, absorption heat pumps and heat pumps integrated into foundations, tunnels or diaphragm walls. This paper provides a critical review of different heat pump technologies, using Lithuania as a cold climate case study to overview the market trends within the European context. Potential trends for the heat pump technology development in terms of application areas, cost-benefit predictions, as well as environmental aspects, are discussed. Full article
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Open AccessFeature PaperReview
Simulation Tools to Build Urban-Scale Energy Models: A Review
Energies 2018, 11(12), 3269; https://doi.org/10.3390/en11123269 - 23 Nov 2018
Cited by 12
Abstract
The development of Urban-Scale Energy Modelling (USEM) at the district or city level is currently the goal of many research groups due to the increased interest in evaluating the impact of energy efficiency measures in city environments. Because USEM comprises a great variety [...] Read more.
The development of Urban-Scale Energy Modelling (USEM) at the district or city level is currently the goal of many research groups due to the increased interest in evaluating the impact of energy efficiency measures in city environments. Because USEM comprises a great variety of analysis areas, the simulation programs that are able to model urban-scale energy systems actually consist of an assemblage of different particular sub-models. In order to simulate each of the sub-models in USEM, one can choose to use either existing specific simulation engines or tailor-made models. Engines or tools for simulation of urban-scale energy systems have already been overviewed in previous existing literature, however the distinction and classification of tools according to their functionalities within each analysis area in USEM has not been clearly presented. Therefore, the present work aims at reviewing the existing tools while classifying them according to their capabilities. The ultimate goal of this classification is to expose the available resources for implementing new co-simulation approaches in USEM, which may reduce the modelling effort and increase reliability as a result of using established and validated simulation engines. Full article
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