Special Issue "Energy Efficiency, Savings and Storage in Buildings Combined with Advanced Energy Systems and Materials"

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

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (1 May 2020).

Special Issue Editor

Prof. Dr. Maria Founti
E-Mail Website1 Website2
Guest Editor
School of Mechanical Engineering, National Technical University of Athens, Heroon Polytechniou 9, 15780 Athens, Greece
Interests: combustion and heterogeneous systems and processes; compartment fires; energy efficiency; savings and storage in buildings combined with advanced energy systems and materials; multicriteria assessment and life cycle analysis for techno-economic, social and environmental impact analysis of energy systems
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

It is well understood that the transformation of building stock into highly energy efficient and decarbonized nearly zero-energy buildings is conceptually linked to two major interacting matters: a) building characteristics, occupancy, and demand patterns, e.g., type/age of construction, architectural-climatic parameters, building envelop thermal performance, b) maximizing the local penetration of renewable energy (RE) systems depending on their availability and ability to follow building load and demand variations. Last but not least, the availability of schemes for RE acceptance at the community and building level, turning users from energy consumers to prosumers is of high importance.

The purpose of this Energies (https://www.mdpi.com/journal/energies) Special Issue on “Energy Efficiency, Savings and Storage in Buildings Combined with Advanced Energy Systems and Materials” is to publish a set of research articles that demonstrate the effectiveness of innovative concepts that combine the above aspects, to fulfil the maximum building energy demands meeting long-term and changing needs and requirements of building users.

We are inviting original works for peer-review and possible publication, presenting combinations of materials and systems capable of fulfilling the electrical, thermal, and cooling demands of low-energy consumption buildings (i.e., well-insulated buildings with minimal thermal losses through the envelope). Manuscripts combining experimental implementation with theoretical calculations and techno-economic assessment are encouraged.

Prof. Maria Founti
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

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 2000 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

  • Existing and new buildings
  • Renewable energy systems
  • Thermal-electrical storage
  • Advanced insulation materials/components/systems
  • Control systems
  • Techno-economic assessment
  • Experimental validation

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

Article
Dutch Hybrid Neighbourhoods of 1860–1910 in Heat Transition: The Case Study of Zeeheldenkwartier in The Hague
Energies 2020, 13(20), 5255; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13205255 - 10 Oct 2020
Viewed by 710
Abstract
This paper explores the typo-morphologic characteristics of late 19th century hybrid neighbourhoods in urban regions of The Netherlands and possibilities of a feasible climate neutral energy system in the future. The Zeeheldenkwartier neighbourhood in The Hague is used as a case study. Sustainable [...] Read more.
This paper explores the typo-morphologic characteristics of late 19th century hybrid neighbourhoods in urban regions of The Netherlands and possibilities of a feasible climate neutral energy system in the future. The Zeeheldenkwartier neighbourhood in The Hague is used as a case study. Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) are involved to ensure access to affordable and clean energy (SDG 7) and make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable (SDG 11). With the 2019 Dutch-Climate-Agreement The Netherlands decided on a neighbourhood approach to the transition from natural gas to a climate neutral energy supply in buildings. Implicit homogeneity in most buildings of neighbourhoods is presupposed, in contrast to older neighbourhoods that were laid out before World War I. These are nowadays heterogenic, attractive, mixed and often protected neighbourhoods because of the quality of the architecture. Establishing a generic energy plan here is a challenge. The foremost important conclusion is the recognition of the architectural and urban quality and features of these kinds of neighbourhoods and to develop specific legislation and rules about insulation, service and energy systems. Another conclusion about the strategy is that one should not rely on a single generic solution but rather apply multiple forms of heat supply over a longer period of time. There is lack of heat and construction capacity. Box-in-box-renovation is best done when people are moving and the house is uninhabited. The tenants of a neighbourhood should oganise, not building owners, and implement legislation and framework for rental apartments. Insulation should be done to mandatory Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) label B or C, adding sound and energy production of heat pumps and district heating. Full article
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Article
Thermophysical Properties Characterization of Sulphoaluminate Cement Mortars Incorporating Phase Change Material for Thermal Energy Storage
Energies 2020, 13(19), 5024; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13195024 - 24 Sep 2020
Viewed by 481
Abstract
Efficient use of solar energy by thermal energy storage composites and utilizing environmentally friendly cementitious materials are important trends for sustainable building composite materials. In this study, a paraffin/low density polyethylene (LDPE) composite shape-stabilized phase change material (SSPCM) was prepared and incorporated into [...] Read more.
Efficient use of solar energy by thermal energy storage composites and utilizing environmentally friendly cementitious materials are important trends for sustainable building composite materials. In this study, a paraffin/low density polyethylene (LDPE) composite shape-stabilized phase change material (SSPCM) was prepared and incorporated into a sulphoaluminate cement (SAC) mortar to prepare thermal energy storage mortar. The thermal and mechanical properties of SSPCM and a SAC-based thermal energy storage material (SCTESM) were investigated. The result of differential scanning calorimeter (DSC) analysis indicates that the latent heat of SCTESM is as high as 99.99 J/g. Thermogravimetric analysis demonstrates that the SCTESM does not show significant decomposition below 145 °C. The volume stability test shows the volume shrinkage percentage of the SCTESM is less than that of pure SAC mortar and far less than that of ordinary Portland cement mortar. The SCTESM has high early strength so that the compressive strength at 1-, 3-, and 7-day curing age is up to that at 28-day curing age of 67.5%, 78.3%, and 86.7%, respectively. Furthermore, a mathematical prediction model of the SCTESM compressive strength was proposed. The investigation of latent heat storage characteristics and the thermoregulating performance reveals that SCTESMs have the excellent capacity of heat storage and thermoregulating. Full article
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Article
Thermal Analysis of Pure and Nanoparticle-Enhanced PCM—Application in Concentric Tube Heat Exchanger
Energies 2020, 13(15), 3841; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13153841 - 27 Jul 2020
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 506
Abstract
In this paper, organic phase change materials are modeled and studied both numerically and computationally. The results are compared with those of other research available in the international literature. Regardless of their heat storing capacity, the low heat conductivity of PCMs constitutes a [...] Read more.
In this paper, organic phase change materials are modeled and studied both numerically and computationally. The results are compared with those of other research available in the international literature. Regardless of their heat storing capacity, the low heat conductivity of PCMs constitutes a significant obstacle to the further advancement of technologies pertaining to latent heat energy storage, as it hampers the immediate response of systems both at heat storage and at heat recovery. In this work, two types of nanoparticles are used as enhancing media, and the calculations are repeated in terms of melting front and stored energy enhancement. The results show that a 6.5% value for the melt percentage enhancement and a 5.5% value for the heat stored enhancement are exhibited when copper nanoparticles are utilized. Full article
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Article
Energy Savings in an Office Building with High WWR Using Glazing Systems Combining Thermochromic and Electrochromic Layers
Energies 2020, 13(11), 3020; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13113020 - 11 Jun 2020
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 819
Abstract
This paper assesses energy savings in terms of heating, cooling, and artificial lighting achieved in an office building with a high Window to Wall Ratio (WWR), located in Athens and Stockholm. Six different configurations of triple pane windows combining thermochromic, electrochromic, and low-e [...] Read more.
This paper assesses energy savings in terms of heating, cooling, and artificial lighting achieved in an office building with a high Window to Wall Ratio (WWR), located in Athens and Stockholm. Six different configurations of triple pane windows combining thermochromic, electrochromic, and low-e coatings in Insulated Glass Units (IGUs) are examined to quantify the potential of increasing energy savings in office buildings. The combination of electrochromic and thermochromic layers on the outer pane of the triple IGU, achieved an 18.5% and 8.1% reduction in annual primary energy use for Athens and Stockholm, respectively. The used switching strategy ensured the visual comfort of the employees and provided adequate daylight in both cases. It was found that in Stockholm the cooling system can be downsized considerably, achieving important cost reduction in the HVAC system. The analysis also takes into account the reduction of thermal storage in the building envelope due to the switchable windows. This reduction is beneficial in the case of Athens, but it can reduce energy savings in Stockholm. Therefore, for colder climates, it is important to increase window heat gains through the development of layers with higher g-value in the clear state and through the application of appropriate switching strategies. Full article
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Article
A Comparative Study of Solar-Driven Trigeneration Systems for the Building Sector
Energies 2020, 13(8), 2074; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13082074 - 21 Apr 2020
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 738
Abstract
The utilization of solar irradiation in the building sector is vital to create sustainable systems. Trigeneration systems are highly efficient systems that usually produce electricity, heating and cooling which are the main energy needs in the buildings. The objective of this work is [...] Read more.
The utilization of solar irradiation in the building sector is vital to create sustainable systems. Trigeneration systems are highly efficient systems that usually produce electricity, heating and cooling which are the main energy needs in the buildings. The objective of this work is the energetic and financial investigation of three different solar-driven trigeneration systems that can be applied in buildings with high energy needs (e.g., hospitals or commercial buildings). The parabolic trough solar collector (PTC) is selected to be used because it is the most mature solar concentrating technology. The examined configurations practically are different combinations of organic Rankine cycle (ORC) with heat pumps. System 1 includes a PTC coupled to an ORC which feeds an absorption heat pump machine. System 2 includes a PTC which simultaneously feeds an ORC and absorption machine. System 3 includes a PTC which feeds an ORC and a heat exchanger for heating, while the ORC is fed with and electricity a vapor compression cycle for cooling production. The simple payback period of System 1 is 5.62 years and it is the lowest, with System 2 to have 7.82 years and System 3 to have 8.49 years. The energy efficiency of the three systems is 78.17%, 43.30% and 37.45%, respectively, while the exergy efficiency 15.94%, 13.08% and 12.25%, respectively. System 1 is the best configuration according to energy, exergy and financial analysis. This study is performed with developed thermodynamic models in Engineering Equation Solver and a dynamic model in FORTRAN. Full article
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Article
Thermo-Chemical Instability and Energy Analysis of Absorption Heat Pumps
Energies 2020, 13(8), 1966; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13081966 - 16 Apr 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 595
Abstract
This paper presents the results of energy analysis of absorption heat pumps. The thermo-chemical instability term was introduced for absorption heat pumps used for heating or cooling or heating and cooling. A higher thermo-chemical instability results in the equipment being more sensitive with [...] Read more.
This paper presents the results of energy analysis of absorption heat pumps. The thermo-chemical instability term was introduced for absorption heat pumps used for heating or cooling or heating and cooling. A higher thermo-chemical instability results in the equipment being more sensitive with regard to the variation of the heat source flux. This sensitivity can be taken into account when heat sources are chosen for a certain absorption machine. Absorption heat pumps having thermo-chemical compressors were compared from energy demand and energy efficiency points of view with heat pumps having mechanical compressors. As it is shown, for certain evaporation and condensation temperature values, an absorption heat pump with similar efficiency to that of the heat pump with a mechanical compressor can always be found. Full article
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Article
Thermal Comfort Aspects of Solar Gains during the Heating Season
Energies 2020, 13(7), 1702; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13071702 - 03 Apr 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 575
Abstract
Glazing plays a key role in the energy balance of buildings. The aim of this paper is to enlighten the thermal discomfort caused by large glazed areas in the heating season and to point out a possible solution that can provide proper thermal [...] Read more.
Glazing plays a key role in the energy balance of buildings. The aim of this paper is to enlighten the thermal discomfort caused by large glazed areas in the heating season and to point out a possible solution that can provide proper thermal comfort with low energy use. It is unusual to discuss the negative effects of solar gains on thermal comfort during the heating season. However, there are cases when glazing may lead to unforeseen indoor thermal discomfort conditions. Laboratory and on site measurements were performed in order to assess thermal discomfort caused by direct and diffuse radiation. It was shown that the WBGT (Wet Bulb Globe Temperature) index may exceed even 30 °C in the winter season in a room having large glazed area oriented to east. Laboratory tests performed in climate chamber have shown that the high PMV values cannot be reduced below 1.0, increasing the air change rate in the room. Using opaque drapes, the WBGT index was reduced by 2 °C, but the daylighting decreased substantially. It was demonstrated that by using advanced personalized ventilation systems, the appropriate thermal comfort can be provided avoiding the reduction of daylighting. Full article
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Article
Air Terminal Devices Developed for Personal Ventilation Systems
Energies 2020, 13(7), 1688; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13071688 - 03 Apr 2020
Viewed by 520
Abstract
Using the personal ventilation systems may improve the thermal comfort sensation. At the University of Debrecen, a personal ventilation system was developed named ALTAIR. This paper presents the results of mean air velocity, turbulence grade, and draught measurements related to newly developed air [...] Read more.
Using the personal ventilation systems may improve the thermal comfort sensation. At the University of Debrecen, a personal ventilation system was developed named ALTAIR. This paper presents the results of mean air velocity, turbulence grade, and draught measurements related to newly developed air terminal devices which are connected to the ALTAIR personal ventilation system. In order to define the measurement points it was essential to test the new air terminal devices (ATDs) in front of a black wall and smoke puffs. A series of measurements were carried out with isothermal air flow, mean air velocity, turbulence grade, and draught around the occupant head region in order to improve the thermal comfort sensation. Five different ATDs were analyzed. Full article
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Article
Heat Sink Shape and Topology Optimization with Pareto-Vector Length Optimization for Air Cooling
Energies 2020, 13(7), 1661; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13071661 - 02 Apr 2020
Viewed by 666
Abstract
Localized air cooling can be used for various purposes, e.g.: electronic equipment cooling, and air conditioning. The paper emphasizes that the connection between the air-flow and cooling has to fulfill a contradictory requirement (low pressure loss and effective cooling). The cooling and the [...] Read more.
Localized air cooling can be used for various purposes, e.g.: electronic equipment cooling, and air conditioning. The paper emphasizes that the connection between the air-flow and cooling has to fulfill a contradictory requirement (low pressure loss and effective cooling). The cooling and the pressure loss are dependent on the moisture content of the air flow. In the study, heat sink geometries were examined at various fresh air relative humidity, temperature and flowrates with commercially available simulation software (Ansys Fluent). The most favorable option was chosen by Pareto-vector length optimization. For optimization, head loss coefficient and temperature coefficient were used. Firstly, 108 cases were made to evaluate the sensitivity of the optimization parameters. Secondly, on 40 finned heat sinks with different fin width and quantity optimization were made. Thirdly, a prototype was made from the favorite solution where the performance was evaluated. For the measurement two type: TEC1-12706 thermoelectric cooling devices (TEC) were used for cooling. The difference between the measured and the modelled cooled air temperatures was 3%. Full article
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Article
Machine Learning for Benchmarking Models of Heating Energy Demand of Houses in Northern Canada
Energies 2020, 13(5), 1158; https://doi.org/10.3390/en13051158 - 04 Mar 2020
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 834
Abstract
In most cases, the benchmarking models of energy use in houses are developed based on current and past data, and they continue to be used without any update. This paper proposes the method of retraining of benchmarking models by applying machine learning techniques [...] Read more.
In most cases, the benchmarking models of energy use in houses are developed based on current and past data, and they continue to be used without any update. This paper proposes the method of retraining of benchmarking models by applying machine learning techniques when new measurements are made available. The method uses as a case study the measurements of heating energy demand from two semi-detached houses of Northern Canada. The results of the prediction of heating energy demand using static or augmented window techniques are compared with measurements. The daily energy signature is used as a benchmarking model due to its simplicity and performance. However, the proposed retraining method can be applied to any form of benchmarking model. The method should be applied in all possible situations, and be an integral part of intelligent building automation and control systems (BACS) for the ongoing commissioning for building energy-related applications. Full article
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