Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New software tool helps evaluate natural cooling options for buildings

Date:
May 29, 2011
Source:
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)
Summary:
A new, free software tool could prove to be a breath of fresh air for architects and designers of ventilation systems for "green" commercial buildings.

A new, free software tool from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) could prove to be a breath of fresh air for architects and designers of ventilation systems for "green" commercial buildings.

With the Climate Suitability Tool, building design teams can evaluate whether the local climate is suitable for cooling a prospective building with natural ventilation or requires a hybrid system that supplies supplemental cooling capacity. The tool is based on a model of the heat-related characteristics of a building configured to take full advantage of ambient climate conditions and natural air movement. It incorporates an algorithm -- or problem-solving procedure -- that crunches hourly weather data (downloaded from annual datasets for U.S. localities) and uses standardized criteria for rating the comfort of building occupants.

"We think this tool will be useful during the early stages of design, when decisions on the form of a building and its components are being made," explains NIST mechanical engineer Steven Emmerich. "It provides estimates of ventilation rates for preliminary design calculations. You can approximate how many air changes per hour will be necessary to offset heat gains due to the occupants, equipment and lighting so that comfortable conditions are maintained."

The effects of direct natural ventilation and a nighttime cooling procedure are assessed using a method devised by James Axley, Yale University professor of architecture and engineering. When the outdoor temperature is below an accepted threshold, direct ventilation through open windows and by other means can deliver the cooling to maintain the comfort zone. When the outdoor temperature exceeds the threshold during the day but drops below it after sunset, the cooler nightime air can dilute heat gained during the day and build a reserve of cooling potential for the day to come.

Results include an estimate of the total number and percentage of hours that direct ventilation would be effective over the total for the year; the percentage of hours for which ambient conditions would be too cold, hot, or humid for direct ventilation; the total number of days warranting nighttime cooling; and the estimated percentage of days for which nighttime cooling would be effective.

In a recently published article, Emmerich, Axley, and NIST's Brian Polidoro describe the capabilities of the new sustainability analysis tool, and present results of analyses of different scenarios in four U.S. cities representing a wide range of climates: Kansas City, Los Angeles, Miami, and Phoenix. They also evaluate the impact of an adaptive thermal comfort standard for buildings, issued by the American Society for Heating, Refrigeration, and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE). The ASHRAE standard (55-2010) includes an option for specifying a range of temperatures as opposed to setting fixed maximum outdoor temperature at which occupants will become increasingly uncomfortable.

Studies have found that occupants of naturally ventilated buildings tolerate a wider range of temperature than do people in air-conditioned structures. The researchers concluded that in cities with dry climates, such as Phoenix and Los Angeles, the adaptive thermal comfort option increases the effectiveness of natural cooling. Though not specified in the standard, humidity levels should be carefully considered when evaluating cooling and ventilation options, they recommended.

The Climate Suitability Tool can be accessed at: www.bfrl.nist.gov/IAQanalysis/software/CSTdesc.htm


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Steven J Emmerich, Brian Polidoro, James W Axley. Impact of adaptive thermal comfort on climatic Suitability of Natural Ventilation in office Buildings. Energy and Buildings, 2011; DOI: 10.1016/j.enbuild.2011.04.016

Cite This Page:

National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). "New software tool helps evaluate natural cooling options for buildings." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 May 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110525110818.htm>.
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). (2011, May 29). New software tool helps evaluate natural cooling options for buildings. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110525110818.htm
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). "New software tool helps evaluate natural cooling options for buildings." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/05/110525110818.htm (accessed April 16, 2014).

Share This



More Computers & Math News

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

German Researchers Crack Samsung's Fingerprint Scanner

German Researchers Crack Samsung's Fingerprint Scanner

Newsy (Apr. 16, 2014) German researchers have used a fake fingerprint made from glue to bypass the fingerprint security system on Samsung's new Galaxy S5 smartphone. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Twitter, Apple Social Data Purchases Likely to Spur More Mergers and Acquisitions

Twitter, Apple Social Data Purchases Likely to Spur More Mergers and Acquisitions

TheStreet (Apr. 16, 2014) The social media data space is likely to see more mergers and acquisitions following Twitter Inc.'s acquisition of tweet analyzer Gnip Inc. on Tuesday and Apples Inc.'s purchase of Topsy Labs Inc. back in December. One firm in particular, the U.K.'s DataSift Inc., could be on the list of potential buyers. Among other social media startups that could be ripe for picking is Banjo, whose mobile app provides aggregated content by topic and location. Banjo could also be a good fit for Twitter. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bitcoin Exchange Mt. Gox to Liquidate After Rebuilding Rejected

Bitcoin Exchange Mt. Gox to Liquidate After Rebuilding Rejected

TheStreet (Apr. 16, 2014) Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox has agreed to liquidate after a Japanese court rejected its plans to rebuild, according to a report by the Wall Street Journal. Mt. Gox filed for bankruptcy protection in February after announcing about 850,000 bitcoins, worth around $454 million at today's rates, may have been stolen by hackers. It has since recovered 200,000 of the missing bitcoins. The court put Mt. Gox's assets under a provisional administrator's control until bankruptcy proceedings begin. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com
BlackBerry: The Crash That Launched 1,000 Startups

BlackBerry: The Crash That Launched 1,000 Startups

Reuters - Business Video Online (Apr. 16, 2014) Tech startups in BlackBerry's hometown of Waterloo, Ontario, are tapping talent from the struggling smartphone company and filling the void left in the region by its meltdown. Reuters correspondent Euan Rocha visits the region that could become Canada's Silicon Valley. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins