Building Simulation

Simulation is the process of making a simplified model of some complex system and using it to predict the behavior of the original system. During the past two decades, advancements in computer technology made it possible for building simulation to be part of the design process. The course will introduce computational modeling theory, its complexity and techniques. Specific focus will be on how existing computational tools can be used during various stages of the design process. The Blackbox vs transparent simulations use will be explained and learned to illustrate their limitations and potential to design. The course will provide students with 1) An understanding of building simulation methods and their underlying principles 2) Hands-on experience in using environmental computer simulation models.

State-of-the-art computer models for thermal, ventilation (Computational Fluid Dynamics) and solar analysis will be introduced. Innovative techniques on how to use these models in architectural design will be explored. A building will be analyzed throughout the semester in the following areas:

· Climate and Site Analysis
· Ventilation and Air Flow
· Thermal and Energy Systems
· Design Integration

Although current tools are evolving, their underlying principles and modeling techniques remain the same. As a result, class room lectures will be given on specific topics each week related to these principles and modeling techniques. This will be followed by introductions to various related computational tools in the lab to learn how to apply the modeling techniques studied and understand how to utilize the output of these tools for design and or analysis.

A series of analysis projects will be assigned after each topic presented to provide students with hands-on experience in using the computer models introduced. A final project will use all the techniques studied to redesign an existing building to optimize its energy use. Guidance on how to integrate the knowledge and different techniques leaned will be provided while working on the project.

Students are assumed to have experience in using geometric modeling applications.

Grades will be based on the assignments and the final project.

Please note that enrollment in this course is limited to 18, and 10 places are reserved for students in their first year of the MDesS Energy and Environment track as this course is required for them (These students must still select the course in the limited-enrollment course lottery). Six spaces will remain in the lottery for students in architecture or mdes programs via the limited enrollment course lottery.