High Performance Buildings and Systems Integration

The interrelationships of environmental control systems as they relate to high performance/well integrated buildings will be explored in details. The course will address the main principles of such buildings and allow participants to develop their critical views about buildings’ environmental performance. Projects such as residential, educational and commercial buildings will be analyzed. Systems’ integration and innovations will also be studied. Other factors affecting high performance buildings such as energy standards and how they relate to current sustainability rating systems globally will be discussed. The relationship between energy conservation and the principles of initial building cost versus life cycle costs will also be presented.

The first part of the course is used to analyze the design and performance of existing high performance buildings. This study will be accompanied by lectures about the fundamentals of systems’ components and current innovations, in the US and around the world. Additional lectures and discussions will focus on how these systems can be integrated with innovative building envelopes. A site visit will help to understand the systems and their integration.

The second part of the course will focus on developing an understanding of the concepts of environmental performance and the factors affecting the design, construction and operation of well integrated buildings. Lectures will introduce the use of sensing and simulation tools to help with this understanding. Main energy standards globally, life cycle costing along with energy production innovations and technologies will also be presented.

The final part of the course will be a study and redesign of a building. The layout of this building will be provided to the course participants. The work will begin with a proposal for the building envelope. Based on this design and the functional needs in the building, the environmental control systems will be developed through computational simulations. All concepts and techniques learned in the class will be utilized in this study; which will form the final project of the class.

Assignments will be given after each topic presented. Most assignments will utilize physical and computational tools to investigate different aspects of energy conservation in buildings and analyze buildings energy use and systems. When computational tools are presented, the computer lab will be used to provide instructions.

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