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Energy performance of residential buildings: projecting, monitoring and evaluating
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Ecotechnology and Sustainable Building Engineering. (Ekoteknik)
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Energy security and climate change mitigation have been discussed in Sweden since the oil crisis in the 1970s. Sweden has since then increased its share of renewable energy resources to reach the highest level among the EU member states, but is still among the countries with the highest primary energy use per capita. Not least because of that, increasing energy efficiency is important and it is part of the Swedish long term environmental objectives. Large potential for improving energy efficiency can be found in the building sector, mainly in the existing building stock but also in new constructions.

Buildings hold high costs for construction, service and maintenance. Still, their energy efficiency and thermal performance are rarely validated after construction or renovation. As energy efficiency become an important aspects in building design there is a need for accurate tools for assessing the energy performance both before and after building construction. In this thesis criteria for energy efficiency in new residential buildings are studied. Several building design aspects are discussed with regards to final energy efficiency, energy supply-demand interactions and social aspects. The results of this thesis are based on energy modelling, energy measurements and one questionnaire survey. Several existing residential buildings were used as case studies.

The results show that pre-occupancy calculations of specific final energy demand in residential buildings is too rough an indicator to explicitly steer towards lower final energy use in the building sector. Even post occupancy monitoring of specific final energy demand does not always provide a representative image of the energy efficiency of buildings and may result with large variation among buildings with similar thermal efficiency. A post occupancy method of assessing thermal efficiency of building fabrics using thermography is presented. The thermal efficiency of buildings can be increased by design with low shape factor. The shape factor was found to have a significant effect on the final energy demand of buildings and on the use of primary energy. In Nordic climates, atria in multi-storey apartment buildings is a design that have a potential to increase both energy efficiency (by lower shape factor) and enhance social interactions among the occupants.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Östersund: Mittuniversitetet , 2016. , 62 p.
Series
Mid Sweden University doctoral thesis, ISSN 1652-893X ; 238
National Category
Energy Systems Architectural Engineering Building Technologies Environmental Analysis and Construction Information Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-27175ISBN: 978-91-88025-52-4 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-27175DiVA: diva2:908718
Public defence
2016-02-23, G1352, Östersund, 11:04 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2016-03-04 Created: 2016-03-03 Last updated: 2016-03-23Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Primary energy implications of end-use energy efficiency measures in district heated buildings
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Primary energy implications of end-use energy efficiency measures in district heated buildings
2011 (English)In: Energy and Buildings, ISSN 0378-7788, E-ISSN 1872-6178, Vol. 43, no 1, 38-48 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In this study we explore the effects of end-use energy efficiency measures on different district heat production systems with combined heat and power (CHP) plants for base load production and heat-only boilers for peak and medium load productions. We model four minimum cost district heat production systems based on four environmental taxation scenarios, plus a reference district heat system used in Östersund, Sweden. We analyze the primary energy use and the cost of district heat production for each system. We then analyze the primary energy implications of end-use energy efficiency measures applied to a case-study apartment building, taking into account the reduced district heat demand, reduced cogenerated electricity and increased electricity use due to ventilation heat recovery. We find that district heat production cost in optimally-designed production systems is not sensitive to environmental taxation. The primary energy savings of end-use energy efficiency measures depend on the characteristics of the district heat production system and the type of end-use energy efficiency measures. Energy efficiency measures that reduce more of peak load than base load production give higher primary energy savings, because the primary energy efficiency is higher for CHP plants than for boilers. This study shows the importance of analyzing both the demand and supply sides as well as their interaction in order to minimize the primary energy use of district heated buildings.

Keyword
CHP plant; District heat production; Energy efficiency; Environmental taxations; Primary energy; Buildings
National Category
Construction Management Other Environmental Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-11899 (URN)10.1016/j.enbuild.2010.07.029 (DOI)000284682700005 ()2-s2.0-78049480263 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2010-08-06 Created: 2010-08-06 Last updated: 2017-12-12Bibliographically approved
2. Large variations in specific final energy use in Swedish apartment buildings: Causes and solutions
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Large variations in specific final energy use in Swedish apartment buildings: Causes and solutions
2012 (English)In: Energy and Buildings, ISSN 0378-7788, E-ISSN 1872-6178, Vol. 49, 276-285 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

This study examines possible causes for variations in specific final energy use in new apartment buildings. The analysis is based on case studies of 22 new apartment buildings that were constructed as part of the ’Stockholm program for environmentally adapted buildings’. The buildings in the study were chosen because they share similar construction characteristics and similar energy systems but display unexpected large variations in specific energy use. Three causes were found to contribute to variations in monitored specific final energy use in the studied apartment buildings: (1) the time interval between the completion of construction work and the actual energy measurements, (2) the shape factor of the building and (3) the relative size of the common area. In addition, the buildings that participated in the Stockholm program failed to achieve the requirements for the specific final energy use, to a large extent, because of expectations based on the simulated values. The simulated specific final energy use predicted by the energy simulations were on average 19% lower than the monitored values, giving the impression that the buildings would fulfill the program’s energy requirements. The reasons for the low simulated values were determined to be large uncertainties in the input data. © 2012 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Keyword
Common area; Energy simulation; Shape factor; Specific final energy use
National Category
Construction Management Other Environmental Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-16717 (URN)10.1016/j.enbuild.2012.02.015 (DOI)000305875500030 ()2-s2.0-84861823253 (Scopus ID)
Available from: 2012-08-22 Created: 2012-08-17 Last updated: 2017-12-07Bibliographically approved
3. The impact of the shape factor on final energy demand in residential buildings in nordic climates
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The impact of the shape factor on final energy demand in residential buildings in nordic climates
2012 (English)In: World Renewable Energy Forum, WREF 2012, Including World Renewable Energy Congress XII and Colorado Renewable Energy Society (CRES) Annual Conference, 2012, 4260-4264 p.Conference paper, Published paper (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The shape factor of a building is the ratio between its envelope area and its volume. Buildings with a higher shape factor have a larger surface area in proportion to their volume, which results in larger heat losses in cold climates. This study analyzes the impact of the shape factor on the final energy demand by using five existing apartment buildings with different values of shape factor. Each building was simulated for twelve different scenarios: three thermal envelope scenarios and four climate zones. The differences in shape factor between the buildings were found to have a large impact and accounted for 10%-20% of their final energy demand. The impact of the shape factor was reduced with warmer climates and ceased with average outdoor temperature 11ºC-14ºC depending on the thermal envelope performance of the buildings.

Keyword
Apartment buildings; Cold climate; Final energy; Outdoor temperature; Residential building; Shape factor; Surface area
National Category
Building Technologies Architectural Engineering Environmental Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-16426 (URN)2-s2.0-84871535260 (Scopus ID)978-162276092-3 (ISBN)
Conference
World Renewable Energy Forum, WREF 2012, Including World Renewable Energy Congress XII and Colorado Renewable Energy Society (CRES) Annual Conference;Denver, CO;13 May 2012through17 May 2012;Code94564
Projects
Hållbara utvecklingsprocesser
Available from: 2012-06-12 Created: 2012-06-12 Last updated: 2016-03-04Bibliographically approved
4. Adaption of the passive house concept in northern Sweden: a case study of performance
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Adaption of the passive house concept in northern Sweden: a case study of performance
2013 (English)Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

This study analyzes the performance of a case study of low energy house built in Östersund (lat.63°N), Sweden. The building is a semi detached house for two families, with each apartment having afloor space of 160 m2 divided on two floors. The building was constructed during 2010 according tothe Swedish passive house principles with design that meet the requirements for Swedish passivehouses as defined by the Forum for energy efficiency buildings (FEBY) and the Swedish center forzero energy houses (SCNH). The house is connected to the district heating network, which is the mainheat source for domestic water heating, floor heating in the bathroom and water based pre‐heatercoil in the ventilation system. Additionally, a wood stove is installed in the living room for thermalcomfort and convenience of the residents. The two identical residential units in the building wereinhabited in the end of 2010 by families with different characteristics; a family with two youngchildren in one unit and a middle aged couple in the other.A one year energy measurement campaign started in May 2012 for both of the residential units. Themeasurements started after a period of adjustments of the building energy system and include spaceand domestic water heating (separate measurements), household electricity, the amount of fuelwood used in the stove, and indoor thermal conditions. The results show that it is possible to buildpassive houses in the Northern regions of Sweden. The specific final energy demand of the casestudy was 23% lower than the Swedish FEBY‐requirements. Differences were found between themonitored and calculated specific final energy demand. These differences depend to a large extanton the occupants’ behavior and household characteristics. The final energy demand for heating anddomestic water heating found to vary significantly between the two households.

Keyword
Passive house, Sweden, final energy, energy measurement, occupants behaviour
National Category
Environmental Analysis and Construction Information Technology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-21001 (URN)
Conference
Passivhus Norden 2013, Göteborg,Sweden, 15-17 October 2013
Projects
HUP
Available from: 2014-01-10 Created: 2014-01-10 Last updated: 2016-03-04Bibliographically approved

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