The building sector is facing an increasing complexity of energy and environmental challenges. Building Performance Simulation (BPS) has proved to be effective tools to support the design and operation of high-performance buildings, such as zero-energy buildings or zero-emission buildings. BPS combines dynamic (energy) simulation with computational modeling and draws upon the disciplines of heat and mass transfer, thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, lighting, building technology, thermal and visual comfort, numerical methods, environmental science and human behavior. BPS is contributing to fostering innovation in the design of high-performance buildings with respect to new technological possibilities and environmental limitations.
A strong emphasis will be placed upon the use of a BPS software, but the scope of this course is not limited to training on applying a given software. Rather, students will learn the basic computational modeling assumptions and will learn to build a series of increasingly complex models that allow exploring key features and limitations of the adopted software. The subjects will be developed from basic principles assuming limited knowledge of computers and the adopted software.
Knowledge: – The fundamentals of BPS – The underlying theoretical models for BPS software – The principles, assumptions, and limitations in some of the models implemented in BPS software – Quality control of building energy software – The technical and non-technical aspects of using BPS software during building design, retrofitting and maintenance – The application of a BPS software in research, analysis, and design.
Skills: – To choose the most suitable BPS software based on the simulation objectives – To create a building energy model, by adopting the most suitable modeling methods to reach the simulation objectives – To control the reliability of the simulation output – To assess (or estimate) the performance of a building – To effectively use simulation results during the design, retrofitting or management process of a building – To get “hands-on” experience on a BPS software
General competence: – An understanding of the background of building performance simulation – An understanding of thermal and visual comfort and indoor air quality, and of their relationship to energy use in buildings – An understanding of the behavior of a building envelope under dynamic conditions, – An understanding of integrating passive means and renewable energy generation systems in a building model.