Establishing Natural Ventilation Performance in Early Design

  • YEAR
    Steele, Jack
    Bakshi, Nilesh
    Donn, Michael
    Wallace, James
    2019 Conference Papers
    Conference Papers
    Sustainable Architectural Design-An Interdisciplinary Approach


Current design trends are making residential housing increasingly air tight. A modern house in New
Zealand has an estimated infiltration rate of around 0.25 ach standard pressure, whereas, international
guidelines recommend a minimum fresh air supply rate of between 0.35 ach to 0.5 ach. Designing ventilation sustainably, or to do it well, is a balancing act. On one hand, occupants want and require fresh air while on the other, they don’t want increased air conditioning costs. This paper looks at the different types of ventilation, natural and mechanical, and the strategies that allow them to work, while also compiling information into an Excel based ventilation calculator for practicing architects. The calculator acts as a guide for assisting architects when designing ventilation. Calculations are run to check the design against code requirements and then suggest ventilation options to meet said requirements. Identified first are ventilation strategies that can be designed into new residential housing including positive, negative, and balanced pressure systems. The effectiveness and calculations required to investigate each strategy is determined. Secondly, the differences that pressure variation can cause on the ventilation rate is determined and related to good design practices.

Keywords: Ventilation; Housing; Calculator; Architect.


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