Responsive shading and energy efficiency in office buildings: an Australian case study

    Bunning, Myles E
    Crawford, Robert H
    Buildings and energy


Solar radiation allowed to be transmitted to air-conditioned space through a building’s glazing can be a major contributor to the total annual energy requirement for cooling a building. Without the presence of a sufficient barrier to absorb or reflect the radiation transmitted through the glazing, significant resources are committed to providing air-conditioning and maintaining lighting levels. Shading acts as a barrier to solar radiation however, for shading to further reduce energy demand by being responsive, it is required to be automated so that it modifies the amount of shading provided according to external conditions. The operational energy component of the building’s life cycle energy is to be examined for internal and external responsive venetians for a case study building. As part of this study the impact of venetian shading upon the sizing of the HVAC as well as the differences between temperate and sub-tropical climates is also assessed. Overall, the use of smaller HVAC systems in conjunction with external responsive venetian shading was shown to reduce the building’s annual operational primary energy by up to 27% in comparison to a static shading option. By examining the energy impacts of responsive shading, this study provides guidance for energy efficient building design.

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