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A study into how the occupants of naturally ventilated buildings use environmental control strategies to modify their internal environment

Zhang, Yufan (2007) A study into how the occupants of naturally ventilated buildings use environmental control strategies to modify their internal environment. PhD thesis, University of Sheffield.

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Nowadays, issues regarding building stock are highly important in the quest to reduce overall UK energy consumption and finding prime targets for cuts in carbon emissions. Of all the main consumers of energy, the fact how occupants use and operate the building plays a crucial role. Therefore, it is necessary to have a thorough understanding of the occupant response to environmental controlling systems in buildings because the building should be designed not only to satisfy comfort requirements but also to be used with a low input of energy. This research can be seen as an attempt to explore such issues. It examines various environmental issues such as motivating forces and influential effects related to the occupant control behaviour with special attention to the usage of those simple, easy-to-use and robust means that the occupant is able to see and almost immediately experience the results of the actions. Two naturally ventilated buildings in Sheffield were selected as the study cases. Their architectural features were examined, including environmental situation, occupant identification and architectural speciality. Both buildings' blinds (shading rolls) and windows were recorded by photograph twice a day for 16 months continuously. At the same time, the outside hourly weather parameters and inside physical parameters were collected. A questionnaire survey and a face-to-face interview were also carried out in order to investigate the thermal, visual and acoustic comfort sensation and an indication of the motivating forces for manual control obtained. From a sustainability perspective, the study has provided knowledge that enables designers to anticipate how a design encourages that the sustainable interaction between the occupant operation behaviour, building components and/or systems, and conversely, avoid built conditions where occupant interaction may cause sustainable penalties. This understanding may well lead to the building using less energy to maintain comfort. The study could also provide opportunities for decision makers to understand the current situations of the buildings that were selected as case studies. The result of this research may be used as a work-base for successful improvement and give confidence to embark on the design of naturally ventilated buildings.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Social Sciences (Sheffield) > School of Architecture (Sheffield)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.444962
Depositing User: EThOS Import Sheffield
Date Deposited: 01 Jul 2014 14:30
Last Modified: 01 Jul 2014 14:30
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/6087

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