Monitoring UK hospital building type performance
2017-04-04T08:15:55Z (GMT) by
The British National Health Service (NHS) is one of the largest public services in the world and consequentially in 2004 it produced 25% of the total public sector carbon emissions for England. To meet national carbon targets the NHS must reduce its emissions; 26% by 2020, 64% by 2030, 80% by 2050 and is therefore interested in the development of strategies for reducing carbon dioxide emissions from buildings. The NHS building stock consists of a range of building archetypes constructed over the past 100 years. The energy used for heating and cooling hospital premises is the source of 22% of all NHS carbon emissions. The individual buildings are distributed across hospital sites that often have centralised energy plants, which make it difficult to monitor energy consumption on an individual building level. This thesis develops a method for monitoring the energy consumption of individual hospital buildings. The method was implemented on three case study buildings at Bradford Royal infirmary (BRI); a 1920s Nightingale, a nucleus and a modern modular building. Lessons were gathered from these studies to advance the knowledge on monitoring in UK hospitals. One of the key findings was that empirical models based on measured data are useful for estimating individual buildings annual heating energy consumption. The results show that the mechanically ventilated nucleus building had the highest energy consumption (808.7kWh/m2), followed by the naturally ventilated Nightingale building (420.7kWh/m2) and then the mixed-mode modular building (289.0kWh/m2). The internal environment was optimal in the nucleus building, but the Nightingale and modular buildings underperformed, with the modular overheating in summer and both buildings failing to meet air quality recommendations. Taking energy consumption and summer thermal resilience into consideration the Nightingale building had the best performance, demonstrating the longevity of the traditional design. The work identified a number of useful hospital design features; well-insulated heavyweight building fabric, well-controlled space heating, use of heat recovery ventilation and installation of localised monitoring equipment. Further useful research into this area could involve: using dynamic thermal simulation to test recommended building design features, investigating the monitoring method on a wider sample of sites and investigating air quality monitoring in hospitals.