Thermal comfort standards, measured internal temperatures and thermal resilience to climate change of free-running buildings: a case-study of hospital wards
journal contributionposted on 11.06.2013, 11:35 by Kevin Lomas, Renganathan Giridharan
In view of the warming climate, there is increasing concern about the likelihood of overheating inside UK buildings that are not mechanically cooled. A number of studies are examining this matter, of which the DeDeRHECC project is one. The recent availability of the UKCP09 future climate data projections has acted as a stimulus to such work. This paper illustrates how field measurement, thermal modelling and the generation of current and future typical and extreme weather years, can be used to provide a picture of the resilience of buildings to climate change. The unified framework for assessing both measurements and current and future predictions that is offered by the BSEN15251 thermal comfort standard is a crucial component. The paper focuses on internal temperatures during the day and at night in wards within the tower building at Addenbrooke’s hospital, which has a hybrid ventilation strategy. The maintenance of thermal comfort in such spaces is critically important and installing air-conditioning in response to climate change is expensive and potentially energy intensive. Fans appear to be a simple retrofit measure that may substantially improve the wards’ resilience to climate change even in extreme years. Whilst healthcare provides the back cloth, the methodology developed has a much wider utility for assessing thermal comfort in buildings in the current and future climate of the UK.
This work was supported by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) [grant number EP/H009612/1].
- Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering