November 28, 2005

Intersections of the architectural shell and mechanical equipment

Why energy efficiency is not only a matter for technicians, but also for achitects.

Common intersections of the architectural shell (designed for immediate experience by people) and the mechanical equipment (designed separately, to maintain indoor climate):

  • Daylighting to reduce electric lighting power use and cooling load. Requires a thin section depth, lots of skin area relative to floor area, and good window/skylight design

  • Solar heat gain during heating season (desired). Requires orientation, massing, window/skylight design

  • Solar heat gain during cooling months (undesired).

  • Glare control from daylight.

  • Tectonics of energy strategy and building operations.

  • Social use of space related to heat, cool, light, breezes.

  • Facade and window design.

  • Shade design related to cooling load and glare control.

  • Control of personal environment, especially in office and classroom design.

  • Exposure of structure and indoor climate control systems; integration with look and feel of the building.

  • Spatial requirements and architectural integration of climate control system.

  • Room volumes related to thermal comfort.

  • Solar gain to different parts of the building; allocation of program areas.

  • Lighting control systems relative to activities, architectural shell, and outdoor climate.

  • Structural design, cladding design, materials sourcing.

  • Basic scheme; form and massing relative to local climate, sun and wind patterns.

  • Thermal capacity, storage of heat or cool in the building fabric.

What else fits on this list? Are there common integration solutions that can be described generically for different climates? Are there common conflicts between the optimal configuration of the architectural shell for aesthetic experience and climate performance? Can we catalog these in a generic way?

No comments: