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Adaptive building envelope simulation in current design practice: findings from interviews with practitioners about their understanding of methods, tools and workarounds and implications for future tool developments

Borkowski, E; Rovas, D; Raslan, R; (2021) Adaptive building envelope simulation in current design practice: findings from interviews with practitioners about their understanding of methods, tools and workarounds and implications for future tool developments. Intelligent Buildings International 10.1080/17508975.2021.1902257. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Adaptive building envelopes can dynamically adapt to environmental changes to improve thermal building performance. To predict the performance of design proposals with adaptive building envelopes, Building Performance Simulation (BPS) tools can be employed. However, one shortcoming of existing tools is their limited extensibility, which implies that accurately predicting adaptive building envelope performance remains a challenge and requires ad hoc approaches. This challenge has made practitioners reticent in considering adaptive building envelopes, which in turn has led to a slow uptake of them in the built environment. This study seeks to advance the understanding of the limitations of adaptive building envelope simulation in current design practice and to suggest implications for future tool developments. To this aim, the study adopts a user-centred perspective through interviews with experts in the field. Findings suggest that current BPS tools hinder the reliable prediction of adaptive building envelope performance, as accurately representing the level of detail of the building envelope is challenging. The subsequent workarounds applied are either time- and cost-intensive or do not consider the dynamic building envelope components. More flexible modelling approaches that allow for rapid prototyping and easy integration are required to enable designers to take full advantage of adaptive building envelopes.

Type: Article
Title: Adaptive building envelope simulation in current design practice: findings from interviews with practitioners about their understanding of methods, tools and workarounds and implications for future tool developments
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/17508975.2021.1902257
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/17508975.2021.1902257
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2021 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/), which permits non-commercial re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, and is not altered, transformed, or built upon in any way.
Keywords: Adaptive building envelopes; building performance simulation; stakeholder interviews; decision support; design practice; industry feedback
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10127478
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