This paper proposes a new approach to thermostat design. For many years, thermostats have been "dumb" devices, meaning that they react to their environment either by direct user control or by previous user programming. This new approach details an intelligent thermostat that learns about the behavior of the occupants and their environment and controls ambient temperature to maintain comfort according to human specifications. In that way, the thermostat reduces the number of interactions with the user and eliminates the need for them to learn how to program the device.
Passive solar buildings are expected to provide their intended functions, safely and without adverse health effects, and at substantial energy savings compared to conventional buildings. Moreover, passive solar buildings are frequently considered as appropriate technology in parts of the world where the incidence rates of diseases associated with indoor exposures may be the highest.
The objective of the RESET project was to quantify the savings that could be made by resetting the energy related controls of buildings to their original or optimum settings. The method was to identify a range of office buildings and carry out energy and management audits. Advice was given on incorrectly set controls, and estimates were made of the potential savings if the controls were set correctly. Cost savings of between 10% and 30% were almost always identified and could be made at little or no cost.
The performances of self regulating natural ventilation devices (devices of which the openingsection varies as function of the pressure difference across the device) strongly depend on thetype of building and its leakage characteristics. In like manner, the climatic conditionsstrongly impact on the achieved ventilation rates. As a result, it is not possible to express thepotential benefit of self-regulating natural ventilation devices in an unambiguous way. This isnot contributing to a good understanding of the potential of such devices in daily practice.
This research is part of project NATVENT (TM), a concerted action of nine institutions ofseven European countries under the Joule-3 program. It aims to open the barriers that blocks theuse of natural ventilation systems in office buildings in cold and moderate climate zones.Natural night-time ventilation cooling is a very effective means to remove the heat,accumulated in the building fabrics during office hours. Moreover, it requires no energy at all.Cooling with natural ventilation has it limits; more than 6 air changes per hour have no morecooling effect.