Increases in building air tightness for purposes of energy saving have, unfortunately, also led to a significant increase in the number of instances of condensation damage, particularly in domestic properties. The cost effective control of condensation is a large problem in the United Kingdom, especially for local authorities with large housing stocks.
A unique multiple tracer experimental system has been developed and utilized within commercial buildings to monitor ventilation rates, air exchange efficiency, ages of air (at multiple indoor locations), flow rates of supply and outside air, and percent outside air in supply airstreams. The multiple tracer technique also makes it possible to determine the fractions of air at a monitoring point that entered the building through a particular air handler and by infiltration.
Three balanced airflow ventilation devices were evaluated, an exhaust and supply fan (E&SF), air-to-air heat exchanger (ATAHE), and exhaust air heat pump (EAHP), which can be used to increase the ventilation rate in an R-2000 (tightly constructed) type house. A prototype of the EAHP, which uses a combination of heat pipe and heat pump, was built and tested. A frosting and non-frosting version of the EAHP were evaluated. The non frosting version provided the best overall performance.