The present study describes the potential improvement of summer comfort and reduction of energy consumption that can be achieved by adopting passive cooling solutions, such as daytime comfort ventilation with increased air velocities and night cooling, in domestic buildings. By means of the IDA ICE based software EIC Visualizer, the performances of ten ventilation and cooling strategies have been tested in four different climatic zones across Europe (Athens, Rome, Berlin and Copenhagen). Thermal comfort and indoor air quality (IAQ) have been evaluated according to the standard EN15251 for the summer period of the year only. The study revealed that thermal comfort can be achieved by passive means in all four locations. It was also found that, with the exception of Athens, the initially investigated combination of ventilative and night cooling is too aggressive, causing overcooling and increasing the energy consumption. A moderate strategy performed well without overheating and overcooling in Rome, Berlin and Copenhagen. In general the natural ventilation turned out to be capable to achieve a very good IAQ and a reduction in energy consumption in all locations, when compared with mechanical ventilation or mechanical cooling.
Improvement of summer comfort by passive cooling with increased ventilation and night cooling
33rd AIVC Conference " Optimising Ventilative Cooling and Airtightness for [Nearly] Zero-Energy Buildings, IAQ and Comfort", Copenhagen, Denmark, 10-11 October 2012