Use of Thermal Inertia for Reduction of HVAC Energy Consumption in Cooling Dominated and Mixed Climates

Apr 13, 2015

This paper discusses potential ways to improve the thermal design of thermal envelopes in residential and commercial buildings to minimize the cooling energy consumption in cooling-dominated and mixed climates. This paper cites a number of field demonstration projects where both conventional thermal mass and Phase Change Materials (PCMs) were successfully used in the whole building scale. Dynamic thermal characteristics of various configurations of thermal insulation, massive structural components, and blends of phase change materials (PCMs) with insulations are analyzed. A series of whole building energy simulations are used in this work to analyze the dynamic response of these thermal systems. Conventional assemblies using concrete-foam sandwiches were utilized as an illustration of massive wall applications. Energy performance of PCM applications was demonstrated with examples of attic-floor applications. The work presented here confirms that interior facing location of the thermally massive building components is most beneficial from the perspective of energy savings.

(This entry contains a presentation in PDF.)

Jan Kośny, Fraunhofer CSE, Boston, MA, USA
Elizabeth Kossecka, Polish Academy Sciences, Warsaw, Poland
Ali Fallahi, Fraunhofer CSE, Boston, MA, USA
David Yarbrough, R&D Services, Inc., Cookeville, TN, USA
BEST4 Conference proceedings
Presented at: 
BEST4 Conference
Published & professionally reviewed by: 
BEST4 Technical Committee, National Institute of Building Sciences

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