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Politecnico di Milano (2016)

The role of natural ventilation in providing thermal comfort area in housing & urban design in hot & arid regions


Titre : The role of natural ventilation in providing thermal comfort area in housing & urban design in hot & arid regions


Université de soutenance : Politecnico di Milano

Grade : Tesi di Dottorato 2016

Natural ventilation in buildings relies on wind and thermal buoyancy as driving forces. Humankind has used these driving forces throughout history to create the desired thermal environment and to transport away undesired contaminants. From the first primitive living quarters with the fireplace in the center of a tent or a cabin, the technique we take advantage of to control and adjust our indoor climate has grown ever more sophisticated. This technique has in the 20th century been dominated by mechanical ventilation and air conditioning. These technologies have developed into systems of great complexity with an increasing number of components, need for space, and use of energy. Despite this, many of the mechanical systems do not manage to deliver the desired indoor climate. Because of this contradiction, the focus has again been put on simpler, more robust and less energy consuming solutions. The driving pressures derived from wind and thermal buoyancy are low compared to those produced by fans in mechanical ventilation systems. It is therefore necessary to minimize the resistance in the airflow path through the building. Thus, the building itself, with its envelope, rooms, corridors and stairways, rather than the ducts familiar from mechanical ventilation systems, is used as air path. A natural ventilation concept is therefore highly integrated in the building body and will consequently have influence on building design and architecture. Le Corbusier’s perhaps most famous dictum was “a house is a machine for living in.” In the context of natural ventilation it can be said that the building in itself is a machine, and not a structure to put a machine into. This work examines the relationship between building design and natural ventilation and in bigger scale the relation between urban design and natural ventilation. The work tries in the first instance to seek out the architectural consequences of natural ventilation, and in the next instance to find out to what extent the natural airflow has a potential of being a design criterion, a contributing parameter in the design of buildings and in the urban design. The primary goal of this study is to offer a better understanding of the architectural presuppositions for utilization of natural ventilation, and from that suggest some architectural possibilities associated with the utilization of natural driving forces. The target group of this thesis is primarily architects in general and researchers within the field, but also other actors in the building industry, e.g. consultants, contractors and building owners, may find this study of interest. The most important findings of this work are that : • Utilization of natural ventilation in buildings has architectural consequences as well as possibilities. • Natural ventilation primarily affects the facades, the roof/silhouette and the layout and organization of the interior spaces. • The ventilation principle applied (single-sided, cross- or stack ventilation) together with the nature of the supply and extract paths, i.e. whether they are local or central, are of key importance for the architectural consequences and possibilities. • The impact of urban form and geometry on urban climate like size, density, orientation, ventilation. • Passive cooling of the building in traditional methods and reuse of these methods with modern architecture. • Designing a naturally ventilated building is more difficult than designing a similar but mechanically ventilated building. An interdisciplinary approach from the initial stages of design is mandatory for achieving successful natural ventilation concepts. • Guide lines for using natural ventilation in urban design and housing.

Mots clés : ventilazione naturale ; progettazione urbana ; comfort termico ; la progettazione degli edifici — natural ventilation ; urban design ; thermal comfort ; building design


Page publiée le 25 novembre 2016, mise à jour le 17 mars 2019