Orientation, building height and sky view factor as energy efficiency design parameters
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The energy efficiency of buildings should be a goal at the pre-design phase, though the importance of the design variables is often neglected even during the design process. Highlighting the relevance of these design variables, this research studies the relationships of building location variables with the electrical energy consumption of residential units. The following building design parameters are considered: orientation, story height and sky view factor (SVF). The consideration of the SVF as a location variable contributes to the originality of this research. Data of electrical energy consumption and users' profiles were collected and several variables were considered for the development of an Artificial Neural Network model. This model allows the determination of the relative importance of each variable. The results show that the apartments' orientation is the most important design variable for the energy consumption, although the story height and the sky view factor play a fundamental role in that consumption too. We pointed out that building heights above twenty-four meters do not optimize the energy efficiency of the apartments and also that an increasing SVF can influence the energy consumption of an apartment according to their orientation.
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