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Assessing the impact of occupant behaviour on the energy performance of AQUA-certified school buildings

Grant number: 19/13474-7
Support type:Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate
Effective date (Start): October 01, 2019
Effective date (End): May 31, 2023
Field of knowledge:Applied Social Sciences - Architecture and Town Planning - Architecture and Urbanism Technology
Principal Investigator:Leticia de Oliveira Neves
Grantee:Paula Brumer Franceschini
Home Institution: Faculdade de Engenharia Civil, Arquitetura e Urbanismo (FEC). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil

Abstract

The building sector is responsible for 36% of global energy consumption. Besides the lighting, air conditioning system and others appliances, the occupant behaviour also plays an important role on building energy use. Within this background, school buildings represent an opportunity to improve energy efficiency since its architectural design is in a unique position to demonstrate energy awareness in the education of children, which are the future active citizens. Yet, existing studies regarding building energy use are focused mainly on the building and system features and in the residential and office contexts. This study aims to evaluate the impact of occupant behaviour on the energy performance of classrooms in school buildings managed by the Foundation for Education Development (FDE) of the state of São Paulo, Brazil, and certified under AQUA certification, in order to provide occupant-centric building design and operation inputs. First, a systematic literature review will be carried out for the purpose of raising up information about existing models of occupant behaviour and thermal comfort for school buildings. Second, a data collection of the 20 FDE AQUA-certified schools will be realized with the purpose of creating groups of school buildings with similar features and analyse them as a whole. Third, the occupant behaviour and environmental variables of classrooms from three selected school buildings will be monitored. Then, a building energy simulation model will be calibrated against real data collected in situ to explore different scenarios of systems' operation (air-conditioning, fans and/or natural ventilation). Knowledge from occupant behaviour extracted from the field study analysis will be tested in the calibrated model in terms of their consequences on building performance. Finally, guidelines to help practitioners to choose the most appropriate occupant modelling approach, based on occupant behaviour, will be developed. (AU)