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Influence of living walls on the thermal performance of buildings

Fernando Durso Neves Caetano
Total Authors: 1
Document type: Master's Dissertation
Institution: Universidade Estadual de Campinas. Faculdade de Engenharia Civil, Arquitetura e Urbanismo
Defense date:
Examining board members:
Denise Helena Silva Duarte; Pedro Roberto Furlani
Advisor: Lucila Chebel Labaki

In cities the materials used to cover the ground have properties that change the balance of natural cycles, leading to the shaping of harmful phenomena as the heat islands and urban floods. From this evidence many towns currently seek the restoration of vegetation cover as a way to provide environmental comfort without neglecting the sustainable development. But despite its potential for passive mitigation, not always the insertion of large green areas in cities is feasible due the high value and demand for land use. In this sense the green skins provide an alternative when using the buildings envelope in order to add vegetatios in cities; usually, the roofs and walls of buildings characterize underutilized areas, but with a direct influence on its internal environment. Because of this, the technology of vegetal coatings has attracted the attention of many researchers in the field of urban climate and environmental comfort. Within this context, this research addressed a variation of this technologies known as living walls, which proposes the creation of a vertical greenery system attached to the masonry of the buildings. The research had a focus on the thermal analysis, using for this an experimental approach with comparative measurements. Its main objective has been to verify the extent to which an external living wall influences the thermal behavior of the envelope and the interior of a building. The experiment took place at the State University of Campinas campus, within the constructive and climatic reality of southeastern Brazil. During its realization were measured environmental parameters (air, superficial, and black-globe temperatures; relative humidity) in two similar buildings (one exposed and other protected with the vegetal skin) during the summer months (October 2013 to January 2014). In addition, the research also evaluated the feasibility of using different plant species in the system, as well as technical parameters referring to irrigation, nutrition and plants attachment. The main results showed that the living wall provided an average thermal damping up to 19° C at the outer surface temperature of the envelope, and an average thermal lag of up to 4 hours for the warmer hours of the day; inside, the presence of the vegetal skin provided a mitigation up to 2,73 ° C in the operative temperature to the hottest hours of the average day. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 12/18717-6 - Influence of green walls on thermal performance of buildings
Grantee:Fernando Durso Neves Caetano
Support type: Scholarships in Brazil - Master