Microclimate in architecture

Book Description Review Quotes Contents Book Description Robert Brown helps us see that a "thermally comfortable microclimate" is the very foundation of well-designed and well-used outdoor places. Brown argues that as we try to minimize human-induced changes to the climate and reduce our dependence on fossil fuels-as some areas become warmer, some cooler, some wetter, and some drier, and all become more expensive to regulate-good microclimate design will become increasingly important. In the future, according to Brown, all designers will need to understand climatic issues and be able to respond to their challenges. Brown describes the effects that climate has on outdoor spaces-using vivid illustrations and examples-while providing practical tools that can be used in everyday design practice.

Microclimate in architecture

Building materials Before the advent of modern mechanical means for obtaining thermal comfort, people in the hot arid and warm humid zones were forced to devise ways to cool their houses with only natural sources of energy and physical phenomena.

Generally, these solutions have been found to be much more in harmony with the human physiological functions than such modern means as electrically powered desert coolers and air-conditioners.

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This situation is unchanged for the majority of people in the industrially developing countries, where the conventional energy sources of the industrialized world are not readily available at affordable prices.

There is a clear need to further develop the traditional systems based on natural resources. Before inventing or proposing new mechanical solutions, traditional solutions in vernacular architecture should be evaluated, and then adopted or modified and developed to make them compatible with modern requirements.

This process should be based on modern developments in the physical and human sciences, including the fields of materials technology, physics, aerodynamics, thermodynamics, meteorology, and physiology.

Microclimate in architecture

Architectural design for a comfortable microclimate In designing and planning for the hot arid and warm humid zones, two of the main problems confronting the architect are to ensure protection against heat and provide adequate cooling.

The Earth's major source of heat and light, the sun, also creates the secondary climatic elements of wind and humidity that affect physiological comfort.

These are caused by the configuration and nature of the local surface, such as the mountains, plains, oceans, deserts, and forests. The interplay between this astronomical source of energy with the effects it causes and the landscape creates the microclimate, which is the concern of the science of meteorology.

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However, the built environment produces changes in the microclimate. The configuration of buildings, their orientations, and their arrangement in space create a specific microclimate for each site.

To this must be added the building materials, surface textures and colors of exposed surfaces of the buildings, and the design of open spaces, such as streets, courtyards, gardens, and squares. These man-made elements interact with the natural microclimate to determine the factors affecting comfort in the built environment: There is no doubt that certain configurations create better microclimates than others.

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For each site, there is an optimum arrangement in space that the designer should seek and use as a standard of reference in the process of deciding upon a certain design. Where it can be avoided, it is inappropriate and irresponsible to implement a design that adds even one degree of temperature or reduces air movement by one centimeter per second, if this would negatively affect thermal comfort.

This obviously includes defective designs which require energyintensive mechanical means for their rectification.

Microclimate in architecture

Building materials The materials surrounding the occupants of a building are of prime importance for protection against heat and cold. Great care must be taken in the choice of the wall and roof materials and their thicknesses with respect to their physical properties, such as thermal conductivity, resistivity and transmission, and optical reflectivity.

Considering an external wall exposed to a high outside air temperature and a lower inside air temperature see fig. The total resistance is composed of the resistance to heat flow through the material, the interfacial resistance at the external surface, and the interfacial resistance at the internal surfaces.

Since the interfacial resistances are determined primarily by temperature conditions over which the builder has little control, his principal effect on the heat transmittance is on changing the resistance to heat flow through the wall material.

To reduce the heat transmission from one side of a wall to the other, the thermal transmittance must be reduced as much as possible by either increasing the thickness of the wall or using materials of lower thermal conductivity and therefore of higher resistance.

Often walls composed of several materials, as shown in figure 2, are used to provide the desired thermal and aesthetic wall characteristics.


Coefficients of thermal transmittance for a variety of wall materials and of combinations of such materials are provided in Appendix 3. These coefficients are given in the practical units commonly used: In hot arid climates, the coefficient of thermal transmittance should be about 1.

Table 9 lists the thicknesses of walls composed of various construction materials needed to achieve coefficients of approximately 1. These tables do not contain data for mud-brick walls. However, experiment has proved that mud brick is most appropriate for achieving thermal comfort in addition to being widely available to all segments of the population.

Insix small experimental buildings were built on the grounds of the Cairo Building Research Centre, using different materials. They were used to evaluate cost, local availability, and thermal comfort. Two modes of these six represented extremes.May 02,  · A microclimate is an area that has a distinct climate that differs from the area around it.

It can be as small as a few square feet or meters, or as large as many miles or kilometers. Understanding microclimates is really important in order to take advantage of the heat, cold, protection, moisture, dryness, or whatever the . 4 | DESIGN WITH MICROCLIMATE Figure The community meeting place in this small village in Malawi was on the porch of the bicycle repair shop.

There was just enough room for everyone to . 3. Architecture and comfort. Architectural design for a comfortable microclimate Building materials.

Before the advent of modern mechanical means for obtaining thermal comfort, people in the hot arid and warm humid zones were forced to devise ways to cool their houses with only natural sources of energy and physical phenomena.

FuturArc Interview: Timothy Beatley; Teresa Heinz Professor of Sustainable Communities, Department of Urban and Environmental Planning, School of Architecture, University of Virginia (UVA) read more. Microclimates exist, for example, near bodies of water which may cool the local atmosphere, or in heavy urban areas where brick, concrete, and asphalt absorb the sun's energy, heat up, and re-radiate that heat to the ambient air: the resulting urban heat island is a kind of microclimate.

THE. Residences. Rising 19 floors with 36 apartments, Pelican Grove truly offers its own microclimate within an Indian metropolis. Airy living spaces flow into expansive decks with private Jacuzzis, large bedrooms with private balconies, bathrooms with outdoor .

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