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Passive Design Features for Energy-Efficient Residential Buildings in Tropical Climates

This study aimed at identifying passive design features through extensive literature study that can be incorporated in residential buildings to make them energy efficient. The study also aimed at identifying changes in the design process that can affect energy efficiency in residential buildings.

It has analyzed the design features of typical residential buildings representative of upper middle income households in Dhaka through a case study conducted in Dhaka.

It also analyzed the present electric energy use for cooling and lighting typical residential buildings of upper middle income households in Dhaka and the possible energy savings by adopting certain energy efficient features in the case study building.

It also distinguishes the different roles of developers, architects, interior designers, land owners (clients) and residents that can act as a barrier in achieving energy efficiency in residential buildings.

The findings from this study indicate that doubling the thickness of external walls on east and west, use of hollow clay tiles instead of weathering course for roofs and use of appropriate horizontal overhang ratios for all four orientations can reduce the cooling load of the case study building by 64% and hence reduce the total energy use of the building by 26%.

Finally it can be concluded that the process of designing energy efficient residential buildings is not a ‘one-man’s show’. Architects, developers, interior designers and clients are the other actors who can bring a change in the design practice.
Source: KTH
Author: Ahsan, Tahmina

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