A Study on Attic Space for Comfort Air Conditioning

Lay Summary 

The study compares three different models of buildings (i.e. plain model which is currently practiced, fully enclosed attic model, attic model with adjustable window). The project was instigated by designing an attic model in the SolidWorks and later imported in ANSYS for validating the thermal mass properties of air inside of the space. Furthermore, a house design was modelled in SketchUp based on the blueprint and that was equipped with material properties, and parameters required for heating and cooling load calculations such as- activity, occupancy, lighting and electric equipment, fenestration and infiltration. The process was repeated for further three modifications in the same building which were- fully enclosed attic model, attic with window wall ratio 0.15 and 0.3. Lastly, the models were subjected for simulation and all the obtained thermal loads were compared to find a perfect model. While the ANSYS simulation affirmed the thermal stratification by the movement of air inside the attic space, the OpenStudio simulation yielded the peak heating and cooling loads for all the models. Lastly, all the values were compared and it was observed that the fully enclosed attic model was suited for winter as it reduced the heating load by 6.36 kW, whilst the system with WWR 0.3 displayed a reduction of cooling requirement by 4.54 kW. The final result suggested that the attic roof model with adjustable window will greatly optimize the energy-usage consumption and reduce energy bills. The study is one of its first for suggesting a building optimization for energy efficient buildings

Start date 
18 Jul 2019