Building energy use modes and thermal comfort

Kadir Amasyali, Nora El-Gohary

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Improving the energy efficiency of residential and office buildings is an important way of reducing energy consumption and CO2 emissions and eliminating their associated adverse environmental impacts. On the other hand, people spend the majority of their times in buildings and demand comfortable, healthy, and productive indoor environments. Building energy conservation and occupant comfort are usually considered to be conflicting objectives. Towards exploring ways of reducing building energy consumption without sacrifice in thermal comfort, this paper aims to study the relationship between energy use mode, thermal comfort, and energy consumption in office buildings. To conduct an initial experimental study, a floor of an office building in Philadelphia, PA, was instrumented and monitored. Cooling energy consumption, indoor temperature, occupant feedback on thermal comfort, and outdoor temperature data were collected for three months. A clustering algorithm was used to identify three energy use modes: saver, balanced, and spender. The correlation between building operation efficiency and thermal comfort was investigated, and thermal comfort levels under different energy use modes were compared. The results show that there is a very weak correlation between building operation efficiency and thermal comfort, and that there is not a significant difference in thermal comfort across the three energy use modes. The findings of this study may help in identifying building operation strategies that reduce energy consumption while remaining thermally comfortable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationComputing in Civil Engineering 2017
Subtitle of host publicationInformation Modeling and Data Analytics - Selected Papers from the ASCE International Workshop on Computing in Civil Engineering 2017
EditorsKen-Yu Lin, Ken-Yu Lin, Nora El-Gohary, Nora El-Gohary, Pingbo Tang, Pingbo Tang
PublisherAmerican Society of Civil Engineers
Number of pages9
ISBN (Electronic)9780784480823, 9780784480847
ISBN (Print)9780784480823
StatePublished - 2017
Event2017 ASCE International Workshop on Computing in Civil Engineering, IWCCE 2017 - Seattle, United States
Duration: Jun 25 2017Jun 27 2017

Publication series

NameCongress on Computing in Civil Engineering, Proceedings


Other2017 ASCE International Workshop on Computing in Civil Engineering, IWCCE 2017
Country/TerritoryUnited States

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Computer Science Applications


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