Accuracy of a Simple Method of Estimating the Minimum Temperature of a Sealed Roof Pond

Publication Type

Conference Proceedings

Date Published



Detailed heat flux and temperature measurements have been made in two residential scale roof pond buildings in San Antonio, Texas from July to November 1981. The minimum temprature of the 4 in deep roof pond sealed in PVC bags was approximately equal to the minimum ambient dry bulb temperature. The sensitivity of this equality to changes in meteorological conditions, maximum pond temperature and thermal load is evaluated using the measurements. Verified simulations are then used to evaluate the sensitivity of this equality to changes in the thermal load, and to changes in the depth, surface emittance and surface thermal resistance of the sealed pond in various climates. For the range of roof pond design options of interest in passive cooling of buildings, the minimum pond temperature was found to be within 2 F of the minimum ambient temperature in all climates considered. The equality of these minimum temperatures is advocated as a useful rule of thumb for feasibility assessment and as part of a simplified design methodology. The simulated minimum pond temperature was found to be surprisingly insensitive to a 50% decrease in the fraction of pond area exposed to the sky.

Conference Name

Annual Meeting of American Section of the International Solar Energy Society



Year of Publication




Conference Location

Houston, TX
Research Areas