Fenestration Performance Analysis Using an Interactive Graphics-Based Methodology on a Microcomputer
We show the development and implementation of a new methodology that can be used to evaluate the energy and comfort performance of fenestration in non-residential buildings. The methodology is based on the definition of a fenestration system "figure of merit". The "figure of merit" is determined by considering five non-dimensional performance indices representing heating energy, cooling energy, cooling energy peak, thermal comfort, and visual comfort. These indices were derived by performing a regression analysis of several thousand hour-by-hour building heat transfer simulations of a prototypical office building module using the DOE-2 simulation program.
The regression analysis resulted in a series of simplified algebraic expressions that related fenestration configuration variables to performance parameters. We implemented these equations in a "hypermedia" environment — one that integrates graphics, sound, animation, and calculation sequences — and created a prototype fenestration performance design tool. Inputs required by the program consist of geographic location, building type, perimeter space, and envelope definition. Outputs are the calculated performance indices for electricity and fuel use, peak electric load, and thermal and visual comfort.