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Modelling outdoor corridors and open air areas in openstudio

asked 2015-12-09 19:27:06 -0500

olivier's avatar


I am a new user of Openstudio. I am trying to model a building that has open air spaces and outdoor corridors. The building was initially designed for a good natural ventilation but air conditioners were installed in certain closed spaces which changed the initial intent, making the building consume a lot more energy. This building is a three storey building in Thailand.

My questions are: How do I model outdoor corridors in Openstudio? In the building I need to model, for example, the outdoor corridors are "balconies" in some instances and actual outdoor corridors (between two rooms with a roof) in other instances. My initial thought was to model the "balconies" as shading devices, each storey has a "balcony" that goes around it. If I do that is it possible to create a zone between the balconies of the adjacent floors in order to assign loads (fans & lights) without making a physical barrier and keeping the outdoor ventilation properties (if any)?

How do I model open air spaces in Openstudio? In the building I need to model, for example, the top floor is mostly opened to the surroundings with the roof acting as shading device on some areas and a roof on others. My idea was to again, model certain sections as shading devices, but again my issue is that I have to associate certain loads to the zone between the roof (shading device) and and the floor such as fans and lights. Also do I have to connect the roof (shading device) to the floor? Would lines between the roof (shading device) and the floor suffice?

Finally does Openstudio model outdoor ventilation (convective heat transfer) if I create such spaces? If not do I have to create zones in which I model it through the HVAC tab?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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answered 2015-12-09 23:40:59 -0500

PBrain's avatar

I'd recommend modelling these 'outdoor' spaces in the same way you would 'indoor' spaces. You say the top floor is mostly open to the outdoors. That's a zone with a high outdoor air exchange rate and air walls or other no mass walls. An EnergyPlus zone requires at least 6 surfaces that enclose a region of space. You need to think about the properties of those bounding surfaces to achieve your goal.

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Great thank you!

olivier's avatar olivier  ( 2015-12-10 16:46:23 -0500 )edit

@PBrain Would you use a high DesinSpecification:OutdoorAir or a high SpaceInfiltration:DesignFlowRate? From my understanding DesinSpecification:OutdoorAir is usable by other objects whereas SpaceInfiltration:DesignFlowRate is unwanted outdoor air infiltration. I would think either would be good because no other object would use this outdoor air. Is this correct? Also If both are high do they double up?

olivier's avatar olivier  ( 2016-01-22 00:06:40 -0500 )edit

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Asked: 2015-12-09 19:27:06 -0500

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Last updated: Dec 09 '15