Building Simulation: An International Journal

Article Title

Outdoor ventilation performance of various configurations of a layout of two adjacent buildings under isothermal conditions


outdoor air ventilation, computational fluid dynamics, appropriate spacing distance, height ratio, wind direction, two-building layout


This paper explores the pedestrian-level wind environment around two buildings of unequal heights for the effects of ratio of height of upwind building to that of downwind building, referred to as buildings height ratio, spacing distance between the buildings, and direction of ambient wind, on the outdoor air ventilation. The objective is to propose appropriate spacing distances for various configurations of this type of buildings layout in a suburban area of Kuala Lumpur, which would enable harnessing the full ventilation potential of the local wind conditions. A three-dimensional numerical technique employing computational fluid dynamics simulation of continuity and Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes equations was used to study the turbulent flow field around the full-scale sizes of the buildings. Results indicate the influence of spacing distance between buildings, relative heights of the buildings and direction of ambient wind on outdoor ventilation. Results also show that 3-D turbulent flow processes such as lateral and secondary flows play significant roles in defining the wind flow pattern and ventilation availability. The perpendicular wind direction presents remarkable adverse effects compared to the inclined direction, while a higher upwind building height which would ordinarily be expected to proportionally obstruct wind flow could be of advantage, at low values of building height ratios, in enhancing outdoor ventilation. The findings established the need to give consideration to climatic factors such as wind flow and direction in planning urban cities, as it affects buildings to be situated in close proximity, especially when there is height difference.


Tsinghua University Press