Building Simulation: An International Journal

Article Title

Energy simulation for a high-rise building using IDA ICE: Investigations in different climates


energy performance of buildings, simulation, high-rise buildings, IDA ICE, passive house, building envelop, climate zones


In this paper a model of a high-rise building is constructed in the simulation program IDA ICE. The model is based on an IFC-model of a demonstration building constructed in Ljubljana, Slovenia, as part of an EU-project, EE-high-rise. The model’s energy performance was simulated for four cities: Umeå (Scandinavia), Ljubljana (Central Europe), Sibenik (Mediterranean) and Dubai (The Persian Gulf). Furthermore, the climate envelope of the building was modified with the aim to improve the model’s energy performance in each of the regions. The results were evaluated according to the energy requirements of passive house standard by the German Passive House Institute. The analysis suggests that the reference building model, which itself incorporates several energy efficient components, was unable to meet the German passive house standard in none of the four cities (Umeå, Ljubljana, Sibenik and Dubai) studied. By providing a combination of energy saving measures, such as modifications of thermal resistance of building envelope, the building may be able to meet the passive house standard in Ljubljana. The analysis concludes that the reduction in window area results in reduction of both heating and cooling demand. Increase in the thickness of the insulation and the thermal resistance of windows reduces the space heating demand for Umeå, Ljubljana and Sibenik (not applied for Dubai) while increasing the cooling demand for these cities. Increased airtightness has marginal effect on heating and cooling demand for all investigated cities. Reduced thermal resistance of windows will decrease cooling demand for Ljubljana, Sibenik and Dubai (not applied for Umeå). Reduced insulation thickness (not applied for Umeå) will decrease cooling demand for Ljubljana and Sibenik but not for Dubai. Reducing the insulation thickness may often result in reduced cooling demand for moderately warm countries since the average outdoor temperature could be lower than the indoor temperature during part of the cooling season. In those situations a reduced insulation thickness can cause heat flow from the relatively hot inside to the colder outside. However, for hot climates like in Dubai where outdoor temperature is higher than the indoor temperature for most of the year, reducing the insulation thickness will increase the cooling demand. This result suggests that the insulation thickness must be chosen and optimized based on heating and cooling demand, internal heat gain, and outdoor climate


Tsinghua University Press