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Effects of Roof Pitch on Air Flow and Heating Load of Sealed and Vented Attics for Gable-Roof Residential Buildings

Author

Listed:
  • Shimin Wang

    () (The Durham School of Architectural Engineering and Construction, University of Nebraska—Lincoln, 113 NH, Lincoln, NE 68588-0500, USA)

  • Zhigang Shen

    () (The Durham School of Architectural Engineering and Construction, University of Nebraska—Lincoln, 113 NH, Lincoln, NE 68588-0500, USA)

Abstract

Pitch value is an important consideration in residential gable roof design and construction. However, how roof pitch, coupled with air flows in attic space, affects the energy performance of building attics has been barely investigated. In this paper, a 2D unsteady computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model is employed to investigate the effects of roof pitch on air flow and heating load of both sealed and vented attics for gable-roof residential buildings. The simulation results show that air flow in the sealed attics is steady and asymmetric, while that in the vented attics is a combination of an essentially symmetric base flow and a periodically oscillating flow. For both the sealed and vented attic cases, the heating load is found to increase with the roof pitch, and the heat transfer of turbulent air flow in attic space can be satisfactorily correlated by a simple relationship between appropriately defined Nusselt number and Rayleigh number.

Suggested Citation

  • Shimin Wang & Zhigang Shen, 2012. "Effects of Roof Pitch on Air Flow and Heating Load of Sealed and Vented Attics for Gable-Roof Residential Buildings," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 4(9), pages 1-23, August.
  • Handle: RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:4:y:2012:i:9:p:1999-2021:d:19794
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Chong Peng & Chu Li & Zuyu Zou & Suwan Shen & Dongqi Sun, 2015. "Improvement of Air Quality and Thermal Environment in an Old City District by Constructing Wind Passages," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 7(9), pages 1-21, September.
    2. Chong Peng & Tingzhen Ming & Jianquan Cheng & Yongjia Wu & Zhong-Ren Peng, 2015. "Modeling Thermal Comfort and Optimizing Local Renewal Strategies—A Case Study of Dazhimen Neighborhood in Wuhan City," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 7(3), pages 1-20, March.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    attic; roof pitch; air flow; heating load; turbulence; CFD;

    JEL classification:

    • Q - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics
    • Q0 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - General
    • Q2 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q3 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation
    • Q5 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics
    • Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
    • O13 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products

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