2021 Evaluation and Design of Thermal Environment

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Academic unit or major
Graduate major in Architecture and Building Engineering
Asawa Takashi 
Class Format
Media-enhanced courses
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Course description and aims

Many of regions in our country have hot summer, cold winter and confortable mid-seasons, so that it is important to evaluate building thermal environment with site-specific climate conditions and to apply the results to the architectural design process. Firstly, this course explains necessary points for the evaluation of building thermal performance and thermal environments taking into account site-specific climate conditions.. Secondly, this course details building heat transfer, thermal environment simulation, thermal comfort, passive system, architectural greening and thermal environment design.

Student learning outcomes

By the end of this course, students will be able to:
1) Understand thermal performance and heat transfer of buildings, which create thermal environment in the built space, and the effects of site-specific climate conditions.
2) Acquire evaluation methods for building thermal environment using numerical simulations.
3) Learn human thermal comfort and understand design methods for creating comfortable thermal environment with architectural greening and passive systems.


Thermal environment, Passive system, Built environment, Heat transfer, Simulation, Greening, Thermal comfort

Competencies that will be developed

Specialist skills Intercultural skills Communication skills Critical thinking skills Practical and/or problem-solving skills

Class flow

The course proceed with handouts for each lecture. In the latter part of the forth lecture, students are given exercise problems related to the lectures. At the end of the lectures, students are given a report assignment related to the lectures.

Course schedule/Required learning

  Course schedule Required learning
Class 1 Social aspects of building environment, Energy saving Understand social aspects of building environment and recent progress for energy saving in Japan
Class 2 Heat transfer and thermal comfort in buildings Understand 1) building heat transfer with conduction, convection and radiation, and 2) thermal comfort of occupants in buildings
Class 3 Passive system (Building envelope and window system) Building thermal environment simulation Understand thermal performances of building envelope and window system as passive systems
Class 4 Passive system (Natural ventilation and cross ventilation) Understand characteristics of natural ventilation and cross ventilation of buildings as passive systems
Class 5 Building thermal simulation Acquire the fundamental of building thermal environment simulation with the heat transfer equations Midterm exam for the first half
Class 6 Climatic and site-specific conditions of buildings Architectural greening and its effect Understand how to decipher climatic and site-specific conditions of buildings for passive design
Class 7 Architectural greening and its effect on the environment Understand fundamental of architectural greening and its effect on the thermal environment of building and outdoor spaces
Class 8 Design of thermal environment Understand how to design comfortable thermal environment

Out-of-Class Study Time (Preparation and Review)

To enhance effective learning, students are encouraged to spend approximately 100 minutes preparing for class and another 100 minutes reviewing class content afterwards (including assignments) for each class.
They should do so by referring to textbooks and other course material.


Not in particular

Reference books, course materials, etc.

Not in particular

Assessment criteria and methods

Students' knowledge of thermal environment, building heat transfer, thermal environment simulation, thermal comfort, passive system, architectural greening and thermal environent design will be assessed.
Participation and contribution to the class 40%, Midterm exam 20%, final report 40%.

Related courses

  • UDE.E404 : Basic Engineering on Thermal Environment
  • UDE.E505 : Applied Engineering on Thermal Environment

Prerequisites (i.e., required knowledge, skills, courses, etc.)

Not in particular

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