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Title: Thermal performance of dwellings in Cyprus and approaches for energy conservation
Author: Panayiotou, Gregoris
ISNI:       0000 0004 5351 3117
Awarding Body: Brunel University
Current Institution: Brunel University
Date of Award: 2014
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Energy has always been the dominant driving force for the socio-economic development of mankind. Nowadays, the global energy system is highly depended on fossil fuels. A great share of the final energy consumption, over 40%, in the EU-27 is consumed by the existing building stock whereas dwellings account for 66.62% of this. Thus, the need to increase the energy performance of dwellings is an important instrument in the efforts to lessen Europe’s energy dependency. In order to define measures to increase the energy performance of dwellings a deeper understanding of their characteristics should be gained. Unfortunately, in Cyprus there is a gap in knowledge on this aspect. In this thesis the characteristics of the dwellings in Cyprus are defined through a sample of 500 dwellings. The results revealed that more than 80% of dwellings in Cyprus do not have thermal insulation installed on their envelope. From this it is clear that the definition of the optimum thermal insulation material to be applied in dwellings is very important. Thus, the commercially available thermal insulation materials and topologies used in Cyprus were reviewed and defined through a market survey and the typical dwelling was modelled. The effect of the application of thermal insulation to its energy behaviour was simulated using TRNSYS. This resulted in the definition of the optimum thermal insulation materials and topologies to be applied in both new and existing dwellings. Accordingly, the application of advanced commercially available materials such as Phase Change Materials (PCM) to the envelope of the typical dwelling was investigated. The energy savings achieved by the addition of a PCM layer on the envelope of the typical dwelling was found to be 28.6%. The optimum PCM case was also combined with the optimum thermal insulation combination and an energy saving of 68% was predicted. The incorporation of Renewable Energy Sources (RES) to the typical dwelling was also simulated and studied. Specifically, two types of standalone RES systems were initially evaluated; a solely photovoltaic (PV) system and a hybrid PV-Wind system. The results showed that the solely PV system is a much better option due to the very high solar potential of Cyprus in comparison to the poor wind profile of the island. Subsequently, a grid-connected PV system was also evaluated and the results showed that when a RES system is grid-connected the cost of the system is reduced to half of that of the standalone cases. This research has revealed that the optimum topology combinations to be applied in both new and existing dwellings in Cyprus is thermal insulation plaster or thermal insulation bricks (only for new dwellings) on the external walls combined with expanded polystyrene on the roof. These results will provide valuable information that will assist both engineers and architects in the efficient design of dwellings in Cyprus. The investigation of the application of macroencapsulated PCM showed that these materials are not yet an economically viable solution for application in Cyprus The findings also show that a solely PV system is the optimum RES system to be applied in Cyprus especially when it is grid-connected. The findings of this project are useful for individuals, house builders and designers as well as policy makers for the design of energy saving subsidy schemes.
Supervisor: Kalogirou, S. Sponsor: Research Promotion Foundation (RPF) of Cyprus
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Energy conservation measures for dwellings ; Energy efficient dwellings ; Renewable energy sources systems in buildings ; Simulationof the thermal performance of buildings ; Phase change materials application in buildings