Computational analysis of natural ventilation flows in geodesic dome building in hot climates

Zohreh Soleimani, John Kaiser Calautit, Ben Richard Hughes

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

For centuries, dome roofs were used in traditional houses in hot regions such as the Middle East and Mediterranean basin due to its thermal advantages, structural benefits and availability of construction materials. This article presents the computational modelling of the wind- and buoyancy-induced ventilation in a geodesic dome building in a hot climate. The airflow and temperature distributions and ventilation flow rates were predicted using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD). The three-dimensional Reynolds-Averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) equations were solved using the CFD tool ANSYS FLUENT15. The standard k-epsilon was used as turbulence model. The modelling was verified using grid sensitivity and flux balance analysis. In order to validate the modelling method used in the current study, additional simulation of a similar domed-roof building was conducted for comparison. For wind-induced ventilation, the dome building was modelled with upper roof vents. For buoyancy-induced ventilation, the geometry was modelled with roof vents and also with two windows open in the lower level. The results showed that using the upper roof openings as a natural ventilation strategy during winter periods is advantageous and could reduce the indoor temperature and also introduce fresh air. The results also revealed that natural ventilation using roof vents cannot satisfy thermal requirements during hot summer periods and complementary cooling solutions should be considered. The analysis showed that buoyancy-induced ventilation model can still generate air movement inside the building during periods with no or very low wind.

Original languageEnglish
Article number31
Pages (from-to)1-22
Number of pages22
JournalComputation
Volume4
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 17 Aug 2016

Keywords

  • airflow
  • buoyancy flow
  • computational fluid dynamics (CFD)
  • indoor
  • thermal modelling

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