A Bayesian Dynamic Method
A Bayesian Dynamic Method to Estimate the Thermophysical Properties of Building Elements in All Seasons, Orientations and with Reduced Error
Open access article ‘A Bayesian Dynamic Method to Estimate the Thermophysical Properties of Building Elements in All Seasons, Orientations and with Reduced Error’ written by Virginia Gori, Phillip Biddulph and Clifford A. Elwell, RCUK Centre for Energy Epidemiology (CEE).
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Received: 1 February 2018 / Accepted: 22 March 2018 / Published: 30 March 2018
Energies 2018, 11(4), 802; doi:10.3390/en11040802
The performance gap between the expected and actual energy performance of buildings and elements has stimulated interest in in-situ measurements. Most research has employed quasi-static analysis methods that estimate heat loss metrics such as U-values, without taking advantage of the rich time series data that is often recorded. This paper presents a dynamic Bayesian-based method to estimate the thermophysical properties of building elements from in-situ measurements. The analysis includes Markov chain Monte Carlo (MCMC) estimation, priors, uncertainty analysis, and model comparison to select the most appropriate model. Data from two case study dwellings is used to illustrate model performance; U-value estimates from the dynamic and static methods are within error estimates, with the dynamic model generally requiring much shorter time series than the static model. The dynamic model produced robust results at all times of year, including when the average indoor-to-outdoor temperature difference was low, when external temperatures had large daily variation, and measurements were subjected to direct solar radiation. Further, the probability distributions of parameters may provide insights into the thermal performance of elements. Dynamic methods such as that presented herein may enable wider characterisation of the performance of building elements as built, supporting work to reduce the performance gap.