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Vancouver

Metrics for quantifying thermal comfort and energy consumption focus on the role of mechanical systems, not architecture. This research proposes a new metric, "Thermal Autonomy," that links occupant comfort to climate, building fabric, and building operation. ThermalAutonomy measures how much of the available ambient energy resources a building can harness rather than how much fuel heating and cooling systems will consume. The change in mental framework can inform a change in process. This paper illustrates how Thermal Autonomy analysis gives rich visual feedback as to the diurnal and seasonal patterns of thermal comfort that an architectural proposition is expected to deliver. Thermal Autonomy has far-reaching utility as a comparative metric for envelope design, identifying mechanical strategies, and mixed-mode operation decisions. Foremost, it is a generative metric to quantify ways that the building filters the ambient environment. The use of Thermal Autonomy is illustrated through parametric building thermal simulation and analysis.

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"Thermal Autonomy as Metric and Design Process" in Proceedings from Pushing the Boundaries: Net positive Buildings, SB13 Vancouver, 2013

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bulletSequence showing gradation from Low Performance to High Performance to Thermal Autonomy, a method of describing building performance without active HVAC systems.
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