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Lightweight vs. heavyweight construction and their implication to energy efficiency in non-domestic buildings - Essay Example

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Lightweight vs. heavyweight construction and their implication to energy efficiency in non-domestic buildings

Since the effectiveness of the above strategies is related to the thermal mass of the building, the selection of the construction type is crucial. Considering that each type of construction has advantages and disadvantages in terms of energy efficiency, it is difficult to indicate which type of construction is likely to be more effective. Nevertheless, energy efficiency may be achievable when the advantages of both types of construction are exploited.
It is well known that, almost half of the delivered energy is being used by buildings (Bellew, 2000). Energy is consumed in buildings for space and water heating, lighting, ventilation, air conditioning systems and general electrical services (Nicholls, 2002). In order to meet the above description, which is necessary both for survival and adequate levels of comfort it is important to consider the type of construction that consumes energy efficiently. In addition to this, the aim of this paper is to assess the methods used in each type of construction - lightweight or heavyweight- in order to provide efficient energy performance in conjunction with comfort in buildings.
Energy efficient buildings are characterised by maximum utilization of natural means that result in minimised energy demand for heating, ventilation, cooling and lighting (Goulding & Lewis, 1994). According to this, methods such as natural ventilation, passive cooling, day lighting and effective use of external (solar) and internal heat gains are the main natural means that define energy efficient buildings. It is also important mentioning that, energy efficiency is specified by the effective use of natural means on the fabric of the building. As such, natural means present different performance when reacting with different fabrics. Nonetheless, energy efficiency of buildings is achievable when a well-managed combination of ...Show more


Space and water heating, cooling, ventilation and lighting are the main energy consumers in buildings. Having in mind that buildings have a significant impact towards the environment, the need to assess…
Author : sporergeoffrey
Lightweight vs. heavyweight construction and their implication to energy efficiency in non-domestic buildings essay example
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