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Seminar: Understanding the Impact of Social Sub-Networks and Occupants' Thermal Preferences on Energy Consumption and Conservation in Buildings

Event Date: November 3, 2017
Speaker: Dr. Carol Menassa
Speaker Affiliation: University of Michigan
Time: 1:30 - 2:20 pm
Location: HAMP 2123
Contact Name: Sayanti Mukherjee
Contact Email: sayanti.purdue@gmail.com
Priority: No
School or Program: Construction Engineering and Management
College Calendar: Show
Carol Menassa--Associate Professor and John L. Tishman Faculty Scholar in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Michigan--will speak at 1:30pm Nov. 3 in Hampton Hall Room 2123.

Seminar: Understanding the Impact of Social Sub-Networks and Occupants' Thermal Preferences on Energy Consumption and Conservation in Buildings

Carol Menassa, PhD
Associate Professor and John L. Tishman Faculty Scholar, Civil and Environmental Engineering
University of Michigan

November 3, 2017
1:30 PM
HAMP 2123

For more information:  Sayanti Mukherjee, sayanti.purdue@gmail.com

Abstract

Despite significant technological advances in energy systems, commercial buildings continue to use more than 19% of total energy produced in the United States with adverse environmental and human health effects. Occupants’ energy use behavior is often neglected as a critical factor to achieve significant energy conservation in these buildings. On the other hand, the use of energy efficient technologies and controls in these building systems (e.g., HVAC) is unlikely to meet the thermal requirements of occupants in a single or multi-occupancy space due to occupants’ diverse preferences, activities and needs. To achieve significant energy reductions and improve occupants’ health and well-being, our research investigates the occupant energy behavior challenge through data analysis and modeling.

In this presentation, I will first discuss an agent based model that is developed to simulate the complex social structures formed by independent entities with different organizational structures within a building. This model provides a realistic representation of social sub-networks in commercial buildings. It also simulates interactions between occupants resulting from interventions using the bounded confidence, relative agreement and diffusion theories from social sciences. Second, I will discuss how we are using a smartphone application framework to dynamically determine the optimum room conditioning mode (mechanical conditioning or natural ventilation) and HVAC settings (e.g., thermostat set point) in single and multi-occupancy spaces. The “personalized” control framework integrates building indoor environment data (obtained from sensors) with human physiological and behavioral data (obtained from wearable devices, polling apps, and surveys) to develop occupant comfort models under both mechanical and natural ventilation modes. The results from both of these studies indicate that focused interventions coupled with a “personalized” comfort models can lead to reduced energy use and increased occupant satisfaction with thermal comfort in buildings.


Dr. Carol C. Menassa is an Associate Professor and John L. Tishman Faculty Scholar in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Michigan (UM). She received her PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). Menassa directs the Sustainable and Intelligent Civil Infrastructure Systems Laboratory at UM. Her current research focuses on developing simulation models and algorithms to understand the interplay between occupancy characteristics and energy consumption and conservation in buildings. Her research is funded by the National Science Foundation, the Construction Industry Institute (CII) and other agencies. Menassa is the recipient of ASCE 2017 Daniel Halpin Award, the ASCE 2017 Alfred Noble Prize, the 2017 Outstanding Early Career Researcher from Fiatech, 2015 CII Distinguished Professor Award and 2014 NSF Career award. She also received 2016 Best Paper Award from International Symposium on Automation and Robotics in Construction, the 2015 Best Paper Award from Journal of Management in Engineering, the 2013 Best Paper Award from the ASCE International Conference on Computing in Civil and Building Engineer, and the Distinguished Young Alumni Award from the American University of Beirut. Menassa is an Associate Editor for the ASCE Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering and Assistant Specialty Editor for the ASCE Journal of Construction Engineering and Management.