In practice a number of calculation tools are used to calculate annual energy flows in buildings. Their use yields accurate results but requires the input of a large number of parameters in the complex calculation procedures involved. The values of these parameters are usually known only after the planning process of a building has been completed. A simplified evaluation method for energy efficiency in single-family houses has been developed with the aim of using as few building parameters as possible with the simplest calculation procedures possible. The calculation model was created on the basis of results obtained in a research study conducted on a large statistical sample of Slovenian single-family houses. The correlation analysis carried out showed that the heat balance energy flow values calculated are closely related to certain building quality parameters. The energy balance complexity makes normal quantity parameters less related to energy flows, and they cannot be used in simplified evaluation models. The new evaluation method can be used in two modes by applying different quality parameters, depending on their availability. If more complex input parameters are used, the results of the method are more accurate, and so it can also be used for a preliminary assessment of individual projects.
The paper presents a relatively simple and computationally less demanding technique for the modelling and analysis of regular unreinforced masonry (URM) structures. This technique is based on the equivalent frame approach, and incorporates linear beam elements and the plastic hinge concept. The complex seismic failure mechanism of masonry piers is expressed by a single failure mode interaction surface (an "FMI surface"), taking into account the influence of variation in the pier’s vertical loading, and its bending moment distribution. The effect of the governing mechanical and geometrical parameters which determine the shape of the FMI surface is presented and discussed. For modelling purposes, the ultimate lateral strength of a masonry element is expressed as a section which cuts through the FMI surface. A single failure mode interaction plastic hinge (an "FMI hinge") for each masonry frame element is introduced by combining specific failure modes, taking into account their minimum envelope. Calculations were carried out using the commercially available computer program SAP2000 Ultimate, and the validity of the proposed modelling procedure was confirmed by means of a comparative analysis of an URM wall assemblage which has already been studied by other researchers, using different modelling techniques and analysis software. The effect of the vertical loading acting on piers was studied, as well as the formation of typical failure mechanisms throughout the structure. The final part of the paper broadens the research to a fictitious 3D URM structure, where the out-of-plane behaviour of piers has been considered alongside the standard in-plane failure mechanisms. Results obtained using the incremental N2 method were compared, for a range of ground-motion intensities, with selected results obtained using incremental nonlinear dynamic analysis.
The paper presents applied study of model-based competency management framework for the evaluation of competencies of AEC building tenders. We explore competencies in the design process for physical worlds by examining design input, process, and outcome. The study is based on three real-life tendering projects of high-rise buildings in central Europe.
This study provides an interdisciplinary account determining how children and adolescents understand urban and architectural aspects of sustainable development. The concept of sustainability implies complex relations between ethical, economical, social, technical and other qualities of our environment. The concept is difficult to understand for children who lack the abilities of abstract reasoning and multiŽdimensional thinking. A new measure of sustainability understanding was formed based on pictorial rather than textual format and was applied to a large sample of over 2000 participants aged 6-19 years. The results indicated that girls had higher levels of appreciation toward sustainability issues than boys. The results also showed that understanding of sustainability issues increased progressively with age, particularly with adolescents from urban environments. The findings are discussed in terms of cognitive changes in adolescence and their implications for educational policy.
The paper deals with the effects and costs of implementing a base isolation system for the mitigation of the seismic risk of a steel rack structure. Different realistic distributions of the payload mass and occupancy levels, which form different plan asymmetric variants, have been analysed. The results obtained by the pushover analysis are presented as top floor envelopes and as plastic hinge damage patterns. In the presented cost study, the cost of the implementation of the proposed base isolation system is compared with the estimated costs of structural repairs to the damaged structural members of the superstructure, as well as with estimated expenses of the downtime period. The results have shown that base isolation is, in general, not economically feasible for lower ground motion intensities, whereas it could be of great benefit in the case of moderate and high intensities, especially if the downtime period is taken into account.