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Why do we need to understand the impact of air on buildings?

Air continually bathes our buildings interior and exterior often


moving, creating pressure variations across the building enclosure. resulting in heat losses (both sensible and latent) and in turn increase the buildings energy requirements to maintain comfort conditions. vapour, and as a result, the potential for condensation and water damage to the envelope components increases. and in turn potentially reduces the level of human comfort

These pressure variations cause air leakage through the enclosure,

Air movement through the enclosure results in the transport of water

Impact of Air on Buildings


Air movement
Air movement only occurs when there is a driving force present, usually the result of a dierence in air pressure from one region to another.

The moving air introduces draughts within the interior of the building Control of air movement oers potential for natural ventilation.

Air movement
Air movement only occurs when there is a driving force present, usually the result of a dierence in air pressure from one region to another.

high pressure

air movement

low pressure

high pressure

low pressure

For building assemblies, we are usually concerned with a pressure dierence across the enclosure.

Air pressure dierences


Pressure dierences across the building enclosure arise as a result of three dierent mechanisms

1. Static Air Characteristics


The study of static air its properties and its impact on solid objects

2. Dynamic Air Characteristics (aerodynamics)


The study of the properties of air in motion, or its dynamic properties the characteristics of moving air, and especially of the interaction between the air and solid stationary objects also the interaction of solid objects moving through still air

3. Mechanical Systems
The mechanical or HVAC system is able to articially impose pressure dierences within our buildings, in order to: provide ventilation air to maintain acceptable air quality for the occupants, provide combustion air for any equipment which consumes air as a part of burning fuel, provide make-up air for air exhausting equipment to control their proper operation, provide air pressure dierences between various parts of the building to control movement of airborne products, odours, etc., provide control of smoke dispersion in the event of a re.

Units of Pressure
All these mechanisms require an understanding of the concept of uid pressure. A uid exerts a pressure a force per unit area equally in all directions. The basic SI metric unit of pressure is the Pascal. Force: Newton (N) = kg.m/s2 Pressure (force /unit area): Pascal (Pa) = N/m2 = (kg.m/s2)/m2 = kg/m.s2

Units of Pressure
When quantifying the pressure of air, it is often convenient to express it as the height of another uid which it can support. Often mercury or water are used as standard reference uids. In the U-tube manometer the dierence between pressures P1 and P2 is the pressure required to support height h of the uid: P1 P2 = P = g h where: = density of the uid (kg/m2) g = gravitational constant (9.8 m/sec2) h = height dierence of the uid (m)

P1

P2

Units of Pressure
1 standard atmosphere of air pressure is slightly over 100 kPa, which is the pressure which will support about 10 metres of water. Therefore: 100 kPa will support about . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 m of water 10 kPa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 m of water 1 kPa or 1,000 Pa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100 mm of water 100 Pa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 mm of water 10 Pa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 mm of water 1 Pa . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 0.1 mm of water

Static Properties of Air


One of the characteristics of uids (liquids or gasses), which distinguish them from solids, is that their shape and volume change signicantly as a result of the forces or pressures which are applied to them.

Fluid subject to a gravitational eld


Another characteristic of uids is that when they are subject to a gravitational eld, a variation in pressure develops which decreases as you rise in the uid. We are familiar with this in aircraft, where pressurization is required at higher altitudes in the atmosphere to maintain adequate pressure for breathing

Buoyancy
When an object is completely immersed in a uid within a gravitational eld, it experiences an upward force referred to as buoyancy. This is due to the fact that there is a greater pressure on the lower surface than on the upper surface of the object due to the increased pressure as you descend in the uid. If this buoyancy force exceeds the objects weight, it will rise.

A similar eect occurs for scuba divers, where the pressure rises dramatically during an underwater descent

less dense than the uid

same density as the uid

more dense than the uid

Stack or chimney eect

Stack or chimney eect


In buildings, the stack or chimney eect is a result of the fact that there is often a dierence in density between the air inside and outside the building, resulting in a dierence in buoyancy forces.

The dierence in densities of the air is a result of two factors: 1) temperature dierences, with warmer air being less dense than cold air, 2) dierences in height of the uid from a given datum, as a result of the static pressure variation within the uid caused by the gravitational eld, with density decreasing as elevation increases.

Dierence in air densities

Dierence in air densities


Density of Dry Air as a Function of Temperature (at Sea Level)
1.60 1.55 1.50 1.45 1.40
Density (kg/m3)

1.35 1.30 1.25 1.20 1.15 1.10 1.05 1.00 -50 -45 -40 -35 -30 -25 -20 -15 -10 -5 0 5

at room temperature, air density is about 1.2 kg/m3

10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60 65 70

Temperature (C)

Fluid pressure
Because of gravitational forces, at any point in a static uid, the pressure is given by: P=gh where: P = static pressure (Pa) h = height of uid exerting a pressure = mass density (kg/m3) g = gravitational constant (9.8 m/s2) The negative sign indicates that the pressure increases as one moves down in the uid. The denser the uid the higher the value of the more rapidly the pressure changes.

Example: Fluid pressures


If atmospheric pressure at sea level is 101.325 kPa, what is the pressure at 10m below sea level and 10m above sea level? density of water = 1,000 kg/m3 density of air = 1.18 kg/m3
10m

P+10

P0
10m

P10

Example: Fluid pressures


If atmospheric pressure at sea level is 101.325 kPa, what is the pressure at 10m below sea level and 10m above sea level? density of water = 1,000 kg/m3 density of air = 1.18 kg/m3
10m

Example: Fluid pressures


P+10
If atmospheric pressure at sea level is 101.325 kPa, what is the pressure at 10m below sea level and 10m above sea level? density of water = 1,000 kg/m3 density of air = 1.18 kg/m3
10m

P+10

At 10m above sea level: P+10 = P0 gh = 101,325 Pa (1.18 kg/m3) (9.81 m/s2) (+10 m) = 101,325 Pa 116 Pa = 101,209 Pa = 101.21 kPa

P0
10m

At 10m below sea level: P10 = P0 gh = 101,325 Pa (1,000 kg/m3) (9.81 m/s2) (10 m) = 101,325 Pa + 98,100 Pa = 199,425 Pa = 199.43 kPa

P0
10m

P10

P10

Example: Fluid pressures


P+10

Example: Fluid pressure in container


If a cylinder with a closed end is pushed 3 metres below the water level with closed end down, what is the pressure exerted on the bottom of the cylinder if the atmospheric pressure at sea level is 101.325 kPa? density of sea water = 1,000 kg/m3 density of air = 1.18 kg/m3

101.21 kPa P = 0.12 kPa 101.325 kPa P = + 98.1 kPa 199.43 kPa
10m

P0
3m

10m

P0 Pa Pw P10

Example: Fluid pressure in container


If a cylinder with a closed end is pushed 3 metres below the water level with closed end down, what is the pressure exerted on the bottom of the cylinder if the atmospheric pressure at sea level is 101.325 kPa? density of sea water = 1,000 density of air = 1.18 kg/m3 kg/m3

Example: Fluid pressure in container


and the pressure of the water outside the cylinder is: Pw = P0 gh = 101,325 Pa (1,000 kg/m3)(9.81 m/s2)(3 m) = 130,755 Pa = 130.76 kPa The pressure dierence acting on the bottom of the cylinder is: P = Pw Pa = 130.755 kPa 101.360 kPa = 29.40 kPa (inwards)

P0
3m

P0
3m

At 3m below the sea level, the pressure of the air in the cylinder is: Pa = P0 gh = 101,325 Pa (1.18 kg/m3)(9.81 m/s2)(3 m) = 101,360 Pa = 101.36 kPa

Pa Pw

Pa Pw

Example: Fluid pressure in container

Example: Fluid pressure in container


If the same cylinder is pushed 3m below the water level with the closed end up, what is the air pressure within the cylinder if the atmospheric pressure at sea level is 101.325 kPa?

101.325 kPa

P0
3m

density of sea water = 1,000 kg/m3 density of air = 1.18 kg/m3

Pa, top

P0

3m

P = 29.40 kPa

101.36 kPa 130.76 kPa

Pa Pw

Pa, bottom Pw

Example: Fluid pressure in container


If the same cylinder is pushed 3m below the water level with the closed end up, what is the air pressure within the cylinder if the atmospheric pressure at sea level is 101.325 kPa? density of sea water = 1,000 kg/m3 density of air = 1.18 kg/m3 At 3m below the sea level, the pressure of the water is the same as before: Pw = P0 gh = 101,325 Pa (1,000 kg/m3)(9.81 m/s2)(3 m) = 130,755 Pa = 130.76 kPa

Example: Fluid pressure in container


This will be the same as the air pressure just above the water surface in the cylinder. Near the top of the cylinder, the air pressure will be reduced by the inuence of the uid height: P0 Pa, top = Pa, bottom gh = 130,755 Pa (1.18 kg/m3)(9.81 m/s2)(+3 m) = 130,720 Pa = 130.72 kPa The pressure dierence acting on the top of the cylinder is: P = P0 Pa, top = 101.33 kPa 130.72 kPa = 29.39 kPa (outwards)

Pa, top

P0

Pa, top

3m

3m

Pa, bottom Pw

Pa, bottom Pw

Example: Fluid pressure in container

Example: Fluid pressure in container


If the same cylinder is pulled 3m above water level with the closed end up, what is the air pressure within the cylinder if the atmospheric pressure at sea level is 101.325 kPa? density of sea water = 1,000 kg/m3 density of air = 1.18 kg/m3
3m

P = 29.39 kPa

101.33 kPa 130.72 kPa

Pa, top

P0

Pa, top Pw, top


3m

130.76 kPa 130.76 kPa

Pa, bottom Pw

At 3m above the sea level, the pressure of the air is: Pw = P0 gh = 101,325 Pa (1.18 kg/m3)(9.81 m/s2)(+3 m) = 101,290 Pa = 101.29 kPa

P0

Pw, bottom

Example: Fluid pressure in container


The pressure of the water at the bottom of the cylinder is equal to P0 (sea level air pressure). The pressure of the water inside at the top of the cylinder is: Pw = P0 gh = 101,325 Pa (1,000 kg/m3) (9.81 m/s2) (+3 m) = 71,895 Pa = 71.90 kPa The dierence in pressure across the top of the cylinder is: 101.29 kPa 71.90 kPa = 29.39 kPa

Example: Fluid pressure in container

Pa, top Pw, top


3m

P = 29.39 kPa

101.29 kPa 71.90 kPa

Pa, top Pw, top


3m

P0

Pw, bottom

101.33 kPa

P0

Pw, bottom

Example: Air pressure in balloon


An analogous situation to that of the previous example can be is found in the case of a hot air balloon, though the dierence in density is due to temperature dierences of air rather than diering uids.
15 m

Example: Air pressure in balloon


20 m above the opening inside the balloon the air pressure is: Pint = P0 intgh = 101,325 Pa (1.13 kg/m3)(9.81 m/s2)(20 m) = 101,103 Pa Similarly, 20 m above the opening outside the balloon the air pressure is:
20 m 15 m

Assuming a balloon diameter of 15m, what is the buoyancy (lift) if the air within the balloon is heated to 30C above the outside temperature of 10C? Assume an atmospheric pressure of 101.325 kPa. From the table, air density is: at 10C . . . . . . 1.25 kg/m3 at 40C . . . . . . 1.13 kg/m3

= 101,325 Pa (1.25 kg/m3)(9.81 m/s2)(20 m) = 101,080 Pa

The dierence is therefore 23 Pa.

20 m

Pext = P0 extgh

Example: Air pressure in balloon


Buoyancy force = pressure x area = (23 Pa) (7.5m)2 = 4,064 N

Stack eect
The stack eect is the result of the buoyancy caused by the dierence in densities between interior and exterior air. The pressure dierence across the building enclosure at a distance h from the neutral plane is: p = o g h i g h = g h (o i ) where: p = pressure dierence across enclosure o = outside density (kg/m3) i = inside density (kg/m3) h = distance from neutral plane (m) g = gravitational constant (9.81 m/s2) h
neutral plane

Since F=ma this force would support a mass of: m = (4,064 N)/(9.8 m/s2) = 415 kg

15 m

20 m

Stack eect
To avoid the need to calculate air densities at the dierent temperatures, this equation can be reduced by incorporating Boyles law equation, rearranged for density:

Stack eect
hpt 1 1 1 1 T ps = g = 0.0342hpt = 0.0342hpt Ra To Ti To Ti TiTo

PV = w R T

o =

pt RaTo

i =

pt RaTi

where: pt = barometric pressure (Pa) Ra = gas constant for air = 287.1 J/kg To and Ti = outside and inside temperatures (K) substituting into: ps = g h (o i )

T ps = 0.0342hpt T T i o

hpt 1 1 1 1 T ps = g = 0.0342hpt = 0.0342hpt R T T T T T T a o o i o i i

This represents the pressure dierence across any point on a building enclosure at a vertical distance h from the neutral plane, given interior and exterior temperatures. Note that the temperatures must be in absolute (Kelvin) degrees.

Example: Stack eect


A 100 m high building has an average interior air temperature of 22C and the exterior temperature is 20C.
1.60 1.55 1.50 1.45 1.40
Density (kg/m3)

Density of Dry Air as a Function of Temperature (at Sea Level)

1.38 kg/m3 @ -20C

1.35 1.30 1.25 1.20 1.15 1.10

1.18 kg/m3 @ 22C

1.05 1.00 -50 -45 -40 -35 -30 -25 -20 -15 -10 -5 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 40 45 50 55 60 65 70 Temperature (C)

Example: Stack eect


A 100m high building has an average interior air temperature of 22C and the exterior temperature is 20C. density of 22C air = 1.18 kg/m3 density of 20C air = 1.38 kg/m3 How does the pressure dierential between exterior and interior across the enclosure vary with height a) if openings are only near the bottom of the building? i o

Example: Stack eect


Since openings are only at the bottom of the building, assume the neutral plane is at ground level, then the pressure dierence across the building enclosure at any height is: ps = g h (o i ) = (9.81 m/s2) h (1.38 1.18 kg/m3) = (1.96 kg/s2 m2) h i Therefore, at 100 m height (top of building): p = (1.96 kg/s2 m2) 100 m = 196 Pa h
neutral plane

Example: Stack eect


Alternate method using temperatures directly:
T ps = 0.0342hpt TiTo

Example: Stack eect


A 100 m high building has an average interior air temperature of 22C and the exterior temperature is 20C. density of 22C air = 1.18 kg/m3 density of 20C air = 1.38 kg/m3 How does the pressure dierential between exterior and interior across the enclosure vary with height b) if openings are evenly distributed throughout the height of the building? i o

Ti and To must be in absolute degrees (K): 22C = 295K and 20C = 253K Therefore:
42C ps = 0.0342(100m )(101.32kPa ) (295K )(253K )

i h
neutral plane

= 196 Pa

Example: Stack eect


Assume the neutral plane is at mid-height where the pressure dierence must be zero, increasing in both directions from that plane. At top of the building (+50 m from neutral plane): p = (9.81 m/s2)(+50 m)(1.38 1.18 kg/m3) = + 98 Pa h
neutral plane

Example: Stack eect


Alternate method:

42C ps = 0.0342(50m )(101.32Pa ) (295K )(253K ) = 98 Pa


(positive or negative depending on direction from neutral axis)
neutral plane

Similarly, at ground level: p = 98 Pa

Stack eect

Stack eect

Air pressures inside and outside a heated building with a single opening at the bottom and no internal partitions

Air pressures inside and outside a heated building with equal openings at top and bottom and no internal partitions

Stack eect

Stack eect

Air pressures inside and outside a heated building with each storey being completely isolated and having equal openings top and bottom

Air pressures inside and outside a heated building with uniform distribution of openings through the enclosure, the oors and the walls of the elevator shaft

The text and images used in this presentation have been obtained from a number of di erent sources. This information has been assembled speci cally for the delivery of the course CIVL 478 Building Science & the Building Enclosure, and forms an integral part of the course material which is required for examination. The presentation is intended for educational purposes only, to be used solely by students enrolled in the course. It is not to be distributed electronically or in hard copy format to any other party. Greg Johnson