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IACSIT International Journal of Engineering and Technology, Vol. 5, No.

6, December 2013

Sustainable Buildings with Their Sustainable

Özlem Eren and Banu Erturan

reusability. Solutions which can be repaired and used in

Abstract—The intelligent facade reduces the primary energy several ways have the highest long term potential. On the
consumption of a building, use of natural, renewable energy other hand, solutions with low energy consumption, easy to
sources, such as solar radiation, air flows and creates a clean, to operate and easy to maintain have generally low
comfortable environment for the occupants. For that reason running costs (and a feasibly low environmental impact at
ecological intelligent facade can be defined as changing light
and weather conditions using self- regulating thermal the same time). The social and cultural aspects of
protection and solar control measures. Considering that energy sustainability include comfort, wellbeing and safety of the
consumption is one of the foremost issues of our time, energy- building occupants. Human health protection, which is often
saving measures have become of vital importance. This wrongly associated with protection of the ecosystem, is in
particularly applies to buildings, since the amount of non- fact much more closely related to comfort problems (indoor
renewable energy resources they consume is considerably
air quality, etc.). The protection of cultural resources, above
higher than in other areas of consumption. The energy
consumption level of a building is contingent on that building’s all building stocksand historic urban systems, protected
specific structure as well as the thermal properties of the biotopes and man-made landscapes gives a common
building and its environment, the climatic conditions prevailing framework for architecture, city planning, regional planning
at the building’s location, the times when the building is used, and landscape architecture. Environments which have a high
and the specifications of the systems employed for heating and cultural and social quality do not become obsolete [1], [2].
cooling. A building skin design tuned to energy-efficiency
criteria allows both conservation and generation of energy. In
addition, by employing renewable energy resources for heating, II. THE DESIGNING OF INTELLIGENT FACADES
cooling, and lighting, it contributes to reduced use of depletable
energy resources, accounting for the responsibility towards the Facades are crucial to energy consumption and comfort in
global community. Energy-efficient facade design, which starts buildings. Incorporating intelligence in their design is an
with decisions at a building’s initial design stage, directly effective way to achieve low energy buildings. Three
affects a whole array of factors, including the choice of system. strategies are examined: the first is dependence on active
This study focuses on those parameters and alternatives for
systems and element performance, the second implements
energy-efficient building skin design that support the concept
of ecological building, and presents practical examples for intelligent passive design strategies only, while the third
feasible systems. In this study ecological building skins will be combines passive design strategies with early integration of
classified as single skin facades, double skin facades (Corridor active elements. Their impact on energy performance and
facades, building high double skin facades, building high visual comfort are compared. A design tool that suggests
controllable double skin facades, box windows) and combined good starting solutions is presented, which takes into
account how architects work during conceptual phases [2],
Index Terms—Intelligent facades, architecture, technology
According to Wıggıngton and Harris the study of
examples of building intelligence showed that the façade
was performing up to different functions, which influenced
I. INTRODUCTION the passage of energy from both external environments to
Sustainability is a term that has become an integral part of the internal environment, and the other way around. The
our vocabulary. By this word we understand the protection manipulating functions were idenfied as;
of the ecosystem through protection of its resources. The The enhancement of daylight (e.g. light shelves/reflectors)
economic sustainability of buildings can be divided into two 1) The maximization of daylight (e.g. full-height
parts: the investment, which in the case of buildings and glazing/atria)
buildings stocks should be considered as long term resource 2) Protection (e.g. louvres/blinds)
productivity problem, and the running costs. Instead of 3) Insulation (e.g. night-time shutters)
minimizing the investment cost through low cost highly 4) Ventilation (e.g. automatic dampers)
customized solutions, it is preferable to find for a given 5) The collection of heat (e.g. solar collectors)
investment the solution which has the highest durability and 6) The rejection of heat (e.g. overhangs/brise soleil)
7) The attenuation of sound (e.g. acoustic dampers)
Manuscript received March 16, 2013; revised July 05, 2013. 8) The generation of electricity (e.g. photovoltaics)
Ö. Eren is with the Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University, Architectural 9) The explotation of preassure differentials (e.g.
Faculty,80040, Fındıklı Istanbul,Turkey(e-mail: ozlemeren3@
B. Erturan is with Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, Merter, Istanbul, ventilation shimneys) [4]-[6].
Turkey (e-mail:
In 1981, working for Richard Rogers ans Partner, Mike

DOI: 10.7763/IJET.2013.V5.651 725

IACSIT International Journal of Engineering and Technology, Vol. 5, No. 6, December 2013

Davies already formulated the idea of polyvalent wall in his radiation is emitted into the intermadiate cavity, a natural
article titled “A wall for all seasons”. stack effect result, which causes the air to rise, taking with it
Here, several functional layers within a glass element addiitonal heat. Computer simuluation and test have shown
were to provide sun and heat protection, and to regulate the that natural air circulation can reove up to %25 of the heat
functions automatically according to current conditions [5]. resulting from solar radiaition in the cavity.Genarally, given
appropriate panes and solar control devices, g-values of
proximately 0.10 can be achieved. As the temperature of the
air increases a sit rises upwards., it is usual to restict the
Intelligent façade types are single façade, double facade height of the continous opening to two or three floors.
and combination of these systems (Table I). Technical considerations concerned with fire protection and
acoustic insulation also play a role. The reduction of wind
pressure by the adiditon of the extra pane of glass means
Perforated facades
1. SINGLE SKIN FACADES that the windows can be opened even in the uppermost
Elemental facades floors of a high rise builidngs. Natural ventilation of officies
Corridor facades by fresh air is much more acceptable to the builidng’s users
Building high double skin
an dit has the adiditonal benefits of reducing investments in
2. DOUBLE SKIN FACADES air handling systems and also reducing Energy consumption.
Building high controllable
double skin facades A double skin facade also reduces heat loses because the
Box windows reduced speed of the iar flow and the increate temperature of
Alternating facades the air in te cavity lowers rate of heat transfer on the surface
Baffle Panel Facades of the glass. This has the effect of maintaining higher
A. Single Skin Facades surface temparatures on the inside of the glass, which in turn
To achieve a certain level of solar control in a single skin means that the space closet o the window can be bettwe
façade, coating can be applied to the glass, such as infrared utilised as a result of increate thermal comfort conditions.
reflecting coatings and/or coatings to absorb and reflect Energy frm the echaust air stream using a heat exchanger
wavelengths in the visible range (Fig. 1) [1], [7], [8], [9]. (Fig. 2) [1].

Perforated Facades Elemental Facades

Fig. 1. Examples of perforated facade and an elemental facade [2], [4].

1) Perforated facades (Table II)

Perforated walls, panels and screens have been used for Fig. 2. Example of double skin facades [2], [4]
centuries as a way to control the level of light entering a
building or to offer privacy to the occupants. The functions 1) Box windows (Table IV)
of perforations have remained largely the same, but the The box window is probably the oldest form of a two
materials and methods of manufacture have altered layered façade. Box windows consist of a frame with
considerably [10], [11]. inward-opening casements. The single glazed external skin
2) Elemental facades (Table III) consists openings that allow the ingress of fresh air and the
To achieve a certain level of solar control in a single- skin egress of vitiated air, thus serving to ventilate both the
façade, coatings can be applied to the glass, such as intermediate space and the internal rooms. The cavity
infrared-reflecting coatings and/or coatings to absorb and between the two façade layers is divided horizontally along
reflects wawe lenghts in the visible range. As their the constructional axes, or on a room-for-room basis.
properties are fixed, they also restrict solar gain in the colder Vertically the divisions occur either between stories or
months and reduce dayligting levels [3]. between individual window elements. Continuous divisions
help to avoid the transmission of sounds and smells from
B. Double Skin Facades bay to bay and from room to room. Box type windows are
The term double skin facade refers to an arrangements commonly used in situations where there are high external
with a glass in front of the actual building a facade. Solar noise levels and where special requirements are made in
control devices are placed in the cavity between these two respect of the sound insulation between adjoining rooms.
skins, which protects them from the influences of weather This is also the only form of construction provides these
and air pollution, a factor of particular importance in high functions in facades with conventional rectangular openings.
rise buildings or ones situated in the vicinty of busy roads. A Each box window element requires its own air intake and
further advantages of the double facade is the solar shading extracts openings, which have to be considered when
it affords in the summer. As reradiation from absorbed solar designing the outer façade [9].

IACSIT International Journal of Engineering and Technology, Vol. 5, No. 6, December 2013

TABLE II: DESIGN CRITERIA OF PERFORATED FACADES [2], [4] the ventilation drive energy demand to be minimised.
Facade corridors can transmit unwanted odours and sounds
between rooms [4], [10], [11].



2) Corridor facades (Table V)

The corridor facade is a double-skinned facade in which
the facade cavity is separated storey by storey with
bulkheads. Air exchange in the facade cavity is eighter
vertically at a floor level, horizontally at the corners of the
building, or both vertically and horizontally. If the double
skinned facade is ventilated horizontally it is often designed
so as to be able to control the pressures in the facade cavity.
In this way the facade flaps can be opened or closed
depending on the desired pressure conditions (over-or 3) Building high double skin facades (Table VI)
underpressure), wind direction and speed. This allows Building high double skin facades the intermediate space
specific pressure conditions to be set up in the building and between the inner and outer layers is adjoined vertically and

IACSIT International Journal of Engineering and Technology, Vol. 5, No. 6, December 2013

horizontally by a number of rooms. In extreme cases, the therefore forms one large volume. Metal floors are installed
space may extend around the entre building without and at the level of each storey in order to allow access to it,
intermediate divisions. The ventilation of the intermediate essentially for reason of cleaning and maintenance. The
space occurs via large openings near the ground floor and difference between this type of façade and the building high
the roof. During the heating period, the façade space can be controllable double skin façade lies in the fact that outdoor
closed at the top and bottom to exploit the conservatory façade is composed exclusively of pivoting louvers rather
effect and optimize solar energy gains. Building high double than a traditional monolithic façade equipped (or not) with
skin facades are especially suitable where external noise openings. This outside façade is not airtight even when the
levels are very high, since the type of construction does not louvers have all been put in closed position, which justifies
necessarily requires openings distributed over its height. As its separate classification [6], [12], [13.].Building high
a rule, the rooms behind building high double skin facades controllable double skin facades are divided to horizontally
have to be mechanically ventilated, and the façade can be and vertically for ventilating and for cleaning aims.
used as joint air duct for this purpose. As with corridor TABLE VI: DESIGN CRITERIA OF BUILDING HIGH CONTROLLABLE DOUBLE
facades, attention should be paid to the problem of sound SKIN FACADES [2], [4]
tranmission within the intermediate space [7]-[9].
FACADES[2], [4]

Typical Applications
- Administration -Elemental facade High-rise buildings

-In front of perforated -Variable opening of angle with natural
buildings, residential
facades outer skin
Typical Applications

buildings in high ventilation

-In front of elemental -Many moveable parts
noise-load areas

- Building with required Higher noise-load
-Distance between skins -Panel offset 30-120 cm locations
mainly mechanical
varies to suit to required
ventilation Front curtain wall in
- İn building building refurbishment
-Outer skin can be self-
renovation, heritage
supporting Very good noise
-Panel offset 1-5 m
reduction depending
Room climate in summer

-Very good noise on the setting of the

-Wind-protected solar
Room climate

Sound insulation
reduction with natural -Wind-protected solar
in summer

screening ventilation flaps


ventilation screening

-Unwanted heat entry from

-Transmission of -Overheating of the cavity Little noise
severe overheating in the
sound from room to avoided by opening the reduction with open
facade cavity
room outer skin
-Can provide night cooling facade
-Can provide night cooling
-Reduction of natural Possible
Heating energy demand

light transmittance by transmission of sound

-U-value dynamic, depends the second glass skin from room to room
on air exchange and and construction of

insulation the outer skin Reduction of natural

Heating energy demand

-Formation of a climatic -Diffuse light -U-value dynamic, depends light transmittance in

buffer zone admitted by the on settings of the the depth of the room
-Possible use of solar gain arrangement of solar

ventilation flaps and Reduction of natural

screening on the outer insulation
-Formation of a climate light transmittance by
-View out limited buffer zone the second glass skin
-Comfortable introduction
depending on offset -Possible use of solar gain
of supply air in winter
-Increased space
and construction of the
Functional aspects

-Considerable risk of outer skin


summer heating
-Intruder protection Direct view out
-Transmission of door from
-Cavity useable if
room to room
offset large -Comfortable introduction
depending on
-Can be incorporated into
Functional aspects

-Possible of supply air in winter ventilation flap setting

the ventilation concept

condensation -Little risk of overheating Increased space

Mechanical ventilation is
formation on outside in summer
normally required
glass pane -Possible transmission of
-Considerable door from room to room Very high
-Very good noise reduction
summer overheating Less noise reduction when maintenance costs
-High construction ventilation flaps opened High cleaning

-Natural ventilation is

possible even under
-Severely limited costs”.
difficult outside conditions
view out -Variable facade settings Very high
-Homogenous appearance

-Transmission of

to the facade -No overheating in summer construction costs

sound and odour -Improvement of view out
-Can be simply retrofitted Very high
-High fire-safety possible
requirements -Can be controlled to maintenance costs
adjust to outside climate High technical costs
4) Building high controllable double skin facades (Table
VII) C. Combined Facades
The building high controllable double skin façade is very This type of facade, is a combination of single and double
similar multi-storey ventilated double façade. Indeed its skinned facades (Fig. 3)
cavity is not partitioned either horizontally or vertically and 1) Baffle panel (Table VIII)

IACSIT International Journal of Engineering and Technology, Vol. 5, No. 6, December 2013

A baffle panel is an additional panel that is fixed a short on the outside and inside climate conditions, ventilation can
distance in front of a window in a perforated or an elemental be provided through the single or double skinned facade to
facade. It is means of minimizing the disadvantages of ensure confortable conditions in the room almost any time
single skinned facades with respect to sound insulation and of year. If the surface area of single skinned facade is small
ventilation. Baffle panels also provide protection to solar it can be also fitted with internal solar screening [4], [15],
screening, allowing it to be operated in almost any wind [16].
conditions. They are simple to incorporate and offer reliable
protection against weather and intruders during night
cooling. Baffle panels restrict the user’s view out only to a
limited extent. The effective cross-section for ventilation
may be considerably reduced if the gap between the baffle
panel and the facade is too small [4], [14].


-In front of perforated - Administration
Typical Applications

facade buildings, residential Baffle Panel Alternating Facades


-In from of elemental buildings

facade - High-rise buildings Fig. 3. Examples of a baffle panel and an alternating facade [2], [4]
-Size and distance of the with natural ventilation
baffle panel depends on the - Medium wind-speed
desired function locations TABLE IX: DESIGN CRITERIA OF ALTERNATING FACADES [2], [4]
-Panel offset 5-25 cm - Higher noise-load - Administration
locations -In perforated facade
buildings, residential


-Very little sound -Cost-effective way of -Elemental facade

re transmission from room to optimizing a facade -Area proportions and
climate in

- High-rise buildings
panel offsets varied to suit

m room -Can be retrofitted with natural ventilation

m -Improved noise reduction -Simple night cooling the required function
u - High wind speeds high
s with natural ventilation -Little overheating in -Panel offset 10-30 cm
noise-load areas
summer -Wind-protected solar
-Transmission heat loss -Reduction of natural -Additional sound level
Room climate

Heating energy

in summer

reduction with natural

dynamic, depends on panel light transmittance by -Possible unwanted entry


offset and insulation second pane of heat from overheating in

-Little improvement on -Possible integration of -Very little sound
the facade cavity
single skin facades light-related functions transmission from room
-Purge ventilation at high
-Little reduction of solar into the baffle panel to room
gain -Reduction of daylight by
Heating energy demand

-Comfortable introduction -Possible limited purge depth of facade

of supply air in winter ventilation -U-value dynamic, depends
-Reduction of natural
Functional aspects

-Increased entry of heat in -Weather protection on propotion of double-

light transmittance by
skinned facade and entry of

summer -Intruder protection second pane

-No transmission of door -View out restricted solar radiation
-Uneven room lighting
from room to room -Difficult to clean outer -Only a slight improvement
-Light redirection
-Attenuation of wind face of facade compared with a single-
systems may be installed
effects skinned facade
in facade cavity
Possible impairment of air
exchange -Flexible user
-Cost-effective way of -View out restricted -Comfortable introductions
intervention possible

of supply air in winter


optimizing a facade -Purge ventilation


-Uneven effects in room

-Direct ventilation in

-Can be retrofitted limited -Possible increased space


-Simple night cooling summer

-Little overheating in -No transmission of odour
-Difficult to clean outer
summer from room to room
face of façade
Attenuation of wind effects

-Very high user-acceptance


- Administration
-In perforated facade -Very good level of
buildings, residential


-Elemental facade comfort -High construction costs


-Area proportions and -Many ventilation options

- High-rise buildings with
panel offsets varied to suit -Can be prefabricated
natural ventilation
the required function
- High wind speeds high
-Panel offset 10-30 cm
noise-load areas
-Wind-protected solar
-Additional sound level
Room climate

screening IV. CONCLUTION

in summer

reduction with natural


-Possible unwanted entry


ventilation Because of reduction energy resources and increasing cost

of heat from overheating in
-Very little sound
the facade cavity in the world every day, energy conservation in buildings
transmission from room
-Purge ventilation at high
to room primarily focused on building systems. After 1990,
targeting the energy crisis, which can produce its own
2) Alternating facades (Table IX) energy, ventilation, heating and cooling that provides
Alternating facade is a combination of single and "intelligent facades" came up. Many researches have been
doubleskinned facades with the advantages of both. In each done about efficient using energy in building industry. The
room there is at least one element of each type. Depending research consist of heat loss and gains on builidng envelope

IACSIT International Journal of Engineering and Technology, Vol. 5, No. 6, December 2013

and also energy consumption. Basic features of energy [9] O. Lieb and L. Heusler, Double-Skin Facades, Munich, London,
Newyork: Prestel Publish Ltd., pp. 105-113, 2001.
efficient building envelope are as follows; [10] M. Wiginton and J. Harris, Intellıgent Skin, Oxford: Elsevıer,
Use of optical properties of glasses, Architectural Pres, vol. 36 pp. 2004.
Use of double facades which hot and cold air circulation [11] Architonic. [Online]. Available: http:// www. Architonic. com
between the layers of glass facades, and the use of [12] V. B. Ballard, Materials for Design, Princeton Press, London, 2013.
[13] L. Menzel, F. Desig, Costruction &Technology, Braun, Berlin, 2012.
transparent insulation materials, [14] A. Aksamija, ‘Sustainable Facdes: Desin Methods for High
Use of active and passive solar energy systems. Performance Building Envelope, John Wiley, London, 2013.
The degree of user control which may or may not [15] C. Broto, New Facades, Links International, 2013
[16] U. Knack and T. Klein, “The Future Envelope 3,” Faces Making of
coincide with improving actual comfort conditions or energy Volume 10 Research in Architectural Series, IOS Press, Amsterdam,
efficiency, must be reconciled with building management 2010.
Use of high-performance coating, heat mirror glass types
systems that may more rigidly control these factors. Ö. Eren is a lecturer at Mimar Sinan Fine Arts
Conventional curtain wall systems considering only the University, Faculty of Architecture, Building
cost of desıgn crıterıa of alternatıng facades [4]. Technolgy Department. She was assigned as research
assistant at Construction Technology Department of
One of the researches which undert the mnema of Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University in 1992. She
intelligent facades is double facades. The aim of this facades completed her master degree in 1997 and doctoral
is masimize of energy efificiency, decreaese of energy lose. program in 2002 in the same university. She was
granted with Associate Professor title in 2008. She
Double skin facades on building, are arelaive new
performed scientific researches in London, Colchester in 1995 – 1996.
technolologies in constructon field. This façades are She worked as part-time academician at Yeditepe University, Interior
significantly more expensive to install than the installed Architecture Faculty between 2003 and 2006. Currently, she works at
facade. This research is increasing everyday and it will also Mimar Sinan University, Faculty of Architecture, Department of Building
Technology and part-time academician at Bahçeşehir University, Faculty of
increase rapidly in the future. Interior Architecture. She provides lectures about steel structures,
lightweight steel structures, construction technologies.
REFERENCES Eren has published over one hundred articles and papers on the field of
[1] A. Compagno, Intelligent Glass Facades, Birkhauser Publishing Ltd., building technology around the world. In addition, her book named Steel
pp. 118, 1996. structures is published.
[2] B. Erturan, “Desıgn Prıncıples of Intellıgent Buıldıng Skıns and the
Examınatıon of Theır Applıcatıon Samples,” MSc. Thesis, M. S. F. A. B. Erturan was born in Erzurum in 1981. After
Unıversıty, İstanbul, 2011. graduating from Mehmet Akif Ersoy high school in
[3] M. Evans, “Through the Glass Cylinder,” The Architects Journal, vol. 2000, she began her undergraduate studies at
205, 1997. Karadeniz Technical University, Department of
[4] G. Hausladen, M. D. Saldanha, and P. Liedl, Clımate Skın, Berlin: Architecture, and graduated in 2004. Between 2008-
Bırkhauser Publ. Ltd., pp. 30-115, 2006. 2010 she finished her master degree in Architecture
[5] U. Knack, T. Klein, M. Bilow, and T. Auer, Façades, Basel, Boston, at Mimar Sinan Fine Arts University, Department of
Berlin: Birkhauser Publishing Ltd., vol. 89, 2007. Building Science, and has started the PhD programm
[6] X. Loncour, A. Deneyer, M. Blasco, and G. Flamant, Ventilated in the same department. Paralel to her doctoral programm and research
Double Facades, Belgian B. R. Institute, 2004. activities Banu Erturan also works for the Istanbul Metropolitan
[7] T. Nikolaou, D. Kolokotsa, and G. Stavrakakis, Introduction to Municipality Directorate of Urban Design.
Intelligent Buildings, vol. 7, 2013.
[8] C. E. Ochoa and I. G. Capeluto, “Intelligent facades in hot climates:
energy and comport strategies for successful application,” in Proc. of
25th Con. on Passive and Low Energy Architecture, Dublin, 2005.