What is HDD ?

# Heating degree day (HDD) is a measurement designed to reflect the demand for energy needed to heat a building.
# It is derived from measurements of outside air temperature. # The heating requirements for a given structure at a specific location are considered to be directly proportional to the number of HDD at that location. # A similar measurement, cooling degree day (CDD), reflects the amount of energy used to cool a home or business.

How is HDD calculated ?
# Heating degree days are defined relative to a base temperature # Base Temperature=the outside temperature above which a building needs no heating. # The most appropriate base temperature for any particular building depends on the temperature that the building is heated to, and the nature of the building (including the heat-generating occupants and equipment within it). # The base temperature is usually an indoor temperature which is adequate for human comfort (internal gains increase this temperature by about 1 to 2°C). # For calculations relating to any particular building, HDD should be selected with the most appropriate base temperature for that building. # However, for historical reasons HDD are often made available with base temperatures of 60 °F (16 °C) or 65 °F (18 °C)—base temperatures that are approximately appropriate for a good proportion of buildings.

# There are a number of ways in which HDD can be calculated.

# The more detailed a record of temperature data, the more accurate the HDD that can be calculated.
# HDD are often calculated using simple approximation methods that use daily temperature readings instead of more detailed temperature records such as half-hourly readings. FORMULA 1 :

DD = Σ(Tb − Tav)

# This method works satisfactorily if the outside air temperature does not exceed the base temperature. In climates where this is likely to occur from time to time, there are refinements to the simple calculation which allow some 'credit' for the period of the day when the air is warm enough for heating to be unnecessary.


Tmin>Tbase (Tmax+Tmin)/2>Tbase Tmax>=Tbase

Dh=0 Dh=(Tbase-Tmin)/4 Dh=(Tbase-Tmin)/2-(Tmax-Tbase)/4



# This more accurate algorithm enables results to be computed in temperate climates (maritime as well as continental) throughout the year (not just during a defined heating season) and on a weekly as well as monthly basis

50 45 40


30 25 20 15 10 5 0 0 100 200 300 400

Using Formula 1=399.61 Using Formula 2=405.15

Data Source: NasaPower.larc.gov





Using Formula 1=412.78 Using Formula 2=424.59


MIN TEMP AVG TEMP Base Temperature



0 0 100 200 300 400

Data Source: NasaPower.larc.gov

# HDD can be added over periods of time to provide a rough estimate of seasonal heating requirements.

# In the course of a heating season, for example, the number of HDD for New York City is 5,050 whereas that for Barrow, Alaska is 19,990. Thus, one can say that, for a given home of similar structure and insulation, around four times the energy would be required to heat the home in Barrow than in New York.
# However, this is a theoretical approach as the level of insulation of a building affects the demand for heating. # For example temperatures often drop below the base temperature during night (daily low temperature in diurnal variation), but because of insulation heating is unnecessary. # Also, buildings include heat mass such as concrete, that is able to store energy of the sun absorbed in daytime. Thus, even if the heating degree days indicate a demand for heating sufficient insulation of a building can make heating unnecessary.

# HDD provides a simple metric for quantifying the amount of heating that buildings in a particular location need over a certain period (e.g. a particular month or year). # In conjunction with the average U-value for a building they provide a means of roughly estimating the amount of energy required to heat the building over that period. # One HDD means that the temperature conditions outside the building were equivalent to being below a defined threshold comfort temperature inside the building by one degree for one day. Thus heat has to be provided inside the building to maintain thermal comfort. # Say we are given the number of heating degree days D in one year and we wish to calculate the energy required by a building. # We know that heat needs to be provided at the rate at which it is being lost to the environment.

HDD USE contd.
# This can be calculated as the sum of the heat losses per degree of each element of the buildings' thermal envelope (such as windows, walls, and roof) # OR as the average U-value of the building multiplied by the area of the thermal envelope of the building, or quoted directly for the whole building. # This gives the buildings' specific heat loss rate Pspecific, generally given in Watts per Kelvin (W/K). # Total energy in kWh is then given by:

Q = Pspecific×24×D/1000 [kWh]

# Note that as total energy consumption is in kWh and heating degree days are [no. days × degrees] we must convert W/K into kWh per degree per day by dividing by 1000 (to convert W to kW), and multiplying by 24 hours in a day (1 kW = 1kWh per hour). Since one degree temperature difference in Celsius and Kelvin scale are the same, they get cancelled and no conversion is required.

# Calculations using HDD have several problems. # Heat requirements are not linear with temperature, and heavily insulated buildings have a lower "balance point". (The balance point is the outdoor temperature at which the heat gain equals the total heat losses.) # The amount of heating and cooling required depends on several factors besides outdoor temperature: => How well insulated a particular building is, => The amount of solar radiation reaching the interior of a house, => The number of electrical appliances running => The amount of wind outside, => What temperature the occupants find comfortable.

# Another important factor is the amount of relative humidity indoors; this is important in determining how comfortable an individual will be. # Other variables such as precipitation, cloud cover, heat index, building albedo, and snow cover can also alter a building's thermal response. # Another problem with HDD is that care needs to be taken if they are to be used to compare climates internationally, because of the different baseline temperatures used as standard in different countries and the use of the Fahrenheit scale in the US and the Celsius scale almost everywhere else. This is further compounded by the use of different approximation methods in different countries.

Present degree day formula From the ASHRAE Handbook, 1980 Systems Volume, the general equation for the modified degree-day method is:

# The key to improving the accuracy of the degree day method is the adoption of "system simulation" (i.e., evaluating the heat losses as met by the building's heating system). # To develop the degree-day equation one must calculate the net effect of the heat gains and heat losses. # We have to evaluate the transmission heat loss, the ventilation heat loss and the internal heat gain simultaneously.

Occupied vs. Unoccupied hrs./week
# The first step in obtaining an accurate degree-day calculation procedure which evaluates the effects of the internal heat gains is the separation of the various occupancy periods. # For example, most buildings are only utilized 40 hours per week, which means that often the internal heat gain only affects the transmission heat losses 40 hours out of 168 hours., or 24 percent of the week. Therefore, the heat loss is unaffected by any internal heat gain 76 percent of the week. # We can use this ratio with reasonable accuracy toproportion the degreedays number into "occupied" and "unoccupied'' components:

# Wikipedia.org – Degree Days, Heating Degree Days # Nasapower.larc.gov.in – Data Source # Sustainable Architectural Science - Szokolay # A Simplified Degree-day Method for Commercial and Industrial BuildingsALFRED GUNTERMANN