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The Project

Herb project will develop and demonstrate energy efficient new and innovative technologies and solutions for retrofitting and performance monitoring of a number of typical residential buildings in EU countries. Technologies envisaged for envelope retrofitting include various types of insulation materials such as Aerobel/aerogel, starch micro-porous insulation, vacuum insulated panels, smart windows, surface coatings, multi-functional lightweight materials integrated with phase change material for thermal storage and integrated heat recovery panels. Energy efficient solutions will also be deployed including energy efficient lighting using LED and light pipes, energy efficient HVAC such as natural ventilation, passive heating/cooling, heat pumps integrated with heat recovery and thermal storage, and renewable energy systems based on solar thermal and photovoltaics. The technologies and solutions will be affordable, durable, easy for installation and compatible with existing building functions and aesthetics as well as energy efficient. The types of building for retrofitting will include detached, semidetached and terrace houses, and flats of different ages representing different types of inefficient construction in terms of energy demand such as solid walls, single glazing and poorly insulated roofs and floors. Methods for measurement of building performance before and after retrofitting will include leakage test and thermal imaging to determine the major areas of building envelope for improvement, in addition to smart energy metering for individual technologies and building as a whole. The buildings will be retrofitted to at least the latest national building standards for new buildings. The type and number of technology deployed will be optimised using life cycle energy analysis for each type of building.

In total, it is estimated that the combination of the above innovations will lead to the following (for poorly insulated existing buildings with most cost-effective solutions):

  • cumulative annual energy savings of at least 80% measured against building performance before retrofit;
  • at least a 60% reduction of CO2 emissions;
  • a global energy consumption (excluding appliances) of 50 kWh/m²/year while reducing peak loads against the values measured before retrofit;
  • at least 80% energy saving for lighting over the average consumption of the installed base;
  • user acceptability and long term continued efficient operation;

a pay-back period of between two and five years compared to current state of the art, depending on the type of technology and solution.

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The work programme will involve development of computer models for optimising components, technologies and solutions, analysing dynamic energy demand of buildings and predicting microclimate indoors, development and testing of technologies and solutions under controlled laboratory conditions, retrofitting and monitoring residential buildings in different climatic conditions, and a socio-economic analysis. These outcomes will be delivered through innovative solutions developed by a Consortium comprising leading companies, universities and public institutions from 10 European countries. The industrial participants are leaders in sustainable building services, development, manufacturing and installation of energy efficient technologies and solutions and the participating universities have excellent research experience in sustainable energy and energy efficient technology applications to buildings.

Concept and Objectives

To achieve the above solutions and targets, the proposed project has set up the overall and specific scientific and technical objectives. The overall objective is to develop energy efficient technologies and holistic solutions for retrofitting residential buildings and to demonstrate how existing residential buildings can be refurbished up to at least the latest national standards for new residential buildings.

The specific objectives are as follows:

  1. Develop computer models for optimisation of components for each technology and solution and optimise each and combination of different technologies and solutions for retrofitting different types of residential building.
  2. Develop a computer model for dynamic simulation of energy demand and supply of residential buildings.
  3. Develop a computer model for simulation of the indoor environment in residential buildings.
  4. Develop a control strategy for optimum operation of technologies and solutions.
  5. Model the socio-economic aspects of retrofitting of residential buildings.
  6. Develop technologies for energy efficient envelope retrofitting such as aerogel, starch micro-porous insulation, vacuum insulated panels, phase change materials, multi-functional facades, integrated heat recovery panels, smart windows and surface coatings.
  7. Develop solutions for energy efficient lighting such as LED and light pipes.
  8. Develop solutions for energy efficient HVAC including natural ventilation, passive heating/cooling and heat pump integrated with heat recovery and thermal storage.
  9. Develop strategies for optimum integration of renewable energy systems from solar thermal, photovoltaics to ground source heat pumps.
  10. Test the performance of the technologies and solutions under laboratory controlled conditions.
  11. Retrofit innovative technologies and solutions in buildings.
  12. Measure building energy use before retrofitting.
  13. Monitor the performance of each technology/solution and building in terms of energy use and occupant comfort for 12 months.
  14. Manage financial and any related administrative aspects of the project.
  15. Coordinate scientific research activities.
  16. Run public engagement to demonstrate the technologies, solutions and retrofitted buildings.
  17. Disseminate and exploit research results.

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In summary, the project is broken down into four technical work packages, a financial management package, a coordination package and dissemination and exploitation package. These work packages are designed to successfully deliver the project outcomes on completion of the project. Overviews of the work packages are outlined below.

Work Package 1: Computer modelling of the performance of technologies, solutions and buildings as well as socio-economic analysis (Work Package leader – UNIBO – in collaboration with all partners).

Work Package 2: Development and testing of the technologies and solutions for retrofitting (Work Package leader – UNOTT – in collaboration with all partners)

Work Package 3: Retrofitting of buildings (Work Package leader – MARK – in collaboration with all partners)

Work Package 4: Monitoring of the performance of the technologies, solutions and buildings under different climates (Work Package leader – EVALUE – in collaboration with UNOTT, LHA, UNIBO, COBO, ALMADA, UOA, HEIG, ONYX and TNO)

Work Package 5: Financial and Administrative Management (Work Package leader – UNOTT – in collaboration with other partners)

Work Package 6: Scientific Coordination (Work Package leader – UNOTT – in collaboration with GREEN as well as other partners)

Work Package 7: Dissemination and exploitation (Work Package leader – GREEN – in collaboration with all partners)

Impacts Forseen

To understand the potential benefits and impact of the technologies/solutions, a simple estimation is carried out for retrofitting a detached house in the UK conditions. Further information on the house is given in the appendix together with the estimated current energy use and the potential of energy savings using the energy efficient technologies/solutions. The current energy use per unit floor area for heating is about 280 kWh/(m2year). The estimated heating energy use after retrofit to the current UK standard for new buildings is 48 kWh/(m2year), leading to an 83% reduction of the energy use. Retrofitting the solid walls (to a U-value of 0.3 W/m2K) can be achieved by adding a layer of aerogel or starch micro-porous insulation of no thicker than 0.05 m, which could be retrofitted internally but would be impossible with conventional insulation methods such as cavity wall insulation. Retrofitting the solid walls would reduce the annual heat loss by 86% from 156 kWh/(m2 floor area) to 22 kWh/(m2 floor area) or by 105 kWh/(m2 wall area) from 122 kWh/(m2 wall area) to 17 kWh/(m2 wall area). The reduction in heat loss would increase to 91% for retrofitting to a higher standard with a U-value of 0.15 W/m2K. The cost for retrofitting depends on the type of technology/solution. For starch micro-porous insulation, e.g., the material cost is negligible because it is derived from waste. It is estimated that the price for the starch micro-porous insulation when commercialised would be approximately 6.5 €/m2. An especial attraction of starch is that it is a biomass derived, sustainable material and would represent a step towards the longer term objective o moving away from fossil carbon based construction materials. Furthermore, if used extensively for insulation, it would help sequester carbon dioxide. For gas central heating with a unit price of 0.05 €/kWh, the annual heating bill reduction after retrofitting the solid walls to the current insulation standard is 5.25 €/(m2 wall area). Hence, the payback period is less than one and half years. Also, for gas heating, the cost for retrofitting solid walls per unit CO2 emissions reduction is 0.34 €/kg and the cost per percentage efficiency gain is 0.075 €/%. Retrofitting to a higher insulation level as we intend than specified in the current UK standard would lead to more energy savings. Similar analysis could be performed to show the energy savings and cost effectiveness for lighting and other services.

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Results

Time Progress

Project planning and timetable. An overview of project planning with timing for all work packages and tasks is given in Table 1.3.

Work package Task Description Months
3 6 9 12 15 18 21 24 27 30 33 36 39 42
 

 

WP1

1.1 Optimisation of components, technologies and solutions
1.2 Dynamic simulation of building energy demand
1.3 Simulation of indoor environment
1.4 Development of a control strategy
1.5 Socio-economic modelling
 

WP2

2.1 Development   of technologies and solutions for retrofitting
2.2 Laboratory testing of technologies and solutions for retrofitting
2.3 Development and testing of control system components
WP3 3.1 Planning of building retrofitting
3.2 Retrofitting of buildings
3.3 Implementation of control strategy
 

WP4

4.1 Measurement of building energy use
4.2 Monitoring of the performance of retrofitted buildings
4.3 Economic analysis of retrofitting of residential buildings
WP5 5.1 -5.2 Financial and administrative management
WP6 6.1 Scientific coordination
WP7 7.1 Dissemination
7.2 Exploitation

Deliverables

Del. No1 Deliverable name WPno. Nature2 Dissemination level3 Delivery date4
D1 Computer models of various elements for technologies, solutions and buildings 1 O RE Month 12
D2 Results of technology/solution optimisation 1 R PU Month 12
D3 Results of dynamic simulation of building energy demand 1 R PU Month 12
D4 Results of microclimate modelling 1 R PU Month 12
D5 A control strategy for optimum operation of technologies and solutions 1 R RE Month 12
D6 Results of socio-economic investigation 1 R PU Months 12 &42
D7 Technologies and solutions developed for retrofitting 2 P RE Months 15 to21
D8 Results of laboratory testing of technologies and solutions 2 R PU Months 18 to21
D9 Technologies    and     solutions    ready                               for retrofitting 2 P PU Months 18 to21
D10 Results of control system testing 2 R PU Month 18
D11 Detailed       plan       of                        solution/technology retrofitting 3 R PU Month 16
D12 Buildings retrofitted 3 D PU Month 30
D13 Measured energy use before retrofitting 4 R PU Months   18   -30
D14 Measured   results    and    analysis    for                        the retrofitted buildings 4 R PU Month 42
D15 First Report to the Commission 5 R RE Month 12
D16 Second Report to the Commission 5 R RE Month 30
D17 Final Report to the Commission 5 R PU Month 42
D18 Technology Implementation Plan 1 6 R RE Month 30
D19 Technology Implementation Plan 2 6 R RE Month 42
D20 Dissemination Plan 7 R RE Month 12
D21 Exploitation Plan 7 R RE Month 12
D22 Survey data of occupants’ satisfaction 7 R PU Month 42
D23 Project website with regular updating 7 O PU Month 12
D24 Handbook of guidelines and best practice for retrofitting of residential buildings 7 R PU Month 42
D25 Report on case studies of retrofitted buildings 7 R PU Month 42

1 Deliverable numbers in order of delivery dates: D1 – Dn

2 Please indicate the nature of the deliverable using one of the following codes:

R = Report, P = Prototype, D = Demonstrator, O = Other

3 Please indicate the dissemination level using one of the following codes:

PU = Public

PP = Restricted to other programme participants (including the Commission Services).

RE = Restricted to a group specified by the consortium (including the Commission Services). CO = Confidential, only for members of the consortium (including the Commission Services).

4 Measured in months from the project start date (month 1).

 

 

Milestones

List of milestones

 

Milestone number Milestone name WP

involved

Expected date *1 Means of verification *2
1 Computer models 1 12 Computer   models                        fully developed
2 Results of computer modelling and the socio-economic analysis

made available

1 12 and 42 Modelling complete and data quality validated
3 Novel         aerogel                     insulation material and VIP developed 2 15 to 21 Specifications of the material and panel
4 Innovative heat pumps including GSHP developed 2 15 to 21 Specifications of the heat pumps
5 Novel solar thermal and PV systems developed 2 15 to 21 Specifications of the systems
6 Energy        efficient                       lighting technology developed 2 15 to 21 Specifications of the technology
7 Smart    window    and                 coating technology developed 2 15 to 21 Specifications of the technology
8 Multifunctional                                                    facade technology developed 2 15 to 21 Specifications of the technology
9 Integrated heat recovery panel and          energy            efficient HVAC

developed

2 15 to 21 Specifications of the panel and system
10 Facade         integrated         PCM technology developed 2 15 to 21 Specifications of the technology
11 Starch micro-porous insulation material developed 2 15 to 21 Specifications of the material
12 Novel        coating                    technology developed 2 15 to 21 Specifications of the technology
13 Performance           data                                       of technologies and solutions made

available

2 18 to 21 Test complete and data quality validated
14 Technologies     and                                 solutions ready for installation 2 18 to 21 Prototypes completed
15 Technologies     and                                 solutions installed 3 30 Photos of retrofitted buildings
16 Building      energy                       assessment before retrofitting completed 4 18 – 30 Measurement complete and data quality validated
17 Retrofitted building performance assessed 4 42 Monitoring complete and performance data quality

validated

18 Public demonstration of technologies and buildings achieved 7 42 Public demonstration of 12 retrofitted buildings with at least 30 visitors

each

19 Survey   data    of                  users/visitors acceptance       of                      retrofitted

buildings made available

7 42 Survey complete and data quality validated

 *1 Measured in months from the project start date (month 1).
*2 Show how you will confirm the milestone has been attained: prototype completed; software validated; field survey complete and data quality validated

  • Complex Ltd
  • Lasting Values
  • TNO
  • HTF Stuttgart
  • IZOCAM
  • Comune di Bologna
  • HEIG-VD
  • University of Bologna
  • National Kapodistrian University of Athens
  • University of Nottingham
  • ALMADA
  • Green Evolution
  • asra
  • iperbole
  • ONYX Solar
  • Kingspan
  • PCM