Paper Conference

Proceedings of Building Simulation 2017: 15th Conference of IBPSA


Investigating the Use of Earth Tubes for Passive Cooling and Ventilation through Thermal Modelling

Michael Morley
The University of Adelaide, Adelaide, Australia

Abstract: Household energy use accounts for 25.4% of energy end-use in Australia. A large proportion of this energy use comes from the use of heating and cooling appliances. This research investigated the application of ’earth tubes’ as a strategy to minimise cooling and heating energy use in two hypothetical buildings in Adelaide, South Australia. Thermal simulation was used to model a base case of each building before applying the earth tubes. Improvement strategies, such as double-glazing, Timbercrete SIS walls, rammed earth walls, and higher insulation in the roof, were first tested and provided minor thermal improvement. The year-round indoor temperature stabilized dramatically with the application of the earth tubes and appropriate natural ventilation operation, with no cooling and minimal heating appliance use, thus, reducing total energy use and the associated greenhouse gas emissions.
Pages: 2641 - 2650