Building Simulation

, Volume 11, Issue 6, pp 1163–1177 | Cite as

Impact of passive climate adaptation measures and building orientation on the energy demand of a detached lightweight semi-portable building

  • Raffaele VasaturoEmail author
  • Twan van Hooff
  • Ivo Kalkman
  • Bert Blocken
  • Pieter van Wesemael
Open Access
Research Article Building Thermal, Lighting, and Acoustics Modeling


The building energy demand for heating and cooling is changing due to climate change. The adoption of climate change adaptation measures at the building scale aims at limiting heating and cooling demands. In previous studies on adaptation measures little attention has been paid to lightweight semi-portable buildings, which are increasingly used to temporarily house the growing number of small households (1–2 persons) in peripheral and derelict areas. In this paper the impact of passive climate adaptation measures and building orientation on heating and cooling demands is assessed for a detached, lightweight, semi-portable residential building by means of building energy simulations (BES), considering two climate scenarios for the Netherlands: current climate and a future climate (2050). The results show that the most efficient adaptation measure consists in a combination of exterior solar shading and an increase of thermal resistance of the building envelope, which reduces the annual heating and cooling demand–averaged over eight building orientations – by 11% for the current climate and 15% for the future climate. The impact of building orientation varies according to the climate scenario. Compared to the average over the eight orientations considered, the annual cooling demand for a single orientation varies between about −31% and +22% and between about −24% and +18% for the current and future climate, respectively. For the case without adaptation measures, optimizing the building orientation leads to annual total energy savings of about 4% for the current and 3% for the future climate.


building energy simulation heating demand cooling demand passive climate adaptation measures building orientation climate change 



This research was financially supported by the PhD Impulse Program of the Eindhoven University of Technology, in collaboration with the construction company Heijmans B.V., the Netherlands. Twan van Hooff is currently a postdoctoral fellow of the Research Foundation Flanders (FWO) and acknowledges its financial support (project FWO 12R9718N).


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Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

Authors and Affiliations

  • Raffaele Vasaturo
    • 1
    Email author
  • Twan van Hooff
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ivo Kalkman
    • 1
  • Bert Blocken
    • 1
    • 2
  • Pieter van Wesemael
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of the Built EnvironmentEindhoven University of TechnologyEindhoventhe Netherlands
  2. 2.Department of Civil EngineeringKU LeuvenLeuvenBelgium

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