Infrastructure Engineering - Research Publications

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    Applications of phase change materials in concrete for sustainable built environment: a review
    JAYALATH, A ; Mendis, PA ; Gammampila, GR ; Aye, L (ICSECM 2011, 2011)
    The fast economic development around the globe and high standards of living imposes an ever increasing demand for energy. As a prime consumer of world‟s material and energy resources building and construction industry has a great potential in developing new efficient and environmentally friendly materials to reduce energy consumptions in buildings. Thermal energy storage systems (TES) with Phase change materials (PCM) offer attractive means of improving the thermal mass and the thermal comfort within a building. PCMs are latent heat thermal storage (LHTS) materials with high energy storage density compared to conventional sensible heat storage materials. Concrete incorporating PCM improves the thermal mass of the building which reduces the space conditioning energy consumption and extreme temperature fluctuations within the building. The heat capacity and high density of concrete coupled with latent heat storage of PCM provides a novel energy saving concepts for sustainable built environment. Microencapsulation is a latest and advanced technology for incorporation of PCM in to concrete which creates finely dispersed PCMs with high surface area for greater amount of heat transfer. This paper reviews available literature on Phase change materials in concrete, its application and numerical modelling of composite concrete. However most of the existing TES systems have been explored with wallboards and plaster materials and comparatively a few researches have been done on TES systems using cementitious materials. Thus, there is a need for comprehensive experimental and analytical investigations on PCM applications with cementitious materials as the most widely used construction materials in buildings.
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    Application of nanomaterials in the sustainable built environment
    Gammampila, GRG ; Mendis, PAM ; Ngo, TDN ; Aye, LA ; JAYALATH, A ; RUPASINGHE, RAM (University of Moratuwa, 2010)
    Nanotechnology is widely regarded as one of the twenty-first century’s key technologies, and its economic importance is sharply on the rise. In the construction industry, nanomaterials has potentials that are already usable today, especially the functional characteristics such as increased tensile strength, self-cleaning capacity, fire resistance, and additives based on nano materials make common materials lighter, more permeable, and more resistant to wear. Nanomaterial are also considered extremely useful for roofs and facades in the built environment. They also expand design possibilities for interior and exterior rooms and spaces. Nano–insulating materials open up new possibilities for ecologically oriented sustainable infrastructure development. It has been demonstrated that nanotechnology has invented products with many unique characteristics which could significantly provide solutions current construction issues and may change the requirement and organization of construction process. This paper examines and documents applicable nanotechnology based products that can improve the sustainable development and overall competitiveness of the construction industry.
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    Application of nano insulation materials in the sustainable built environment
    Gammampila, GRG ; Mendis, PAM ; Ngo, TDN ; Aye, LA ; Herath, NCH (University of Moratuwa, 2010)
    Nanotechnology is widely being used in the built environment for its advantages in many improved engineering properties of the nano materials. Nano insulating materials open up new possibilities for ecologically oriented sustainable infrastructure development. The most widely used nano material in built environment is for the purpose of insulation to improve the energy efficiency namely in the buildings and dwellings. Nanotechnology has now provided an effective and affordable means to increase energy efficiency in pre-existing buildings as well as new construction by increasing thermal resistance. The major advantage of nano insulation materials is its benefit of translucent coatings which increase the thermal envelope of a building without reducing the square footage. The intrinsic property of nano insulating material is it can be applied to windows to reduce heat transfer from solar radiation due it its thermal resistant property and the translucent property allows diffusing of day light. The nano insulating material has significant advantage in reducing the operational energy aspects of buildings due to its valuable insulating properties. This paper examines applicable nanotechnology based products that can improve the sustainable development and overall competitiveness of the building industry. The areas of applying nano insulating material in building industry will be mainly focused on the building envelope. The paper also examines the potential advantages of using nanotechnology based insulating material in reducing the life cycle energy, reduction of material usage and enhancing the useable life span. The paper also investigates the operational energy by simulation methodology and compares the reduction of operational energy consumption.
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    New normal remote communication for collaboration
    Vaz-Serra, P ; Hui, KP ; Aye, L ( 2021-12-19)
    Presented at the 12th International Conference on Structural Engineering and construction Management (ICSECM) 2021, Kandy, Sri Lanka (17-19 December)
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    Effects of Working from Home on Greenhouse Gas Emissions and the Associated Energy Costs in Six Australian Cities
    Navaratnam, S ; Jayalath, A ; Aye, L (MDPI, 2022-04-01)
    Working from home (WFH) has been imposed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The adoption of WFH impacts energy use in the residential, commercial, and transportation sectors. Consequently, this affects the greenhouse gas emission (GHGE) and the associated energy costs to workers and employers. This study estimates the effects of WFH on the GHGE and energy-related costs in the residential, commercial, and transportation sectors. A simple linear model was used to estimate the changes in the GHGEs and cost by a typical employee when WFH practice is adopted for 1.5 and 4 days per week. The adoption of WFH reduces the operational GHGE accounted for commercial buildings and transport. However, it increases the operational GHGE accounted for residential buildings, which is a maximum of about 6% and 12%, respectively, for WFH 1.5 and 4 days. The reduction of GHGE from transport is significantly higher than that of residential buildings. The GHGE reductions from the transport sector are about 30% and 80%, respectively, for WFH 1.5 days and 4 days per week. WFH for 1.5 and 4 days per week reduces the national annual GHGE by about 1.21 Mt CO2-e and 5.76 Mt CO2-e, respectively. Further, the annual transportation cost of an employee is reduced by 30% and 80% in each city when the employee WFH for 1.5 and 4 days per week. The outcomes of this study offer a direction to reduce energy consumption and related costs and potential future research avenues on this topic. Further, the findings also help policymakers develop a hybrid work model for the post-COVID-19 pandemic.
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    A multi-layered energy resilience framework and metrics for energy master planning of communities: A university campus case study
    Charani Shandiz, S ; Rismanchi, B ; Foliente, G ; Aye, L (Society of Risk Analysis, 2021-12-05)
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    Lessons learned from PCM embedded radiant chilled ceiling experiments in Melbourne
    Mousavi, S ; Rismanchi, B ; Brey, S ; Aye, L (Instituto Superior de Engenharia do Porto, 2021-09-14)
    Buildings are responsible for over a third of energy consumption worldwide, particularly for the increasing demand of air-conditioners in response to the more extreme heat around the globe. It is imperative to move towards more energy-efficient space cooling alternatives. The integration of phase change material (PCM) with a radiant chilled ceiling (RCC) is a promising technology due to its benefits regarding energy efficiency and indoor environmental quality. This article presents a field study conducted on a newly-developed PCM embedded radiant chilled ceiling (PCM-RCC) installed in a stand-alone cabin located in Melbourne. The study evaluates the thermal and energy performance of the system through investigation of the transient thermal behaviour of PCM panels in charging-discharging cycles, the indoor comfort conditions, and the electricity peak demand. It was observed that the proposed PCM-RCC can provide satisfactory comfort conditions and contribute to load shifting if a refined operating strategy is applied. The efficiency of PCM recharge overnight depends on several factors that need to be carefully considered in design. The challenges related to the implementation of optimal operating dynamic schedules in response to the thermal behaviour of PCM-RCC, and accurate weather forecasting should be addressed to realise the full potential of this technology.
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    Heat Pump: An enabling technology in the future low carbon energy systems?
    Aye, L ( 2022-04-06)
    Invited Talk: Presented at the International Symposium on Energy Management and Sustainability (ISEMAS) 2022, 5-9 April 2022
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    Solar Boosted Heat Pump (SBHP) in Australia: A lesson learned
    Aye, L ( 2022-03-09)
    Presented at the workshop on the IEA EBC new Annex proposal “Evaluation and Demonstration of Actual Energy Efficiency of Heat Pumps in Buildings” 8-9 March 2022