Darren Robinson

Darren Robinson
University of Nottingham | Notts · Department of Architecture and Built Environment

About

69
Publications
19,466
Reads
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4,414
Citations
Citations since 2016
10 Research Items
2864 Citations
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400

Publications

Publications (69)
Article
Accurately and efficiently predicting the LHV of MSW is vital for designing and operating a waste-to-energy plant. However, previous prediction models possess limited geographical applicability. In this paper, we employ multiple linear regression and artificial neural network (ANN) techniques to predict LHV. These data-driven models utilize 151 glo...
Article
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A 3D model communicates more effectively than a 2D model, hence the applications of 3D city models are rapidly gaining significance in urban studies. However, presently, there is a dearth of free of cost, high-resolution 3D city models available for use. This paper offers potential solutions to this problem by providing a globally replicable method...
Article
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Microsimulation is a class of Urban Building Energy Modeling techniques in which energetic interactions between buildings are explicitly resolved. Examples include SUNtool and CitySim+, both of which employ a sophisticated radiosity-based algorithm to solve for radiation exchange. The computational cost of this algorithm increases in proportion to...
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Sustainable municipal solid waste (MSW) management is regarded as one of the key elements for achieving urban sustainability via mitigating global climate change, recycling resources and recovering energy. Landfill is considered as the least preferable disposal method and the EU Landfill Directive (ELD) announced in 1999 requires member countries t...
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Understanding the energy demand of a city’s housing stock is an important focus for local and national administrations to identify strategies for reducing carbon emissions. Building energy simulation offers a promising approach to understand energy use and test plans to improve the efficiency of residential properties. As part of this, models of th...
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The age of a building influences its form and fabric composition, and this in turn is critical to inferring its energy performance. However, often this data is unknown. In this paper, we present a methodology to automatically identify the construction period of houses, for the purpose of urban energy modelling and simulation. We describe two major...
Article
Estimating residential building energy use across large spatial extents is vital for identifying and testing effective strategies to reduce carbon emissions and improve urban sustainability. This task is underpinned by the availability of accurate models of building stock from which appropriate parameters may be extracted. For example, the form of...
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Many papers have been written over the last years addressing the potential of decentralized solar thermal systems in District Heating Networks (DHN), assuming that the network can be used as a virtual storage so that prosumers can release excess solar energy into the network and use it later when it is needed.
Book
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Findings and lessons learnt for European cities from the INSMART project: A new methodology for smarter energy planning, tested in four EU cities. An EU-funded project under the FP7 Programme with 10 partners from 4 member states 2013-2017
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This paper presents a new dynamic physical energy model of building for simulating the energy demand of cities. Firstly, a justification it is given regarding the necessity of a new building model and the advantages of using modular building simulation when dealing with large numbers of buildings in an urban context. The main motivation was a flexi...
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Strategies to reduce domestic heating loads by minimizing the infiltration of cold air through adventitious openings located in the thermal envelopes of houses are highlighted by the building codes of many countries. Consequent reductions of energy demand and CO2e emission are often unquantified by empirical evidence. Instead, a mean heating season...
Conference Paper
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European policy has acknowledged the significance of local and regional communities for the deployment of new low carbon technologies and their potential for sustainable energy production and use. In this respect a number of initiatives and programmes (e.g. Covenant of Mayors) have been set up to engage European cities in the effort towards a low c...
Conference Paper
Urban rehabilitation is crucial for the sustainability of European cities. It represents a significant path for reducing fossil fuel consumption and CO2 emissions to reach EU goals for 2020 and beyond. The built environment is currently responsible for 40 % of total energy use and 36 % of CO2 emissions. The residential sector alone accounts for 75%...
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Field studies have shown that local climate is strongly influenced by urban structures. This influences both energy consumption and the pedestrian comfort. It is thus useful to be able to simulate the urban environment to take these effects into account in building and urban design. But for computational reasons, conventional computational fluid dy...
Article
Based on the analyses of data from two distinct measurement campaigns conducted in residential indoor environments in Japan and Switzerland, we identify the specificities of occupants’ behaviour with respect to their interactions with windows, including the choice of opening angles for axial openings. As a first step, each dataset is analysed to de...
Chapter
The estimation of building’s energy use at the urban scale is an increasingly popular and necessary approach to minimise the primary energy use and GHG emissions. However, this activity involves the collection and management of a huge amount of data, which is of- ten not organised in a (re)usable way by neither collectivities nor researchers. This...
Article
Using extensive field survey data acquired over the past 8 years at the Solar Energy and Building Physics Laboratory at EPFL in Switzerland, comprehensive models of occupants' presence, opening and closing of windows and the raising and lowering of blinds have been developed. These new models have been integrated within a new urban energy modelling...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In this paper we present a method to simulate res-idential building occupants' activities, which can be directly used to predict occupants' presence and as an input to models of occupants' behavior, resulting in more coherent and accurate predictions of build-ings' energy demands for heating, ventilating and air-conditioning as well as for lighting...
Conference Paper
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To better understand how we can improve urban sustainability we need to focus our predictive efforts at the grassroots level of individual inhabitants. To this end we propose a multi agent simulation platform. In describing each element of this platform we review research advances in modelling occupants’ presence, activities, behaviours, comfort an...
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Based on results from a field survey campaign conducted in Switzerand, we show that occupants' variations in clothing choices, which are relatively unconstrained, are best described by the daily mean outdoor temperature and that major clothing adjustments occur rarely during the day. We then develop an ordinal logistic model of the probability dist...
Article
Real cities are comprised of a diverse, random arrangement of building positions, shapes, and sizes. Yet most of the urban parameterisations thus far developed share the assumption that a city is made up of either a regular array of parallelepipeds or infinitely long canopies. The inputs to these models, which include street width, building width,...
Article
Occupants exercise adaptive actions in response to discomforting environmental stimuli in an attempt to restore their comfort. These responses to adaptive actions are either ignored (conventional PMV models) or handled in an aggregated way (adaptive thermal comfort models). Furthermore the availability of adaptive actions and their effectiveness te...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
One of the key sources of uncertainty in building simulation relates to the presence and behaviour of occupants. Fortunately, several academic groups have been working to address this uncertainty, particularly in relation to the use of windows and the corresponding impact on building heat and mass transfers. But these models tend to be based on hig...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Using extensive field survey data acquired over the past seven years at the Solar Energy and Building Physics Laboratory at EPFL in Switzerland, models of occupants’ presence, opening and closing of windows and the raising and lowering of blinds have been developed. These new models, together with existing models of lighting and appliance use, have...
Article
With very low rates of replacement of the existing somewhat dated housing stock a key challenge for nations to meet their emissions reduction targets during the coming years will be to improve the energy performance of existing buildings within their cities. In this paper we describe the preliminary form of a system dynamics model of the housing st...
Article
In this paper we describe a new methodology for optimising building and urban geometric forms for the utilisation of solar irradiation, whether by passive or active means. For this we use a new evolutionary algorithm (a hybrid CMA-ES/HDE algorithm) to search the user-defined parameter space, within defined constraints. The fitness function, solar i...
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There is an increasing interest in the use of computer algorithms to identify combinations of parameters which optimise the energy performance of buildings. For such problems, the objective function can be multi-modal and needs to be approximated numerically using building energy simulation programs. As these programs contain iterative solution alg...
Article
In order to improve the sustainability of new and existing urban settlements it is desirable to maximise the utilisation of the solar energy incident on the building envelope, whether by passive or active means. To this end we have coupled a multi-objective optimisation algorithm with the backwards ray tracing program RADIANCE which itself uses a c...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Based on almost 18 months of continuous direct measurements coupled with an electronic questionnaire, we have analysed the influence of indoor temperature and illuminance, outdoor climate parameters, thermal and visual sensation, clothing and season on the perceived productivity of office occupants. Using linear regression analysis, we have identif...
Article
Based on 6 years of continuous measurements, we have analysed in detail the occupancy, thermal and visual parameters influencing actions on shading devices in order to derive an accurate model for the prediction of their usage in office buildings. This article begins by presenting some of the key findings from these analyses. Informed by other deve...
Article
Based on almost seven years of continuous measurements, we have analysed in detail the influence of occupancy patterns, indoor temperature and outdoor climate parameters (temperature, wind speed and direction, relative humidity and rainfall) on window opening and closing behaviour. In this we have also considered the variability of behaviours betwe...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Based on six years of continuous measurements, we have analysed in detail the occupancy, thermal and visual parameters influencing blind usage behaviour. This paper begins by presenting some of the key findings from these analyses. Informed by other developments in the literature, we go on to propose an approach for a comprehensive stochastic model...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In this paper we describe new software “CitySim” that has been conceived to support the more sustainable planning of urban settlements. This first version focuses on simulating buildings’ energy flows, but work is also under way to model energy embodied in materials as well as the flows of water and waste and inter-relationships between these flows...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Based on almost seven years of continuous measurements we have analysed in detail the influence of occupancy patterns, indoor temperature and outdoor climate parameters (temperature, wind speed and direction, relative humidity and rainfall) on window opening and closing behaviour. This paper presents the development and testing of several modelling...
Article
This paper describes the results of initial experiments to apply computational algorithms to explore a large parameter space containing many variables in the search for an optimal solution for the sustainable design of an urban development using a potentially complicated fitness function. This initial work concentrates on varying the placement of b...
Article
Based on almost seven years of continuous measurements we have analysed in detail the influence of occupancy patterns, indoor temperature and outdoor climate parameters (temperature, wind speed and direction, relative humidity and rainfall) on window opening and closing behaviour. This paper presents the development and testing of several modelling...
Article
In order to improve the sustainability of new and existing urban settlements it is desirable to maximise the utilisation of the solar energy incident on the building envelope, whether by passive or active means. To this end we have coupled a multi-objective optimisation algorithm with the backwards ray tracing program RADIANCE which itself uses a c...
Article
Full-text available
Climate Modelling is a complex task. One of the most important reasons is the presence of a large variety of spatio-temporal scales. There are climatic changes that take place over a time period of a few months and then there are gusts which might last only a few seconds. Similarly there can be a strong influence on the weather of a city due to the...
Article
Full-text available
Computer modelling at the urban scale is an increasingly vibrant area of research activity which aims to support designers to optimise the performance of new and existing urban developments. But the parameter space of an urban development is infinitely large, so that the probability of identifying an optimal configuration of urban design variables...
Article
This paper describes an algorithm for the simulation of occupant presence, to be later used as an input for future occupant behaviour models within building simulation tools. By considering occupant presence as an inhomogeneous Markov chain interrupted by occasional periods of long absence, the model generates a time series of the state of presence...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
In this paper we discuss progress that has been made in modelling of urban resource flows to support urban designers to optimise the sustainability of their design and planning proposals. In particular we consider models of (i) resource availability, (ii) energy demand and (iii) more general resource flows. We also critique this and from this discu...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Several recent attempts to develop models for predicting the probability with which windows will be opened have recently been developed, using external and/or internal thermal stimuli. However, their limitation to thermal stimuli is questionable and there is no clear consensus whether indoor or outdoor conditions are determinant. In this paper we p...
Article
Based on the results from a field survey campaign, this article describes three new developments which have been integrated to provide a comprehensive basis for the evaluation of overheating risk in offices. Firstly, a set of logistic regression equations have been derived to predict the probability of office occupants’ adaptation of personal and e...
Article
During the warm summer of 2006 a comprehensive longitudinal field survey of the adaptive actions of occupants, their thermal satisfaction and the coincident environmental conditions was conducted in eight Swiss office buildings. We have applied logistic regression techniques to these results to predict the probability of occupants’ actions to adapt...
Article
It is important for building designers to be able to judge if a space is likely to overheat, whether to determine if HVAC plant is required or to design this out by passive means. To this end several overheating risk criteria have recently been published. These tend to be based on some limiting number of occasions that an indoor temperature may be...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Based on results from a field survey campaign, this paper describes three new developments which have been integrated to provide for a comprehensive basis for the evaluation of overheating risk in offices. Firstly, a set of logistic regression equations have been derived to predict the probability of office occupants' adaptation of personal and env...
Article
This paper describes the development and application of a new unique tool to support designers to optimise the sustainability of urban neighbourhoods (SUNtool). In this the paper introduces (i) the software architecture, (ii) the integrated solver and related innovations in the modelling of radiation exchange, reduced thermal modelling, stochastic...
Article
As part of a project to simulate the energy flows within urban districts, this paper describes a simplified model to simulate heat flows in buildings. Taking a standard two-node resistance–capacitance model as a starting point, we discuss developments to improve the handling of external surface radiant and convective energy exchanges, internal conv...
Article
Common indicators used to examine the potential for utilising natural radiation of urban forms include the sky view factor (Vs), the height to width ratio and the urban horizon angle. These indicators are conveniently related to one another. In comparing simulations of sky view factor with those of simulated solar irradiation, which itself relates...
Article
This paper describes a new model for predicting natural interior illumination in the urban context. A simplified radiosity algorithm is used to define the external luminous environment and this model structure is used to predict internal illumination from sky and external obstructions for the range of sky conditions. This illumination is predicted...
Article
The radiant external environment may be described by two hemispheres, above and below the horizontal plane, which are discretised into patches of known solid angle. Occlusions to these patches may be combined and represented as some patch fraction for which the radiant characteristics are defined by the dominant occlusion. By solving for radiant ex...
Article
This paper describes alternative methods for predicting surface irradiance in the urban context. In this the focus is on means of accounting for the effects of nearby obstructions on reducing direct sky radiation and on contributing reflected radiation. The first two methods involve abstracting the urban skyline into an effective canyon using isotr...
Article
The ability to map annual irradiation onto the urban fabric can be a powerful tool for identifying areas in which solar energy may potentially be utilised, as well as where some means of protection may be required to limit solar exposure. However, producing such output from hourly simulations, or some statistical subset of sun hours, is computation...
Article
This paper describes the development of the underlying methodology of a solar energy planning (SEP) system for energy advisers and policy makers. The methodology predicts the baseline energy consumption of domestic properties and determines the potential for reducing this using the three key solar technologies of passive solar design, solar water h...
Article
This paper describes a new software application for analysing climate data. It is argued that the produced graphical charts can be useful concept stage design tools in their own right. In describing the software this paper presents a review of climate analysis techniques. It is hoped that this review will be of use to the architectural science stud...
Article
A quasi-automatic system has been developed to monitor the energy and environmental performance of a new university learning resource centre. The centre is a THERMIE demonstration project. Monitoring has concentrated on global performance indicators, to describe envelope and environmental provision effectiveness; Micro-performance indicators, to de...
Article
Full-text available
The effects of urban structures on the atmosphere are studied using mesoscale models having a resolution ranging from a few meters to a few kilometers. Because of such a coarse resolution additional urban parameterizations are required to simulate the effects of the subgrid scales (buildings and canyons). This is accomplished using an Urban Canopy...
Article
Around three quarters of global resource consumption takes place in urban settlements, with corresponding adverse environmental consequences. According to population forecasts this situation will be exacerbated during the coming years. It is therefore imperative that we understand how to design less resource intensive urban settlements. To this end...
Article
In this paper we briefly describe three alternative techniques for modelling solar radiation in the urban context. These include the use of: (i) simple morphological parameters as indicators of radiation availability, (ii) a ray-tracing program in conjunction with a cumulative sky radiance distribution model for accurate calculation of annual incid...

Projects

Projects (2)
Project
The hub of our activity is the Leverhulme Research Programme Grant Sustaining urban habitats: an interdisciplinary approach. The ambitious aim of this project is to transform our understanding of how sustainable cities, and by extension our species, can be. Our objectives in achieving this aim are to: - Confront and understand the complex interrelated and competing factors influencing urban sustainability. - Holistically define, measure and model urban sustainability. Identify pathways to transition developed cities and accommodate growth in developing cities in minimally unsustainable ways. - Define policy and governance structures to implement these pathways in practice.
Project
To analyse and define patterns of the human behaviour in outdoors, in terms of activities, body postures, use of furniture, time of permanence, demographic characteristics and adaptive actions. To identify the relationship between the observed patterns of behaviour and the thermal environment. To identify the influence of multiple environmental factors in the behaviour of people, in order to predict the variability of the behaviour in certain conditions.