Hybrid System Design of Renewable Cooling and Heating for Buildings in Hot and Humid Climate

Project: Research

View graph of relations


The proposed study is to develop the hybrid use of more than one renewable energy (RE) sources for building cooling and heating, which covers air-conditioning, space heating and hot water supply. In conventional provision, the electricity-driven air-conditioning equipment is commonly applied. For space heating and hot water supply, diesel oil, gas and electricity are popular energy sources. From energy supply projection, fossil fuels will be still the major sources in the coming decades, unless there is vigorous use of alternative energy. The recent report of Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has highlighted the role of RE in climate change mitigation. But how can RE be widely used? Is it possible in the building sector?Although solar heating and cooling has been widely promoted, most of the demonstration projects are found in the temperate and cold climate regions, where the emphasis is found on heating rather than cooling. In recent years, “solar heating and cooling” has been gradually shifted to “renewable heating and cooling”, and the driving energy sources are expected to go beyond solar energy. However the cooling demand is not in priority and the holistic system design for cooling and heating is seldom touched. In this regard, renewable cooling and heating (RCH) is proposed for buildings in hot and humid climate. The Principal Investigator (PI) has developed different effective system designs of solar cooling for single-storey buildings. Since the roof collector area is limited, if the other RE sources can be jointly used, the application potential can be extended to the multi-storey buildings. In this study, the shallow geothermal energy is associated with the ground source heat pump, so that additional cooling power can be furnished upon solar cooling. In addition, biomass heating would be used as auxiliary heating for the heat-driven cooling equipment. As such, hybrid use of solar energy, geothermal energy and bioenergy forms the core idea of RCH in this proposal.In order to achieve RCH, various integrated system design strategies are raised by the PI in this study. Year-round dynamic simulation would be adopted to evaluate the effectiveness of various strategies for RCH. Based on the feasible strategies, an optimized system design of RCH will be formulated for buildings in hot and humid climate. Study of RCH application will be on both new and existing buildings with different functions. It is expected that the hybrid system design of RCH would contribute to mitigation of climate change and air pollution in the building sector.


Project number9041800
Grant typeECS
Effective start/end date1/01/1316/06/17