Representation of thermal energy in the design process
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Architecture.
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The goal of thermal design is to go beyond the comfort zone. In spatial design architects don't just look up square footage requirements and then draw a rectangle that satisfies the givens. There must be an interpretation. The requirements will be met. but there will be many other layers added. What is needed is a positive statement of thermal conditions that will support the architecture. An attempt must be made to actively design thermal delight rather than just hope that it happens. This thesis proposes a method in which thermal qualities are presented as opportunities to strengthen and enrich architectural meaning and experience. Representation of the variables of human comfort and pleasure can establish a thermal order that can be communicated just as conventional methods represent structural and spatial qualities. This method of generating and recording a thermal order consists of a qualitative and project specific set of thermal intentions that can be added to ASHRAE laboratory derived standards. Once established, this thermal order in conjunction with standard energy analysis tools becomes a part of one synthesis. To do this, the thesis will develop a general method and explore its use in a design project. In the present situation architects have the most advanced, efficient-low-impact technologies and powerful precise analytical tools ever available to the profession. The employment of these technologies requires a balanced attitude that values a human spirit as well as cost and efficiency. The use of energy-efficient technology needs to be considered phenomenologically. Good architecture respects mind, body, and all the senses. The material mass of a concrete environment at 68°F has a greater capacity to draw heat from a person than a 68°F environment of wood. The experience of the space becomes more than just visual or tactile, It is capable of changing the physical condition of the human body. This physical interaction with the environment is a essential part of architecture. The hypothesis is that through representation during the design process, an integral link betwe~n quantitative energy requirements and qualitative aspects of architectural meaning can be attained by the making of a thermal order. The objective is to find ways in which thermal energy issues and qualitative aspects of the design process can inform and support one another The project is a Public Pool for the city of Boston. The Public Pool is a building type that requires an extreme range of thermal conditions, a cultural presence, and a strong attitude about the interaction of the human body in architectural space.
Thesis (M. Arch.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Architecture, 1995.Includes bibliographical references (p. 95-97).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Architecture.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology