KB6006 - Building Thermal & Visual Analysis

What will I learn on this module?

You will learn about human physiology related to the nature of heat, sound, and light and how theory relates to the procedures adopted for the design of thermal systems and daylighting within buildings. You will also learn about the provision of ventilation in the reduction of air borne contaminants and about the science of light, vision and acoustics in respect of the built environment.
Techniques to optimise the buildings performance, and thus lower its carbon emissions, will be explained and discussed in lectures. You will also become familiar with industry standard software tools for assessing and improving building energy performance through daylight simulations and dynamic thermal analysis. The role of these software tools for improving building performance and for proving compliance with Building Regulations will be addressed.

How will I learn on this module?

You will learn through a series of interactive lectures supported by IT workshop activities. Lecture periods will be used to convey the core information and theoretical principles as well as providing opportunities for solving problems. This is designed to enable you to apply the theory gained from the lectures, in applied situations, or to have discussions based around the recommended reading, to build an understanding about the practical application of the theory. IT workshops will be used to develop knowledge and confidence in the use of industry recognised dynamic analysis software.
Directed study is designed to further your understanding and confidence. Independent learning supports both coursework tasks. Research related to the legislative control of energy associated with the key topic areas, will enhance your knowledge base.
This module runs alongside, and is designed to complement, the ‘Investigative Project’ module which you will also undertake at Level 6. The tuition and guidance for building thermal modelling and analysis work links directly to the ‘Investigative Project’ and enables transference of knowledge across modules. In addition to the IT workshop sessions additional guidance and clarification will be provided digitally.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Support will include feedback from tutors during seminars, lectures and IT workshops. In addition, tutors will use the University’s Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) to provide electronic support and materials. The University’s VLE offers remote access to materials and aids for reinforcing your learning. Support will also be provided by tutors in the use of appropriate software.
To support the efficiency of your study the online reading list will frequently link directly to online resources and to resources in the University library.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team – http://library.northumbria.ac.uk/readinglists)

What will I be expected to achieve?

You will be able to:

Knowledge & Understanding:
MLO1 Use thermal analysis software to interegate and improve the thermal performance of a virtual building model.
MLO2 Use manual and software calculation to examine and improve the daylight performance of spaces.
MLO3 Demonstrate your ablity to utilize dynamic simulation software to develop and improve the thermal and visual performance of a virtual building model making use of passive design techniques where appropriate.

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
MLO4 Contrast the predicted performance of a virtual building model against benchmarks and regulatory standards.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
MLO5 Discuss how the use of dynamic thermal simulation software is able to contribute to the low carbon requirements of society today, whilst also ensuring that human comfort in the built environment is not compromised.

How will I be assessed?

The assessment will be by coursework that will assess your knowledge and understanding in the key areas of the subject which are needed for the development of your analysis skills. The coursework tasks are designed to assess all Module Learning Outcomes. These will be weighted at 30% (MLO’s 1,2) and 70% (MLO’s 3,4,5) respectively.

Formative assessment will be through problem solving tasks in the lecture and IT workshop sessions and as part your directed learning. The rationale for the problem-solving tasks is to support your learning by the application of manual calculation and analysis techniques to specific criteria. The aim is to broaden and deepen your understanding of the theoretical and practical aspects of the subject.
Formative feedback shall be delivered verbally to you during the interactive lectures and IT workshop sessions. Written feedback is provided upon return of the coursework, with feedback from your first task supporting your skill development prior to submission of your second task.





Module abstract

Employers are looking for skilled design engineers who can work as individuals and as members of a team in designing energy efficient systems, which also produce comfortable and sustainable buildings through analysis of performance, initially through system modelling.
The ‘Building Thermal and Visual Analysis’ module will give you an understanding of the science and analysis techniques necessary to design low energy and potentially zero carbon buildings. We will address thermal comfort, ventilation provision, room acoustics and visual performance, in our considerations of how to move towards a low carbon built environment. This module presents a comprehensive and detailed consideration of the theory and application, through use of simulation software, of the comfort and design parameters required for a thermally and visually successful design solution. You will additionally learn how to improve the acoustic performance of spacesand how to assess your design solutions from an acoustic perspective.
This module will offer an opportunity for you to consider theory alongside practical application. You will also engage with research outputs/ case study material as part of your research-rich learning.
Assessment is by two coursework tasks. Formative feedback is provided in seminar problem solving sessions and IT workshops. Supportive individual feedback will be provided for each assessment which will identify areas of merit and offer guidance for future development.

Course info

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years part-time

Department Mechanical and Construction Engineering

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Fee Information

Module Information

All information on this course page is accurate at the time of viewing.

Our Campus based courses starting in 2022 and 2023 will be delivered on-campus with supporting online learning content. We continue to monitor government and local authority guidance in relation to Covid-19 and we are ready and able to adjust the delivery of our education accordingly to ensure the health and safety of our students and staff.

On-campus contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with any additional restrictions, which may be imposed by the Government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors. This could potentially mean increased or fully online delivery, should such restrictions on in-person contact time be required.


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