Re-addressing the Window: Environmental Performance of Adaptive Fenestrations for Indian Climate

Khan, S. 2020. Re-addressing the Window: Environmental Performance of Adaptive Fenestrations for Indian Climate. PhD thesis University of Westminster Architecture and Cities

TitleRe-addressing the Window: Environmental Performance of Adaptive Fenestrations for Indian Climate
TypePhD thesis
AuthorsKhan, S.
Abstract

The primary function of building fenestrations known to humankind is to provide daylight, fresh air and view. However, with the emergence of mechanical systems, the purpose of space heating and cooling, ventilation and lighting are widely fulfilled artificially. The comprehensive focus of this research is to investigate the role and evolution of windows to date, the factors that have influenced them, its effect on human psychology and their contribution in creating better living spaces. The Indian government’s scheme of constructing 20 million homes by 2022 and about 15% rise in the use of air conditioning per year in the urban and rural parts of India can be directly associated with the persistent shortage in electricity supply which has led to power cuts of about 16 hours per day in mostly the rural areas of the country and especially during the summer months (National Building Organization, 2016), (The Hindu, 2013; Wolfram, 2012). Hence, it is of specific importance to undertake this research to understand how windows have evolved and what their role in the future might be, especially in relation to design and the attainment of comfort. This research will contribute by portraying ‘window’ as an adaptive tool since they have the potential to create diversity, flexibility and social interaction on along with providing thermal and visual comfort for its users. This will be achieved by examining and readdressing passive design elements prevalent in the traditional Indian buildings, by documenting the current trend in window design and user preference, and by testing the documented windows through computational analysis to understand their impact on the thermal comfort in a modern residential unit setting. The final outcomes of this study that were achieved through fieldwork and performance analysis strongly demonstrated the significance of windows in improving the indoor thermal comfort. Moreover, the simulations ascertained that the contribution of windows was more substantial when they were a part of a holistic design intervene on that took into consideration on window design, building materials, building form and orientation, building techniques, climactic conditions, surrounding context and application of appropriate environmental controls.

KeywordsWindow systems, adaptive tool, building elements, natural ventilation, passive strategies
Year2020
File
File Access Level
Open (open metadata and files)
Publication dates
PublishedJan 2020

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Schiano-Phan, R., Lau, B., Pourel, D. and Khan, S. 2018. Spatial Delight and Environmental Performance of Modernist Architecture in London – Golden Lane Estate. Future Cities and Environment. 4 (1) 16. https://doi.org/10.5334/fce.47

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