Possibilities of using thermal mass in buildings to save energy, cut power consumption peaks and increase the thermal comfort

University dissertation from Division of Building Materials, LTH, Lund University

Abstract: The aim of this project was to generate knowledge to enable us to take advantage of heat storage in heavy building structures with regard to as energy savings, better thermal indoor climate, and reduced peak powers. This could include buildings that can function without energy input during cold periods, buildings that give a robust indoor climate without installed cooling, and buildings with good thermal comfort also in case of higher outdoor temperatures resulting from global warming. To reach this aim calculation models that take thermal mass into account have been developed and investigated and the thermal properties of concrete - the most common thermally heavy building material have been explored. Reduced peak powers is probably the most important advantage in the future as it can give both environmental effects (less peak power needed) and reduce the size of the energy supply systems (both at the energy supplier and at each building).