Energy in the Build Environment

  • looptijd: 2006 - 2015
  • locatie: Eindhoven,
  • functie: Energiebewustzijn verhogen, meer flex
Energy in the Build Environment
We examine the correct composition of the system and test materials, components and complete systems. This enables us to determine whether products comply with energy performance standards and Solar hallmark.

The Energy in the Build Environment (EBE) research aims to contribute to the transition to a built environment that is highly energy efficient, has a very low environmental impact, is affordable, supports economic development and improves the quality of life for people.

Build Environment Goals

Concepts for constructing, managing, renovating and maintaining buildings and neighbourhoods that will demonstrably boost environmental performance, shorten building and construction time, improve the quality for users and lower the total costs over the entire lifecycle.

System integration will play a decisive role here.

Green environment

The built environment is responsible for significant use of final energy (62%) and is a major source of greenhouse gas emissions (55%).

Achieving environmental goals, including climate change mitigation, requires comprehensive methodologies to accurately assess the impacts from this sector.

  • Research to date focuses on either individual buildings or on the urban level (e.g., metropolitan regions).
  • Robust and accurate methodologies have been developed to quantify environmental impacts at both scales.
  • While methodologies overlap between the building and urban levels, assessment remains largely confined within each scale.
    • At the building level, research focuses on materials, architectural design, operational systems, structural systems, construction, and analysis methods.
    • At the urban scale, urban form, density, transportation, infrastructure, consumption, and analysis methods are the main research focuses.
  • The paper presents the major findings at each scale. The work then argues for an expanded analysis framework to account for the interplay between the building and city level captured through a new impact category: induced impacts.
  • This new framework is necessary to address actual patterns of construction (new buildings or retrofits within existing cities) and to quantify currently missing impacts.
  • Based on the findings, a new methodology to capture induced impacts in the built environment is outlined.
  • Finally, practical and policy implications are discussed. Inclusion of induced impacts is critical to achieve environmental objectives within the building sector and beyond.

Partners: Enexis, TU Eindhoven, TU Delft, TNO


Energy in the Build Environment

Seasonal thermal storage

Seasonal buffers

We considered factors including the heat storage potential, costs, heat exchange rate and efficiency for several seasonal buffers. Aquifers emerged as the best option. But in future we expect much of thermochemical storage, with capacities some ten times greater than water. For the time being, the high temperatures involved are an obstacle to greenhouse horticulture application.

Suitable technologies

Heat storage technologies suitable now for greenhouse horticulture are:

  • aquifers,
  • deep aquifers,
  • climbing frame buffers,
  • Gaasboxx heat buffers,
  • shallow ground heat exchangers,
  • deep ground heat exchangers, and unencapsulated and
  • encapsulated phase-change materials.

The study findings are reported in ‘Alternatives for seasonal storage in greenhouse horticulture’. The TNO report also presents a multistep plan for growers to determine the most suitable buffer technology.


Egon Janssen MSC
T. 088 866 34 73

Thermal Solar Energy

How can you manufacture products that can make optimum use of the sun, are reliable, safe and durable?

TNO advises on the efficient development of sustainable solar-thermal systems. Our substantial knowledge is founded on the tens of systems we have helped develop and tested. We examine the correct composition of the system and test materials, components and complete systems. This enables us to determine whether products comply with energy performance standards and Solar hallmark.

We undertake activities in:

  • Calculation models for collectors
  • Storage vessels for solar boilers
  • Solar combi-systems and swimming pools
  • Thermo-optical tests
  • Indoor and outdoor collector tests
  • Indoor and outdoor solar boiler tests
  • Solar combi tests


Henk Oversloot BSC
T. 088 866 35 12

E2B (Energy Efficient Buildings)

Prof. dr. Olaf Adan MSC

  • Thermochemical heat storage
  • Energy storage
  • Energy efficiency in the built environment
  • Materials technology
  • HORIZON2020

T. 088 866 31 55

Performance guarantee: Air conditioning correctly tuned

As many as 70% of Airco installed systems underperform, which means needlessly high energy consumption. TNO studies the performance of these systems in use. We also investigate and advise on performance monitoring.

The components that regulate the climate in a building collectively form the air-conditioning system. Today’s requirements on energy and comfort are making these systems ever more complex.

Cooling systems, installations with heat pumps, underground energy storage, intelligent ventilation and ingenious heat recovery are becoming commonplace.

Besides comfort, energy consumption and safety aspects, such as legionnaire’s disease, are important design factors. As well as the right choice of equipment, system coordination and adjustment are part of the equation.

Nonetheless, almost three quarters of air-conditioning systems have disappointing performance, with excessive energy consumption and unsatisfactory comfort. TNO has the knowledge and the models needed to assess installation performance. Based on the assessment results we advise on the conceptual choices in design, commissioning, monitoring, and – last but not least – maintenance.


IR Leo Hendriksen
T. 088 866 22 01

TU Eindhoven, faculteit bouwkunde

  Wim Zeiler    040 2473714