A Fourier Series Model to Predict Hourly Heating and Cooling Energy Use in Commercial Buildings With Outdoor Temperature as the Only Weather Variable

[+] Author and Article Information
A. Dhar

Enron Corporation, 1400 Smith St., Houston, TX 77002

T. A. Reddy

Drexel University, Civil and Architectural Engineering Dept., Philadelphia, PA 19104

D. E. Claridge

Energy Systems Laboratory, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas

J. Sol. Energy Eng 121(1), 47-53 (Feb 01, 1999) (7 pages) doi:10.1115/1.2888142 History: Received September 01, 1995; Revised September 01, 1998; Online February 14, 2008


Accurate modeling of hourly heating and cooling energy use in commercial buildings can be achieved by a Generalized Fourier Series (GFS) approach involving weather variables such as dry-bulb temperature, specific humidity and horizontal solar flux. However, there are situations when only temperature data is available. The objective of this paper is to (i) describe development of a variant of the GFS approach which allows modeling both heating and cooling hourly energy use in commercial buildings with outdoor temperature as the only weather variable and (ii) illustrate its application with monitored hourly data from several buildings in Texas. It is found that the new Temperature based Fourier Series (TFS) approach (i) provides better approximation to heating energy use than the existing GFS approach, ((ii) can indirectly account for humidity and solar effects in the cooling energy use, (iii) offers physical insight into the operating pattern of a building HVAC system and (iv) can be used for diagnostic purposes.

Copyright © 1999 by The American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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