Balancing comfort and indoor air quality in high-riser buildings for social housing in Kuala Lumpur : from regulations to construction

Mohd Sahabuddin, Mohd Firrdhaus Bin and Gonzalez-Longo, Cristina (2019) Balancing comfort and indoor air quality in high-riser buildings for social housing in Kuala Lumpur : from regulations to construction. In: 51th AiCARR International Conference Venice, 2019-02-20 - 2019-02-22, San Servolo.

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Large cities such as Kuala Lumpur are facing significant environmental challenges concerning air quality and energy efficiency, but their undergoing major construction programs of social housing are not addressing these problems in full. Indoor environ-mental conditions should be taken into consideration while designing these buildings so that they could achieve indoor comfort and air quality as well as the subsequent reduc-tion in consumption of energy and resources. Increasing pollution levels and dated build-ing standards are two of the key issues to be taken on board to allow for a more appro-priate design. Natural ventilation should be promoted but allowing the outside air enter-ing the indoor spaces is obviously permitting also hot and polluted air in. Our research started with a detailed analysis of the existing building regulations in Malaysia and cur-rent design practice in social housing in Kuala Lumpur. Two campaigns of fieldwork have been carried out to measure and assess the indoor comfort as well as the external and internal air quality in recently completed high-rise social housing buildings in Kuala Lumpur, part of the large People’s Housing Program (PPR). In order to address the find-ings from the fieldwork and assessment, the ‘Dynamic-Hybrid Air Permeable Ceiling’ (DHAPC) system, combining dynamic insulation in the ceiling compartment with sever-al ventilation systems, has been developed and tested. The experiments tried to identify the best option for the configuration of the ventilation in the DHAPC considering the in-door space compartments, either fully passive, hybrid or fully mechanical. Several po-rous materials were tested in the DHAPC compartment, in order to measure the required air temperature, humidity, PM2.5 and PM10 in the indoor space. These experiments suggested that the ventilation configuration of hybrid-positive (F-B) and hybrid negative (B-F) are the best options for reducing polluted air and indoor discomfort, achieving a significant reduction of air temperature, humidity and particles, in particular with lower air speed.