Note: This content is accessible to all versions of every browser. However, this browser does not seem to support current Web standards, preventing the display of our site's design details.


Importance of Occupancy Information for Building Climate Control


F. Oldewurtel, D. Sturzenegger, M. Morari

Applied Energy, vol. 101, pp. 521532

This paper investigates the potential of using occupancy information to realize a more energy efficient building climate control. The study focuses on Swiss office buildings equipped with Integrated Room Automation (IRA), i.e. the integrated control of Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning (HVAC) as well as lighting and blind positioning of a building zone or room. To evaluate the energy savings potential, different types of occupancy information are used in a Model Predictive Control (MPC) framework, which is well-suited for this study due to its ability to readily include occupancy information in the control. An MPC controller, which controls the building based on a standard fixed occupancy schedule, is used as a benchmark. The energy use of this benchmark is compared with three other control strategies: first, the same MPC controller which uses the same schedule for control as the benchmark, but turns off the lighting in case of (an instantaneous measurement of) vacancy; second, the same MPC controller which uses the same schedule as the benchmark for control, but turns off lighting and ventilation in case of (an instantaneous measurement of) vacancy; and third, the same MPC controller as the benchmark but using a perfect prediction about the upcoming occupancy. This comparison is carried out for different buildings, HVAC systems, seasons and occupancy patterns in order to determine their influence on the energy savings potential.


Type of Publication:


M. Morari

File Download:

Request a copy of this publication.
(Uses JavaScript)
% Autogenerated BibTeX entry
@Article { OldStu:2013:IFA_4202,
    author={F. Oldewurtel and D. Sturzenegger and M. Morari},
    title={{Importance of Occupancy Information for Building Climate
    journal={Applied Energy},
Permanent link