• The Effects of Adaptive Shading and the Selective Reflector Light Shelf on Office Building Energy Efficiency and Daylight Performance in Hot Arid Regions

      Chalfoun, Nader; Abboushi, Belal Khalid (The University of Arizona., 2013)
      Highly glazed facades have been increasingly built for aesthetics, to achieve green buildings ratings, and to maximize daylight admission. In general, when the window area increases, building energy consumption increases. The objective of this thesis is to provide architects and engineers with a method to increase window area, attain daylight benefits, improve indoor environmental quality, and enhance connectivity to outdoors without increasing the building energy consumption. Adaptive shading was utilized to control solar heat gain and improve daylight performance. Additionally, this research proposed a new type of light shelves, Solar Reflector Light Shelf (SRL), which helps improve daylight while reducing heat gain. COMFEN 4.1 and Energy Plus software were used to simulate different system combinations and options, and to evaluate their performance based on monthly energy consumption, illuminance, luminance, and DGI levels.
    • Implementing Regional Responsiveness: Architectural Inspiration from the American Southwest

      Chalfoun, Nader; Maxwell, D. C.; Moeller, Colby; Reid, J. Jefferson; Holmlund, Jim; Chalfoun, Nader (The University of Arizona., 2012)
      This work advocates the implementation of the theory of Regionally Responsive architecture into the curriculum of architectural education; combining: (1) Increased awareness of historic architecture and regional treasures. (2) Understanding and applying the theory of Critical Regionalism in a regional context (3) Understanding and applying the basics of passive design strategies in response to climate (4) Understanding and applying the use of the most contemporary quantitative analytical tools (including various measuring apparatuses, computer simulations, wind tunnels, and daylight simulators) The goal is to integrate these four concepts into all sectors of architectural instruction to provide a lens of Regional Responsiveness to inform the student’s design work and professional paradigms. The laboratory for this work is the American Southwest and the prehistoric ruins. The concepts, however, are broad enough for incorporation into any region for any time period.
    • Effect of Daylight Application on the Thermal Performa Iraqi Traditional Vernacula Residential Buildings

      Chalfoun, Nader; Mandilawi, Asma Sulaiman Hasan (The University of Arizona., 2012)
      This study includes three stages: the first stage is an analysis, documentation, index through comparison different traditional vernacular buildings (houses) in three cities in Iraqi provinces: Baghdad, Arbil, and the Marshes in Nasiryah province. The study compares data collection through photography and sketches the environmental aspects of the different houses as they respond to the climate, material, construction methods, and passive system. The second stage is an analysis for the daylight strategies of two of the previous regions, Baghdad and Marshes. The study will document all the windows details, and that includes window area, window area compared to the wall area and to the floor area, window treatments and ground and wall reflection. The third stage is analysis for the daylight parameters in Baghdad region only. The study includes visual comfort bench mark: Intensity, distribution, glare, shading, and control (Human intervention/automatic). The analyses documentation of the daylight parameters is going to be through graphic diagrams and sketches. A guideline will be developed based on the analysis and finding from previous sections, and by submitting a model for the analyses purposes. A thorough and professional paper will be delivered to provide proper documentation of the process and it findings.
    • Location-Responsive Design in the Mixed-Use High-Rise Typology

      Mosey, Grant Norman (The University of Arizona., 2012)
      This paper investigates how mixed-use high-rises respond to their sites, both climatically and otherwise. It seeks to make recommendations to improve the site responsiveness of tall, mixed-use buildings. Finally, it offers a case study by designing two buildings with identical programs for different sites.
    • Exposed Memory: Weathering of Regional Architecture

      Domin, Christopher; Benninger, Cole Harris; Domin, Christopher; Reimer, Paul; Weiner, Paul (The University of Arizona., 2010)
      Weathering introduces a language of durability and change throughout time. Architecture and its materials are constituents of place, as is the way they weather and age. The intent of this research is to analyze regional weathering characteristics specific to the American Southwest as a reflection of a sense of belonging that evolves over time.
    • Thermal [MU]: A Class of Performative Masonry Units

      Gindlesparger, Matthew Eugene; Clifford, Dale; Malo, Alvaro; Vollen, Jason (The University of Arizona., 2008)
      The concrete masonry unit (CMU) has been a standard in the building industry for the last century, widely utilized for its durability, modular assembly, and its’ relative ease of handling. While there are a variety of sizes, the general form of the CMU has remained unchanged; the same module can be used anywhere in the world. The goal of this project is to increase the aesthetic and thermodynamic performance of CMUs by re-investigating the interior and exterior surface geometries of the unit with the intent of extracting greater thermodynamic performance. This greater performance in turn correlates to user comfort and more ecologically responsible building practices. I propose a modular system of construction derived from the relationship between material, fabrication, and assembly, and results in a unit able to thermodynamically respond to daily and seasonal variations in solar condition. The application for this model is wall system that tempers the environment of the Sonoran desert, where we witness great contrasts in solar conditions throughout the year. Geometry and materiality become points of interaction with the environment, as the Thermal Masonry Unit (Thermal[MU]) provides the capacity to absorb, store, and/or dissipate energy. The Thermal[MU] utilizes these attributes by acting as a filter between environment and user: providing shade and a thermal barrier in the summer and collecting/distributing the heat gain in the winter months. This passive thermal control is important because it makes a more economical use of material properties and forming principles and establishes a direct physical relationship between the user and the environment.
    • The Role of Identity in Local Environments: Formalization of Tucson's Identity

      Romero, Juan Bustelo; Jeffery, R. Brooks; Frederickson, Mark; Doxtater, Dennis (The University of Arizona., 2008)
      Due to several factors such as the excess of the urban sprawl or low density construction, Tucson suffers from certain homogeneity that makes difficult to discern its particular essence. Conversely, we may find a considerable number of cities‐Las Vegas, New York, San Francisco, Rome or Venice among many others‐ that boast about its acknowledged identity. Key investigation will uncover the factors that generate some of these unique identities. Subsequently these assumptions are then compiled in a design agenda that will generate a design project applied to Tucson. Beyond the search of a plain answer the research produces a method of investigation that provides the capacity for designing urban environments with the physical essential qualities that define the identity of a particular place. The research is based on direct observation, aerial and ground level photography and synthesis maps of several case studies.
    • Learning Through A Green Environment: A Research Thesis on Sustainable Early Childhood Learning Spaces

      Chassé, Elise S.; Chalfoun, Nader; Michal, Richard; Moeller, Colby; Scott, Elizabeth (The University of Arizona., 2008)
      This thesis describes the development of early learning spaces which teach sustainable practices to children in a method that can be applied at a global level. Sustainability, for the purpose of this research, is defined as the idea of living throughout a lifetime with the conscious and unconscious understanding that natural resources are not unlimited and need to be respected and conserved through personal effort. Through a detailed analysis of both early childhood education methods and innovative sustainable design practices, a specific design matrix was created based on current standards set by LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) for New Construction v.2.2 © by USGBC, and from this matrix and casestudy analysis, 19 learning components were established. From research on two teaching methods, the Reggio Emilia and the Montessori teaching styles, it has been established that the environment surrounding the children acts as a pedagogical tool by engaging natural curiosity and demonstrating natural behavioral limits. Through the analysis of early childhood education methods, a learning paradigm outlining five key ways in which design relates to the way young children learn has been developed. Young children learn through five basic methods; tactile learning, spatial relationship awareness, connectivity of the child with others and the physical world, freedom of exploration, and the conceptualization of human comfort. Innovative sustainable design practices identified in this research include passive and active energy and water conservation, utilizing alternative energy resources, and incorporating recycled and non-toxic materials into the design components. Specific aspects of sustainability were chosen because they are easily adaptable into the lives and learning strategies of young children. By incorporating these strategies into a child’s daily life by exposing the function of sustainable techniques, the space creates a passive education approach. The learning paradigm developed from early education research is applied to current sustainable strategies, using LEED™ as an organization tool. The matrix was designed to show a clear connection between the way children learn and specific sustainable strategies. By relating each applicable credit to ways in which children learn, a set of guidelines has been established for incorporating energy efficiency and sustainability into a child’s life experiences. Four casestudies were chosen which demonstrate that educational spaces are convincing arenas for the process of integrating sustainable design features into the daily lives of children. Van Eyck’s Orphanage emphasizes the use of materiality and the idea of scale in spaces designed for children. The Argonne Child Development Center focuses on sustainable features of energy consumption and healthy resource utilization. Davidson Elementary School includes similar features but adds emphasis to the mutual relationship among school, immediate physical environment and the larger community. The Civano Community School utilizes sustainable strategies to teach children about environmental issues and awareness. From the sustainable learning matrix, and from analysis of case studies, which utilize key learning techniques and sustainable strategies, final design components have been developed and classified into easy to understand diagrams. The intent of these component diagrams was to provide a reference guide for future early childhood education design projects. The purpose of this research was to develop key spatial components for specific sustainable education spaces based on common ways young children learn and universal ideas of sustainability, which can be altered using site and climate specific techniques to be integrated into communities on a global scale. This document is meant as a guideline for other designers to use when considering the development of spaces to teach young children about energy efficiency and sustainability. The 19 key spatial components established in this document combine the ideas behind early childhood learning methods with multiple sustainable strategies, to provide learning spaces which bring sustainability to a level that children can understand. By encouraging sustainable choices and awareness at a young age, children will grow up with the understanding that it is their responsibility to preserve the environment and positively influence our future.
    • Live/Work as an Urban Design Strategy

      Kelliher, Daniel James; San Martin, Ignacio; Domin, Christopher; Medlin, Larry (The University of Arizona., 2008)
    • Restriking the Vitruvian Balance in Residential Architecture through the Incorporation of Sustainable and Regionally Appropriate Design Fundamentals: Designing, Building and Operating a Passive Solar Residence in the Sonoran Desert

      Michael, Richard J; Chalfoun, Nader; Brittain, Richard; Matter, Fred (The University of Arizona., 2007)
      The purpose of this paper is to analyze the impacts on architectural form, function, and appearance of a case study residence in which the concepts of sustainability and sustainable architecture were incorporated as one of the primary design fundamentals. The case study residence located in the arid southwestern United States is an approximately 2,068 square foot home built for a family of five with four bedrooms and two bathrooms and a separate attached guest bedroom and bath. This paper will provide an overview and analysis of the residence in terms of: 1) the original project values and goals as represented by the design and computer energy modeling process and 2) the project results as captured by the qualities (structural and aesthetic) of the final constructed physical form and its post-occupancy quantitative performance (functional, spatial, and resource conservation) as measured by the home’s over two years of monitoring and use.
    • Preserving Cultural Landscapes: A Cross-Cultural Analysis

      Jain, Priya (The University of Arizona., 2007)
      In the past two decades, a variety of policy frameworks have been designed worldwide for the protection and stewardship of cultural landscapes. While the National Park Service (NPS) in United States has developed a system of preparing Cultural Landscape Inventories and Reports (CLI & CLR) to address sites under their administration, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has its own criteria for designating cultural landscapes within an international forum. This document attempts to outline and critically analyze these two approaches with the aim of exploring their applicability to the Indian milieu. The ultimate aim of the research is to attempt the formulation of a methodological framework for the implementation of cultural landscape preservation in India. This is achieved by first exploring endemic Indian notions about time, space, nature and culture, followed by the proposal of a few key concepts or broad recommendations that should, in my opinion, guide any cultural landscape preservation efforts in the Indian context. This is supported by a discussion of a few best practices at sites both in India and worldwide where appropriate solutions were sought. Lessons from these as well as the analysis of the NPS and UNESCO models together give rise to a methodological framework form initiating cultural landscape preservation in India.
    • The Environmental Aesthetic Appreciation of Cultural Landscapes

      Gorski, Andrew David; Jeffery, R. Brooks; Macmillan Johnson, Lauri; Jeffery, R. Brooks; Macmillan Johnson, Lauri (The University of Arizona., 2007)
      In recent decades the canon of environmental aesthetics has expanded beyond its primary concern of understanding what is beautiful in the fine arts to the appreciation of natural and cultural landscapes. Corresponding with society's growing interest in conservation, environmental aesthetics has emerged as relevant to many conservation discussions. The preservation and interpretation of cultural landscapes is complicated by resources that are in a constant state of change. Traditional cultural landscape preservation practices have had mixed results. A focus on interpretation rather than preservation is generally considered a strategy for improving cultural landscape practices. Applying theories developed in the field of environmental aesthetics to cultural landscapes may lead to principles helpful to their preservation and interpretation. In this study, an environmental aesthetic framework is developed and applied to the Canoa Ranch, a historic property south of Tucson, Arizona, to evaluate the potential of using environmental aesthetics in appreciation of cultural landscapes.
    • Connecting With Nature: Building a Spirit of Sustainability in Architectural Design

      Preston, John C.; Jeffery, R. Brooks; Doxtater, Dennis; Hardin, Mary (The University of Arizona., 2007)
      Alarm about the state of the environment, particularly Global Climate Change with its many implications, has led to a new awareness and action toward creating a sustainable future. By the United Nations’ definition, a sustainable future is one that meets the needs of the present while protecting the environment and providing for the needs of the future. With this new awareness, technologies and design approaches that support the concept of sustainability have become popular. Less attention has been focused on the important potential experiential and aesthetic benefits that come from a stronger appreciation and relationship to nature. This wide-ranging study broadly analyzes the concept of sustainability as it applies to aspects of planning, landscape architecture and more specifically in regard to architectural design. The research of literature and projects of noted writers, designers and buildings associated with sustainability is used to find common attributes for creating a character, or spirit. The research examines the additional factors that create a character of sustainability in environments. Seven common key indicators important to the creation of sustainable character are derived from the research. This character happens when a holistic design approach is taken, and the interaction between humans, nature and the designed physical environment is emphasized as an integral part of the process. These factors may be used to analyze projects for their relationship to sustainability in aesthetic and experiential terms, as well as providing criteria for future designs.
    • Ecological Design Principles For A Mixed-Use Development In Tucson, Arizona

      D'Arcy, Gerard (The University of Arizona., 2006)
      This report explores the process of designing sustainable mixed-use communities in Tucson, Arizona. It is intended as a primer for the ecological design of large buildings in a hot/arid climate region. It combines and expands on the concepts and relationships between sustainability and mixed-use development in Tucson and provides this information in order to elevate the discussion on these issues as directly related to future development of the Tucson urban core. A particular site in downtown Tucson is subject to a design proposal that responds to the city’s desire for this type of development while working in line with the current city models and ordinances. Furthermore, the final design attempts to meet the objectives for optimizing opportunities regarding the implementation of ecological design principles such as natural ventilation, natural day lighting and water conservation. The major motivation behind the following report is two fold; It illustrates the environmental condition that exists in Tucson today (physical and political) and outlines an approach to design that seeks to ensure that future generations enjoy continued access to the world’s natural resources.
    • Outdoor Thermal Comfort Analysis for the Dhond Residence in GOA, India

      Poonam, Anaokar Deepak; Chalfoun, Nader; Hammann, Ralph; Stoltz, Ron (The University of Arizona., 2005)
      The hypothesis of this study is to create a thermally viable microclimate for a residential outdoor space in the hot humid climate of the state of Goa in India with innovative and intelligent use of landscaping materials and shading conditions to control radiation, direct heat, air movements and moisture. This research focuses on the optimization of the performance of outdoor spaces using computer simulations. Outdoor spaces form an important part of houses in the hot-humid region as the humidity levels are high and natural air currents are the best option. A typical house in the tropical region would be defined by three types of spaces- indoor, outdoors and a combination of the indoor and the outdoor consisting of generally of a verandah or a loggia. This thesis focuses on the “indoor- outdoor” spaces where the breezes could be used to cool the space as well as the use of non–radiative materials so as to lower the temperature in the outdoor spaces and restore conditions to the thermal comfort zone. This study is aimed towards the integration of architecture with landscape architecture to achieve thermal comfort for outdoor spaces and to demonstrate how these can be optimized for better comfort for the residential structures in the tropical zone.
    • New Student Housing in Downtown Tucson

      JIN, LEI; San Martin, Ignacio; Domin, Christopher; Medlin, Larry (The University of Arizona., 2004)
    • Visual Comfort in Transitional Spaces

      Araji, Mohamad Tarek; Chalfoun, Nader; Jeffery, R. Brooks; Jabbour, Ghassan (The University of Arizona., 2004)
      The study emphasizes changing light conditions in architectural spaces as a major factor on human eye adaptation, which represents a potential case for a visual shock. This visual shock is experienced when occupants encounter a sudden field of light whose intensity is above or below the limit of human eye adaptable range. To examine this condition, a new methodology is developed and outlined. It identifies the visual shock within transitional spaces and allows architects to investigate strategies that influence visual comfort. The physiological field of vision analysis is used to first critique, then to adjust, and finally to interpret scenes within transitional spaces. The methodology begins by using a 180° angle fish-eye lens camera to capture 3-D photographs along a selected pedestrian pathway. The photographs are overlaid by a “field of view” diagram to deduct areas obstructed by human facial features (eyebrows, cheeks, and nose). Area weighted percentages of the net view profile is then calculated using an overlay hemispherical radial grid. These percentages represent the cut-off vision (0%), the one-eye vision (12.5%), the peripheral vision (25%), and the central vision (50%). Image metamorphosis is done by the aid of the Adobe Photoshop software to restrict the image to four monochromatic contrasts of shade. Parallel to photographs, actual light intensity readings are collected and calibrated to each assigned contrast on the images. To illustrate the methodology, a case of a person experiencing an extreme discomfort by walking in the direction of a blinding sunlight source has been chosen and investigated. 3-D Computer modeling is then adopted to investigate the different architectural daylight solutions as suggested by the modified design and predicts a visual comfort. This method provides a successful tool for investigating light in transitional spaces as well as contributes to enhancing pedestrian awareness of their surrounding environment and clarity of visual information.
    • Palestinians; From Village Peasants to Camp Refugees: Analogies and Disparities in the Social Use of Space

      Maraqa, Hania Nabil (The University of Arizona., 2004)
      This study compares the social use of space in the Palestinian village around the beginning of the 20th century to that in the Palestinian refugee camp in Jordan around them beginning of the 21st century. It examines the transformation from small-scale egalitarian social practices in the village of Deir Ghassanah to external discourses controlled by large-scale institutional powers in al-Baq a Refugee Camp. It analyzes the ways through which refugees have been able to reinvent their village life after being forcefully relocated in spaces that may not respond to their ritual practices and integrative social system but created by external institutions. Transformations in leadership structure, ownership patterns, and religiosity in both cases will be traced to establish a dialectical framework between the symbolic interpretation and social use of the two spaces.