A Rational Exergy Management Model to Curb CO2 Emissions in the Exergy-Aware Built Environments of the Future
Sammanfattning: This thesis puts forth the means of a strategic approach to address a persistent problem in the energy system and in this way, to transition the built environment to a future state that is more exergy-aware to curb CO2 emissions. Such a vision is made possible by the six-fold contributions of the research work: I) An analytical model is developed, which for the first time, formulates the CO2 emissions that are compounded in the energy system as a function of the systematic failures to match the supply and demand of exergy. This model is namely the Rational Exergy Management Model or REMM. II) REMM is then applied to analyze the pathways in which it is possible to lead the built environment into addressing structural overshoots in its exergy supply to curb CO2 emissions. The cases that embody these pathways are also analyzed over a base case, including cases for sustainable heating and cooling. III) New tools are designed to augment decision-making and exemplify a paradigm shift in the more rational usage of exergy to curb CO2 emissions. These include a scenario-based analysis tool, new options for CO2 wedges, and a multi-fold solution space for CO2 mitigation strategies based on REMM. IV) The concept of a net-zero exergy building (NZEXB) is developed and related to REMM strategies as the building block of an exergy-aware energy system. The target of a NZEXB is further supported by key design principles, which address shortcomings in state-of-the-art net-zero design. V) A premier building that deployed the key design principles to integrate building technology in an innovative, exergy-aware design and received LEED Platinum is analyzed on the basis of the NZEXB target. The results validate that this building boosts net self-sufficiency and curbs compound CO2 emissions, which are then presented in a proposed scheme to benchmark and/or label future NZEXBs. VI) Based on the scalability of the best-practices of the NZEXB ready building, the means to realize a smarter energy system that has exergy-aware relations in each aspect of the value chain to curb CO2 emissions are discussed. This includes a target for such a network at the community level, namely a net-zero exergy community (NZEXC). As a whole, the results of the thesis indicate that the strategic approach as provided by REMM and the NZEXB target of the research work has the potential to steer the speed and direction of societal action to curb CO2 emissions. The thesis concludes with a roadmap that represents a cyclical series of actions that may be scaled-up at various levels of the built environment in a transition to be in better balance with the Planet.
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