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Assessment of the Entropy of Spatial and Time Distributions of Rooms Daylighting: A Possible Tool for a Sustainable Design

Original scientific paper

Journal of Sustainable Development of Energy, Water and Environment Systems
Volume 3, Issue 4, December 2015, pp 425-435
DOI: https://doi.org/10.13044/j.sdewes.2015.03.0032
Alessandra Galatioto , Marco Beccali
DEIM-Dipartimento dell’Energia dell’Ingegneria dell’informazione e dei Modelli matematici, Università degli Studi di Palermo, Viale delle Sicenze, bldg 9, 90128 Palermo, Italy


The indoor visual comfort of subjects faced with indoor ambient lighting varies with the position of the subject and is not constant over time. Average performance indexes, such as the mean value of Daylight Factor and Daylight Autonomy, are commonly used to analyse lighting distribution. These indexes, however, don’t properly take into account either the spatial or the time distribution of values affecting the non-uniformity of environmental lighting. Indeed, these are limited to the definition of a mean value or to the assessment of time availability of daylighting. This paper examines spatial and temporal non-uniformities in indoor lighting as possible causes of discomfort for occupants. The goal is to propose and verify possible supplementary tools to integrate traditional methods of evaluating ambient indoor lighting. Use of the entropy theory with a probabilistic approach can help to obtain more detailed information about the environment. The authors have developed a case study of several sample environments and have analysed the relationships between lighting parameters and typical indices of information theory. Results show that this approach could be a useful way for predicting possible indoor visual comfort issues and for developing a preliminary assessment to a sustainable building design.

Keywords: Information theory, Visual comfort, Daylight factor, Daylight autonomy, Lecture halls.

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