Numerical analysis of diffuse ceiling ventilation and its integration with a radiant ceiling system

Chen Zhang, Per Kvols Heiselberg, Qingyan Chen, Michal Pomianowski

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

37 Citations (Scopus)


A novel system combining diffuse ceiling ventilation and radiant ceiling was proposed recently, with the aim of providing energy efficient and comfort environment to office buildings. Designing of such a system is challenging because of complex interactions between the two subsystems and a large number of design parameters encountered in practice. This study aimed to develop a numerical model that can reliably predict the airflow and thermal performance of the integrated system during the design stage. The model was validated by experiments under different operating conditions. The validated model was further applied to evaluate the effects of different design parameters, including the U-value of the diffuse ceiling panel, plenum height, plenum depth, and inlet configuration. In the integrated system, diffuse ceiling separated the radiant ceiling from the rest of the room and consequently changed the energy efficiency of the radiant system. The simulated results demonstrated that using ceiling panel with a higher U-value can minimize this impact and make the system to cool down space efficiently. Low plenum height was beneficial to the energy efficiency, but aggravated the non-uniformity air distribution and further led to the draught problem in the occupied zone. This system was recommended to apply in the small offices instead of large, open spaces.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)203-218
Number of pages16
JournalBuilding Simulation
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2017


  • CFD
  • diffuse ceiling ventilation
  • energy efficiency
  • parametric study
  • radiant ceiling
  • thermal comfort

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Building and Construction
  • Energy (miscellaneous)


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