Ventilation performance prediction for buildings: A method overview and recent applications

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

766 Citations (Scopus)


This paper presented an overview of the tools used to predict ventilation performance in buildings. The tools reviewed were analytical models, empirical models, small-scale experimental models, full-scale experimental models, multizone network models, zonal models, and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) models. This review found that the analytical and empirical models had made minimal contributions to the research literature in the past year. The small- and full-scale experimental models were mainly used to generate data to validate numerical models. The multizone models were improving, and they were the main tool for predicting ventilation performance in an entire building. The zonal models had limited applications and could be replaced by the coarse-grid fluid dynamics models. The CFD models were most popular and contributed to 70 percent of the literature found in this review. Considerable efforts were still made to seek more reliable and accurate models. It has been a trend to improve their performance by coupling CFD with other building simulation models. The applications of CFD models were mainly for studying indoor air quality, natural ventilation, and stratified ventilation as they were difficult to be predicted by other models.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)848-858
Number of pages11
JournalBuilding and Environment
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2009


  • Analytical
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD)
  • Empirical
  • Environmental measurements
  • Full scale
  • Multizone
  • Numerical simulations
  • Small scale
  • Zonal

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Civil and Structural Engineering
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Building and Construction


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