Energy and Acoustic Performance Effects due to VAV Duct Design and Installation Practice Variations

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The energy efficiency and acoustic performance trends due to variations in the installation of ductwork after the variable air volume (VAV) unit are generally known, but the quantitative measure of those effects have not been documented through a comprehensive experiment. This study applied commonly found variations in ductwork installations in a full-scale experiment to determine the quantitative main effects of each installation variation. An orthogonal test matrix design of experiment was used so that each main effect was the mean main effect for that variation when exposed to all the other installation variations. It was found that for square diffusers, the energy required to distribute air post VAV unit could be more than doubled by variations in the installation. Sound levels were predicted to differ by nearly 16 dB for different installations at the same airflow rate. The main contribution of this research is that it provides quantitative results that can be used to make energy efficiency and sound-level reduction design and installation decisions and to predict the efficiency and sound levels of an installation.


Air ducts – Installation; Air ducts – Noise; Energy consumption; Variable air volume systems (Air conditioning)


Acoustics, Dynamics, and Controls | Energy Systems | Engineering | Mechanical Engineering


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