Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science


Mechanical Engineering


Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Kristen S. Cetin


The application of interior, dynamically-operated venetian blinds in commercial buildings has been widely considered a promising opportunity to simultaneously save lighting and heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) energy, utilize natural daylight, and maintain visual comfort for occupants. Research in recent years, however, has focused mostly on simulation-based efforts to assess the impact of dynamic venetian blinds on daylighting, occupant comfort, and energy performance. What is lacking is the insight from full-scale experimental testing data, and the use of this data to validate the simulation and model-based findings in terms of energy and economic savings. This study thus assesses the impact of dynamically-operated venetian blinds on overall lighting and HVAC energy saving based on full-scale experimental testing carried out in two parallel test rooms. One room acted as a baseline without any shading devices or lighting controls; the second room was equipped with dynamic venetian blinds and dimmable lighting. The dynamic shading and lighting were connected to the building’s Building Automation System (BAS) and testing was carried out using a multi-step control strategy in the spring and summer seasons. Energy data was collected from the lights, as well as from the variable air volume (VAV) terminal boxes in each room which are used to compute the energy consumed for space conditioning. Further, calibrated simulation is used to compute the annual energy saving potential of the system utilized. Finally, a life cycle cost analysis of the system is performed to determine the potential economic viability of the tested system in the existing built environment.

Copyright Owner

Niraj Kunwar



File Format


File Size

92 pages