Katharine van Someren attends SET International Conference on behalf of TSBE Centre

Kate’s  abstract entitled ‘Analysing the lighting performance gap between predicted and actual carbon dioxide emissions in academic classrooms’ and based on her research sponsored by the TSBE Centre and University of Reading was submitted to the 16th International Conference on Sustainable Energy Technologies (SET2017) and has been ACCEPTED for presentation. Kate will be presenting her paper in July this year. The attached image is one of the winning entries that Kate entered into the TSBE Centre Photographic Competition.


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RICS publish new research report on Smart Cities, Big Data and the Built Environment.

The interconnected agendas of smart cities, big data and open data, on the face of it, provide bold and exciting opportunities for built environment professionals. With a focus at the city level, this research examines the development of data platforms in the UK and internationally, and determines how professionals in the built environment can benefit from these data platforms.

The research identifies four key barriers to the development of big data projects in the built environment:

  • A lack of consistency in the definitions and measurement of built environment big data.
  • A low level of built environment sector business engagement.
  • The lack ofinteroperability between different varieties of datasets.
  • The present lack of a ‘bottom-up’, demand-focused approachto the smart cities agenda.

Please see: http://www.rics.org/uk/knowledge/research/research-reports/smart-cities-big-data-and-the-built-environment-whats-required/

where you can download a copy of the report.

Professor Tim Dixon

Director TSBE Centre

University of Reading


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TSBE Conference 27th June 2017

The TSBE Centre EngD conference will be on the 27th June this year, the themes will encompass all the area of the EPSRC funded Centre’s doctoral research : Environmental Engineering including Health & Wellbeing & Energy. The afternoon will be given over to Energy with presentations by Alice Gunn, Mitchell Curtis, Max Zangs, Ana Arguelles-Rodriguez,  who are PhD or EngD students & Anthony Simpson who is undertaking research on electric vehicles with Fleet Drive  this research is supported by the Knowledge Transfer Partnership . Fleet Drive will be demonstrating the electric vehicles after conference proceedings.

More on the TSBE Centre’s energy research can be found here TSBE Centre Website.

Image coutesy of: http://www.autoguide.com/manufacturer/tesla/2013-tesla-model-s-review-video-3546.html
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Ashley Evans from Google addresses TSBE Centre Research Engineers on 6th April

The TSBE Centre staff and students are looking forward to welcoming Ashley Evans from Google next week who will be giving a talk entitled:

Google’s Search for Renewable Energy 

Bio: Ash is a Project Lead in Google’s Global Infrastructure & Energy team. His current responsibilities include data centre capacity sourcing, site selection, utility infrastructure negotiations, as well as related business development activities, real-estate asset management, and renewable energy investments. He has been part of the global team strategising and achieving Google’s 1st 100% renewable energy goal. Ash joined Google in 2014, coming from a background in Architecture and Environmental Engineering working as a consultant across EMEA.


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Presentations from the 4th LV Workshop & Thames valley Chamber of Commerce Energy Seminar

We had another successful event! The 4th LV workshop and the Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce energy seminar were held at the university of Reading on the 1st and 2nd of March.  This joint event aimed to share recent developments in demand forecasting and energy storage control, and bring the academics and industry together for discussions and collaboration.

The first day presented a number of state-of-the-art modelling and forecasting techniques for the future smart home and grid as well as a fascinating review of how low carbon technologies will affect both the low voltage and national level. We saw how new technologies and human behaviour could can be incorporated into network/household models as well as how forecasts and modelling could be incorporated into networks solutions such as heating control and battery storage.

The second day presented on the role of energy storage from two perspectives: network support for Low Voltage networks and commercial applications. In the morning session presentations provided a unique insight into results from practical applications of energy storage, from DNO-owned units dealing with thermal and voltage constraints (with examples of symbiosis with Vehicle-to-Grid and Dynamic Line Rating) to domestic battery energy storage systems aimed at self-consumption of PV and assisting with the network support. In the afternoon session the participants of the seminar had been given a peak in to the future for energy storage from DNO and research perspective, and an essential money matters for the commercial application of energy storage from experts in energy storage consultancy and an experienced investor.

The summary of the presentations given during the 4th LV workshop and the TVCC seminar are given below:

4th LV workshop

In the continuation of the theme of the previous workshops and close links with the New Thames Valley Vision (NTVV) project, the 4th LV workshop aimed at the academics working on the applied research on demand forecasting techniques and energy storage control in the Low Voltage (LV) networks.

The first day was dedicated to forecasting techniques for power systems, starting with demand forecasts at the national level and then focusing on demand at the LV feeder and house level.

The keynote speaker for the first day, Dr Jeremy Caplin (National Grid), gave an informative and fascinating presentation on the state-of-art forecasting of the electricity demand at the national level, including an insight in to how weather and major events impact both, embedded renewable generation and demand.  Particularly, Jeremy noted that the impact from solar photovoltaics (PV) is becoming harder to predict: uptake of PV generation continues to grow but also the actual installed PV capacity have to be estimated.

Dr Stephen Haben (University of Oxford) and Dr Laura Hattam (University of reading) presented NTVV_LV_Data analytics on the forecasting techniques for demand and loading from Low Carbon Technologies at the LV level developed for the New Thames Valley Vision (NTVV) project. Stephen’s talk highlighted the complexity of forecasting at the household and the feeder level driven by the range of customer behaviours and the temporal range of the forecast. Laura’s talk focused on forecasting future scenarios for the uptake of Low Carbon Technologies (Electric Vehicles and PVs) in clusters and modelling the uncertainty of their output. NTVV_Forecating_Uptake_of_LCTs

Dr Stuart Galloway (University of Strathclyde) presented on the forecasting of demand for single buildings on LV network, focusing on the analysis of the errors and highlighting the inter- and intra-day correlation of errors. These methods were demonstrated on a number of non-residential buildings.

Dr Florian Ziel (University Duisburg-Essen) presented and compared several short-term forecasting techniques for LV feeders, focusing on how feeder size impacts the accuracy of the forecasts and the sensitivity of forecasts to temperature.

Dr Kavin Narasimhan (University of Surrey) presented Modelling_energy_use_in_households how concepts from social practice theory have been applied to agent-based modelling of energy demand at a household level. The concepts are based on three components of social practice (meaning, skill and material), linking the activities with energy usage and validating how the relationships between activities and energy usage change the over years.

Dr Richard Snape (De Montfort University) introduced the SWELL project and presented findings from the demand response trials based on control of electrical heating in response to demand and generation forecasts. The findings highlighted the effectiveness of the chosen demand response business model on benefits for the customers and how customers responded to the trial. Abstract:

“Recent work has highlighted the need for smarter and more localised management of electricity networks, with the UK National Infrastructure smart power report recommending that “Enabling the transition to more actively managed local networks should be a government priority. By Spring 2017 DECC and Ofgem should consult and set out how and under what timeframe this transition should best take place”

This talk presents an approach to managing local renewable generation and load, particularly legacy electrical heating (storage heater) load, in a community energy scheme.  It reports on a recently completed case study project which has installed equipment in 50 buildings to implement such a scheme and record data about usage and the success of local balancing, the community business model and smart controls in combination with resident interaction.  Finally, the talk describes a model incorporating learnings from the project which may be further used to investigate the replicability of this scheme in communities across the UK.”



The second day of the workshop focused on energy storage from two perspectives: energy storage for network support and commercial applications of energy storage (as part of the TVCC energy seminar).

The morning session aimed at the energy storage for the network support. The key note speaker for the session, Nigel Bessant (Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks), have set the scene for the network support session by presenting DNO’s perspective on the energy storage and gave a brief overview of existing innovation projects involving energy storage.

Dr Timur Yunusov (University of Reading), Gideon Evans and Josh Martin (Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks) presented NTVV_Energy_storage on the development and control of battery energy storage within the NTVV project. Gideon and Josh gave an overview of the project, focusing on the specification requirements for the Energy Storage and Management Units (ESMUs), learning points from the installation and commissioning of the units at the street level, and from the integration of control system into the existing IT environment. Timur focused on the automated control system for the ESMUs, providing the overview of the control methods and results from the trials of control methods on ESMUs installed on LV feeders.

Andreas Procopiou (University of Manchester) presented an overview of the challenges in PV rich LV networks and how actively managing residential PV and battery energy storage systems impacts the operation of PV-rich LV networks. Abstract:

“European countries have promoted through different incentives the use of residential-scale photovoltaic (PV) systems resulting in a significant number of installations in LV networks. However, since LV networks are traditionally designed to cope with demand without controllable elements, with higher PV penetration levels, technical problems such as voltage rise or thermal overload of assets are expected to occur. Indeed, distribution network operators (DNOs) are now required to either proceed with costly network reinforcements (e.g., upgrading transformers, conductors) or transit towards the active management of LV networks which can be an attractive and cost-effective alternative.

In this context, the industrial project “Active Management of LV Networks” funded by Électricité de France R&D and run by The University of Manchester was set to investigate the adoption of active network management techniques to tackle voltage and congestion issues. This talk will present the key findings from two techniques (1) the coordinated control of residential-scale PV systems adopting already embedded power control functions (e.g., Volt-Var, Volt-Watt) and (2) the control of residential-scale battery energy storage systems in a way that provides benefits to both customers (i.e., self-consumption) and DNO (i.e., voltage management). These innovative solutions that require limited network information and observability have the potential to increase the ability of LV networks to host residential-scale PV systems without the need of expensive and time consuming network reinforcements, paving the way for a cost-effective low carbon future.”

Dr David Greenwood (Newcastle University) presented Storage_in_LV on the recent developments in control techniques for LV networks from the Newcastle University, including results from field trials and laboratory experiments. Abstract:

“In electrical networks, Energy Storage can fulfil multiple functions across a range of voltage levels. The research in this presentation focusses on simulation and control of energy storage in low voltage distribution networks, enabling power flow management, voltage control, and integration of domestic photovoltaic systems. We investigate coordinated control of multiple energy storage systems, and of energy storage in conjunction with demand response. We describe methods for mass simulation of LV networks, and heuristic planning techniques to investigate the location and sizing of storage systems. Our results are validated through energy storage demonstration, carried out as part of the Customer Led Network Revolution project.”


Thames Valley Chambers of Commerce Energy Seminar

The TVCC seminar had a great combination of speakers, representing industry, academia and investors. Audience from the 4th LV workshop was joined by members of the TVCC and the representatives from industry interested in commercial applications of energy storage.

The first presentation was by Dr Ben Potter (University of Reading) on energy storage research highlights. Ben described recent developments in energy storage technologies and costs, followed by two examples of energy storage applications (reducing network connection costs and frequency response). Ben also highlighted that other key factors (i.e. control methods, security and forecasting) play an important role in ensuring that the application of energy storage is successful.

Nigel Bessant (Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks) presented  Lessons_learned_from_UKs_largest_commercial_grid_battery on the role of energy storage from DNO’s perspective, described the importance of energy storage performance and gave a couple of examples how energy storage could perform a key role in DNO to DSO transition.

Dr Matthew Rowe (DNV GL) gave an overview of energy storage on the global stage, highlighting the idea that energy storage could be seen as a disruptive technology with a potential to provide a wide range of applications.

Dr Marek Kubik (AES Corporation) presented Lessons_learned_from_UKs_largest_commercial_grid_battery on the frequency response application of energy storage at the Kilroot power station, which proven to be more effective than conventional plants in delivering frequency support.

Neal Kalita (Energy Locker) gave an insight from developer’s perspective into the investment process for energy storage, highlighting the key factors to be take into the account and the key stages in the process of decision making for the energy storage investment. Investment & Energy Storage


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Designing Healthy Homes seminar, Wednesday 29 March, University of Reading.

Designing Healthy Homes seminar, Wednesday 29 March

What then does it mean to have a ‘healthy’ home?

Colleagues are invited to attend ‘Designing Healthy Homes’, a multi-disciplinary seminar aiming to discuss the role of housing in the wider healthcare system. The seminar will be of particular interest to academics and practitioners involved in the design, construction and refurbishment of the homes of the future.

Homes play an important role in alleviating pressure on the health service, but are often framed in terms of illness-prevention rather than wellbeing-promotion. This ignores the more holistic concept of health as “a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being, not merely the absence of disease or infirmity” (WHO 1946).

In that context, what then does it mean to have a ‘healthy’ home and what consequence does this have on the planning, design and development of housing?

Chaired by Dr. Ian J. Ewart, Lecturer in Digital Technologies in the Built Environment, the seminar will bring together five expert speakers to explore how housing intersects with wider health provision and the practicalities of delivering ‘healthy’ homes.

The seminar takes place on Wednesday 29 March, 3.00pm – 6.00pm, at the Meadow Suite, Park House, Whiteknights Campus.

This event is free of charge, but registration is required before attending. To register please visit: designing-healthy-homes.eventbrite.co.uk.



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Updated version of Creating the Productive Workplace Places to Work Creatively Edited by Derek Clements-Croome

Professor Derek Clements-Croome works with the TSBE Centre, University of Reading,  projects in his area of expertise include:

Creating an intelligent building environment to enhance investment trader performance – Gary Middlehurst with Prof. Runming Yao & Prof. Derek Clements-Croome


Creating the Productive
Places to Work Creatively
Edited by Derek Clements-Croome
A new edition of a classic title, featuring updated and
additional material to reflect today’s competitive work
environments, contributed by a team of international
experts. Essential for anyone involved in the design,
management and use of work places, Creating the Productive
Workplace is a critical multidisciplinary review of the factors
affecting productivity, as well a practical solutions manual
for common problems and issues. Features over 100 black
and white illustrations.


Foreword Preface Part 1: Health, Well-Being and Productivity
Landscape 1. Effects of the Built Environment on Health and
Wellbeing Derek Clements-Croome 2. The Business Case for
Sustainable Healthy Buildings Derek Clements-Croome 3. The
Multi-Sensory Experience in Buildings Briony Turner, Derek
Clements-Croome, and Kay Pallaris 4. Pleasure and Joy, and their
Role in Human Life Michel Cabanac 5. User-Centred Workspace
Design: Applications of environmental psychology to space for
work Jacqueline Vischer 6. Change Makers: rethinking the
productive workplace through an art and design lens Jeremy
Myerson Part 2: Research Evidence 7. Lessons from Schools for
Productive Office Environments: the SIN model Peter Barrett 8.
Effects of Indoor Air Quality on Decision Making Usha Satish and
Piers MacNaughton 9. Workplace Productivity: Fatigue and
Satisfaction Shin-ichi Tanabe and Naoe Nishihara 10. Proving the
Productivity Benefits of Well-Designed Offices Nigel Oseland 11.
Optimising Wellbeing and Productivity through an Ergonomics
Based Approach Stephen Bowden 12. Lighting For Productive
Workplaces Jennifer Veitch 13. Intelligent workplaces Vivian
Loftness et al 14. Thermal and IAQ Effects on School and Office
Work Pawel Wargocki and David Wyon 15. Measuring the IEQ
Contribution to Productivity and Wellbeing Vyt Garnys, Travis Hale
and Adam Garnys Part 3: Experiential Evidence from Surveys and
Building Case Studies 16. A Visual Language of the Workplace
Peter Bacevice, Hannah Beveridge and Liz Burow 17. The People-
Building Interface: It’s a Two Way Street Judith Heerwagen, Kevin
Kampschroer, Bryan Steverson and Brian Gilligan 18. Workplace: A
Tool for Investment Kevin Reader 19. Productivity in Buildings: the
Killer Variables – twenty years on Adrian Leaman and Bill Bordass
20. Enjoy Work: A Case Study on Chiswick Park Jason Margrave,
Ron German and Kay Chaston 21. The Arup Experience of
Workplace Design Ann-Marie Aguilar, Vicki Lockhart, Mallory
Taub and Michael Stych 22. Achieving Holistic Sustainability:
considering wellness alongside resource use in buildings Jennifer
McArthur 23. Making the Economic Case for Good Design of
Workplaces Sarah Daly 24. Building Performance: the Value
Management Approach Part 4: Future Horizons 25. Stranger Than
We Can Imagine: the future of work and place in the 21st Century
Mark Eltringham 26. How to Prevent Todays Ergonomic Office
Problems in the Future Veerle Hermans 27. Future Landscapes
Despina Katsikakis 28. Coda Derek Clements-Croome

Hb: 978-1-138-96334-4 | £60.79


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Smart Cities, Big Data and the Built Environment: What’s Required?

University of Reading: School of Construction Management
& Engineering and School of Real Estate & Planning collaborate on RICS Smart Cities Report.

Written by: Professor Tim Dixon, Dr Jorn van de Wetering, Professor Martin Sexton, Dr Shu-Ling Lu, Dr Dan Williams, Dilek Ulutas Duman and Xueying Chen

Executive Summary Background We live in an increasingly urbanised world. Currently more than 50 per cent of the world’s population lives in cities, and this is set to grow to 70% by 2050 (UN, 2014). Recently we have seen a greater focus on information and communications technology (ICT) to argue the case for ‘smart cities’. This places a strong emphasis on an ICT-led and a ‘data-driven’ future, which also positions the development of new products, processes, organisational methods and markets at the heart of the continued ambition for sustainable urban economic growth. The interconnected agendas of smart cities, big data and open data, on the face of it, provide bold and exciting opportunities for the built environment professions, including RICS members. But, what in reality will those opportunities be, and what are the challenges? This research, conducted from 2015-2016, seeks to explore those questions and focuses on the city level. The aim of this research is to examine the scope for the development of data platforms at city level in the UK and internationally and to determine how the RICS and its members (and other built environment professions, including architects, planners and engineers) can benefit from these data platforms. Focusing on ‘big data’ and ‘open’ data relating to the built environment, the research examines: • The drivers and barriers for big data platforms at city level in the UK and internationally. • Key trends in the development and opening up of big data in cities. • The opportunities for client advice and the potential for RICS members to use big data creatively and innovatively to add value to their professional work. Using an institutional analysis approach, the research consisted of an online scoping survey of UK smart cities; four case studies in Bristol, Milton Keynes, Amsterdam and Taipei; and a UK expert workshop.

you can read more of the report here: http://www.rics.org/Global/RICS-Smart-Cities-Big-Data-REPORT-2017.pdf

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EngD vacancies

All Industrial Doctorate Centres advertise their current vacancies on the AEngD website, see link below:





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TSBE Students shortlisted at SET

TSBE EngD students shortlisted at SET Competition Westminster

EngD students Joshua Eadie and Katie McCausland presented posters on their research at the SET Competition at Westminster, and were pleased to be shortlisted.

The overall aim of STEM for BRITAIN is to encourage, support and promote Britain’s early-stage and early-career research scientists, engineers, technologists and mathematicians who are an essential part of continuing progress in and development of UK research and R&D. Read more here:http://www.setforbritain.org.uk/index.asp

Katie and Josh will also be talking about their posters at the Annual TSBE Conference to be held in June 2017.

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