Preprint has been published in a journal as an article
DOI of the published article
Preprint / Version 1

The restoration of severely damaged churches – Implications and opportunities on cultural heritage conservation, thermal comfort and energy efficiency




cultural heritage conservation, dynamic simulation, energy efficiency, Historic church, HVAC systems, microclimatic monitoring


Indoor microclimate and energy performance analyses of historic buildings require tailored methodologies, because of their complexities, e.g. presence of artworks, lack of documents or project data and employed structure and materials. Given such difficulties, there are a few interdisciplinary methodologies, capable of carrying out multi-objective analyses for this kind of buildings, and they are often based on in-situ monitoring that, however, may not be able to predict the effects deriving from different conceivable technologies and control strategies. In this work, an interdisciplinary methodology is employed for evaluating cultural heritage conservation conditions, occupants ‘thermal comfort and energy performance of a specific historic building category, such as churches, on the basis of experimental and numerical approach. The methodology was applied to the case study of an ancient Italian church, recently restored following the earthquake that hit L’Aquila in 2009. After the refurbishment of the church, the statistical analysis of temperature and relative humidity experimental data allowed to observe that the conservation conditions of artistic heritage just restored may be non-correct, due to remarkable thermo-hygrometric fluctuations of the indoor microclimate. Therefore, starting from the current condition of absence of HVAC system, calibrated dynamic simulation models of the church allowed to hypothesize different technological solutions able to control the indoor microclimate and to evaluate the effects on artworks preservation, thermal comfort, and energy performance. The results of the multi-scenario analysis showed that suitable conservation conditions (PIs > 90%) and thermal comfort can be obtained by employing a complex heating/cooling and humidification/dehumidification system which determines a significant increase in energy consumption.


Download data is not yet available.