The paper shows a comparative analysis of the performances of two typologies of solar assisted cooling systems for building applications. In particular, Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) methodology is applied to assess the energy and environmental impacts of solar-assisted, heat-driven chillers and conventional compression chillers driven by grid-connected and stand-alone photovoltaic configurations. LCA is applied in compliance with the international standards of ISO 14040. System boundaries are defined following a “cradle to grave” approach, taking into account all the life-cycle phases including the raw materials supply, the production of the components of the plant, the operation and maintenance, and the end-of-life. The operation step of the assessed systems is simulated with TRNSYS models. Two reference buildings are modeled for two different sites, Palermo (Italy) and Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), according to local practices and regulations. The building models are normalized to have the same peak cooling demand (12 kW). The results show that the assessed energy and environmental performances of the grid-connected systems are usually better than the others for both climates, while the manufacturing process of storages in the stand-alone configurations does not allow these solutions to be competitive yet. Furthermore, the impact of the high average national electricity conversion efficiency in Brazil on the results is analyzed and discussed.
Choosing by advantages, Energy production system design, Environment, Life Cycle Assessment, solar cooling.
Beccali, M. , Cellura, M. , Guarino, F. , Mistretta, M. & Longo, S. 2013, 'Eco-Desgin of Solar Driven Systems: A Performance Comparison Between the Italian and the Brazilian Context' In:, Formoso, C. T. & Tzortzopoulos, P., 21th Annual Conference of the International Group for Lean Construction. Fortaleza, Brazil, 31-2 Aug 2013. pp 915-924