Project scope

Buildings account for 40% of the EU’s energy consumption and offer the largest single opportunity for reducing energy needs. 

The EU Directive Energy Performance of Buildings (EPBD), which Member States are required to incorporate into national legislation, will ensure that building standards across Europe place a high emphasis on minimising energy consumption. In response to current needs and in anticipation of future legislation, there are therefore important market opportunities for the development of new products and systems using steel that will maintain and enhance the position of steel in construction.

ETHICS: Energy and Thermal Improvements for Construction in Steel R&D report

ArcelorMittal R&D contributed to this research and development project related to the thermal and energy performance of steel buildings. The ETHICS: Energy and Thermal Improvements for Construction in Steel report is concerned with evaluating, measuring, and improving the thermal and energy performance of steel-clad and steel framed buildings.

It addresses important building physics and performance issues using laboratory test methods, numerical calculations, and by measuring the ‘as built’ performance of real buildings.

What does the report include?

The report provides guidance for the optimum design of steel structures and envelope systems. There is a general lack of data in this area, in particular regarding air-tightness, that has been addressed within this project. The performance of energy efficient steel buildings and steel products in practice is shown.

During the preparation of this project relevant aspects were identified, which are listed below. They predefined the structure of the ETHICS project:

  • Air-tightness of buildings
  • Thermal performance of building envelopes (on site measurements and improvements)
  • Investigation of innovative techniques for improving thermal comfort
  • Measuring robust data on whole building performance
  • Design tools for overall energy assessments (heating, cooling, and lighting) focussing on predesign tools for use early in the design phase
  • Design guidance for energy and thermal improvements for whole buildings (residential and non-residential)

Finally, design guidance for commercial, industrial, and residential buildings was prepared and a design tool to assist in assessing and optimising whole building performance was established.

This design tool was checked with whole building measurements and results from standardised calculation tools.

Click to download the full report: ETHICS R&D report

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