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Robust and Reliable technology concepts and business models for triggering deep Renovation of Residential buildings in EU

Periodic Reporting for period 3 - 4RinEU (Robust and Reliable technology concepts and business models for triggering deep Renovation of Residential buildings in EU)

Reporting period: 2019-10-01 to 2021-06-30

Despite the low energy performance of the European building stock, the yearly renovation rate is quite low, and the choice to perform a building deep renovation is strongly affected by uncertainties in terms of costs and performance benefits in the building life cycle. The project 4RinEU faced these challenges, offering robust technology solutions and strategies to encourage the existing building stock transformation, fostering the use of renewable energies, and supporting the deep renovation decision process.
4RinEU overall renovation strategy minimizes risks and failures in design and implementation, defines a proper management of different stages of the deep renovation process - from the preliminary audit up to the end-of-life - and provides useful information on investment performance to the stakeholders.
The 4RinEU deep renovation strategy is based on 3 pillars: robust technologies enabling a cost reduction in the life cycle; usable methodologies encouraging players’ involvement and ensuring the reduction of the renovation time; reliable development approach to enhance the level of confidence of deep renovation investors.
Thanks to the high replication potential, 4RinEU results are expected to generate significant impacts: energy savings, reduction of renovation time and costs, improvement of occupants’ indoor environmental conditions, optimization of renewable energy use, and, ultimately, acceleration of European residential building renovation rate. This will bring a revitalization of the EU construction sector, making renovation easier, quicker, and more sustainable. The 4RinEU’s strategy is aimed to support investors from concept development to the operative phase to end-of-life management. The performed demonstration cases highlighted the chance to reduce energy demand, improve energy efficiency, and finally, reduce construction waste.
In the last months, technology solutions and related implementation and supporting methodologies have been completed, and deep renovation packages have been finalized. For the demo-cases, the 4RinEU technologies have been prototyped, tested, and released.
All expected results have been completed, offering important inputs for the demo cases' renovation process .
- Cost optimal energy audit approach for a structured collection of information in the preliminary stage before renovation, as well as measurement & verification strategy for the assessment of the actual performance after renovation
- A Prefabricated Multifunctional Façade system to cut the construction time while renovating the building envelope;
- An Adaptive ceiling fan control algorithm to reduce cooling demand,
- Early RENo, a tool aimed at optimizing the harvesting of renewable sourcesof energy:
- The Plug and Play Energy Hub for enhancing the efficiency of hot water distribution
- The Sensible Building Data Handler (SBDH), an application for collecting and publishing data related to building features and performances
- Strategies to approach the end of life process of building components already in the design phase
A full performance characterization of the 4RinEU technologies gathered in the deep renovation packages has been completed, and the influence on the 4RinEU performance indicators (related to energy, comfort, cost, time, environmental impact) for the residential archetypes in the six EU geo-clusters has been assessed.
The cost-effectiveness rating tool, was used to compare different options in the analyzed contexts.
In terms of demonstration activities, the work on the Norwegian demo-case was completed between June and August 2018, in the Netherlands between July-October 2020, in Spain between October 2020 and April 2021 while in Italy the work was finalized in winter 2020. The deep renovation processes were completed with the installation of post-monitoring infrastructure and data collection systems for further elaboration and comparison with pre-renovation conditions.
The exploitation activities were mostly focused on characterizing the value proposition of the expected results (ERs and a number of prospective business models were found based on the application of 4RinEU solutions, which demonstrated substantial benefits in terms of energy efficiency).
The project partners collaborated in the dissemination and promotion of 4RinEU outputs by publishing scientific and popularized articles, by participating in conferences and events and by providing contents for 4RinEU communication channels and materials The newsletter and social media channels, in particular, have been heavily used to engage with 4RinEU community and networks, also establishing links and collaborations with other research projects in the same field.
A MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) has been developed to spread 4RinEU method and lessons learnt among academics and professionals. in addition, several communication and dissemination activities were organized and performed, such as the release of various videos, including time-lapse videos showing the construction works in three demo cases, animated videos explaining 4RinEU concept and video/virtual tours of the demo cases in local languages. Finally, 4RinEU methodology and the results achieved in the demo cases are well explained to a broader audiences by means of two booklets that address respectively investors and a general public.
The project focused on residential buildings, which make up the majority of the European stock, and have the most complicated ownership structure. 4RinEU offers a collection of deep renovation solutions made up of both innovative and standard technologies. Energy savings, environmental impact, user comfort, construction duration, and costs in the life cycle of such deep renovation packages can all be optimized based on diverse boundary conditions.
The project's novelty is based on a systemic approach that includes a high level of prefabrication and standardization of renovation solutions.
4RinEU knowledge-based approach has a high replication potential which allows it to make a tangible contribution to the transformation of the European building stock. The project results are expected to stimulate the growth of the construction sector thanks to the creation of new opportunities (and the required skills) in the fields of industrialization and digitalization.
Additional career opportunities exist that require ICT skills in order to manage BIM (Building Information Modelling) procedures as well as to implement, secure, and maintain digital technologies in buildings.
Moreover, 4RinEU dealt with three key industries: (a) manufacturing and electronic devices; (b) software solutions for the building industry; and (c) wooden and timber construction. During the project, the activities of such market sectors were observed. Some of the results such as the prefabricated timber facades will have an effective market penetration and will be easily integrated in the renovation solutions.
Throughout the project, 4RinEU solutions have proven to be acceptable for all building typologies and ownerships. Multi-dwelling buildings - controlled by major enterprises or collective bodies - are more likely to benefit from 4RinEU outcomes due to their dimensions, characteristics, and more centralized decision-making processes.
4RinEU Logo
4RinEU Norwegian demo - before and after the renovation
4RinEU Prefabricated facade prototype in the calorimeter (Eurac laboratories)
4RinEU ceiling fan algorithm visual chart
4RinEU audit app - screenshot
4RinEU Plug and Play Energy Hub