Heriot-Watt University Dubai Campus


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Heriot-Watt University, Dubai Campus used the IES Virtual Environment (IESVE) to model its energy use intensity (EUI) and recommend savings.

Key Facts

  • Model calibrated within 5% variance
  • Used IES LEED Credit Analysis tool, a feature of the VE-Navigator for LEED v4, to determine the potential O+M credits
  • University awarded five star KHDA rating and named Best University in ME by Forbes

Heriot-Watt University, Dubai Campus opened in 2005 and is situated in Dubai International Academic City. It has established itself as a centre of excellence for learning and teaching, renowned for world-class education and the value and impact of its contribution to the local economy and society. 

From September 2018 - April 2019, the university undertook an energy efficiency study for this campus, using the IESVE to model its EUI and recommended savings. The project group comprised of two undergraduate Architectural Engineering students, Akshaya Sankaran and Rinku David, mentored by the faculty team of Dr Hassam Chaudhry and Dr Evangelia Topriska. The objectives of the study comprised of namely (1) Level 2 Audit of the Campus Building; (2) performance gap analysis between the IES model and the building data and (3) recommendations on energy savings and its compliance with LEED O+M pre-requisites and credits.

In order to calibrate the model, an EUI comparison was carried out with the building’s energy data, which resulted in a good agreement of 5% variance. Energy saving measures via retrofit options were proposed on the building’s active services, while user behaviour on-site was carried out to improve the model accuracy. In order to understand the impact of this, the team used the IES LEED Credit Analysis tool, a feature of the VE-Navigator for LEED v4, to determine the potential O+M credits post-retrofits. Overall, the study proved to be very informative, creating awareness among the students, staff and the facilities team on the performance of the Heriot-Watt building.

The University was recently awarded the highest standing of the Knowledge and Human Development Authority’s (KHDA) five-star rating. This rating is a hallmark for quality education in Dubai. It was also recognised by Forbes Middle East Higher Education Awards as Best University in the Middle East. The University is building on its success in the region to date, putting students and staff at the heart of everything it does.

“IESVE has been an integral part of our Architectural Engineering teaching programme at Heriot-Watt University and is used both as a teaching and a research tool by the staff and students. We used our Dubai Campus building as a living lab to look at it from an energy consumption point-of-view and using the powerful simulation platform of IESVE were able to perform an EUI assessment of the building and provided advice to our facilities and management teams on implementing certain savings measures.”

Dr Hassam Chaudhry
Director of Studies (Dubai) Architectural Engineering, Heriot-Watt University, Dubai, UAE



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