Visualising urban energy use: The potential value of remote sensing & LiDAR data in urban design and energy planning

Nashwan Dawood, Tracey Crosbie, Martin Carpenter, Michael Crilly

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Abstract

LiDAR (light detection and ranging) is an optical remote-sensing technique that uses laser light to densely sample surfaces, producing highly accurate measurements. It is primarily used in airborne laser mapping applications. However it offers a huge potential for improving the data input available for modelling urban energy systems and visualising urban carbon emissions. This paper explores this potential and highlights some of the limitations of the information that can be obtained from LiDAR data and how these limitations can be ameliorated. To do so it presents an example of the use of LiDAR data and aerial imagery to provide input data for building geometry and building physics models to develop an energy model of a mixed-use inner urban area in the North East of England. The work presented highlights the significance of data accuracy for the assessment of heat-loss parameters, orientation, shading and renewable energy micro-generation; and the limitations of remotely sensed data and how these can be ameliorated using a combination of open-source property data, such as building age, occupancy, tenure and existing stakeholder data sets, including building services and measured energy performance. The paper concludes that there are significant benefits in the use of LiDAR data for improved accuracy in, and visualization of, urban energy use and carbon emission calculations. However it also highlights that further work is required to reduce the data manipulation required if the potential of Lidar data is to be fully exploited to inform urban energy modeling.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Event14th International Conference on Construction Applications of Virtual Reality - Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
Duration: 16 Nov 201418 Nov 2014
Conference number: 14

Conference

Conference14th International Conference on Construction Applications of Virtual Reality
Abbreviated titleCONVR 2014
CountryUnited Arab Emirates
CitySharjah
Period16/11/1418/11/14

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    Dawood, N., Crosbie, T., Carpenter, M., & Crilly, M. (2014). Visualising urban energy use: The potential value of remote sensing & LiDAR data in urban design and energy planning. Paper presented at 14th International Conference on Construction Applications of Virtual Reality, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.