© 2024 EPFL / Purev

ICE lab welcomes a new PhD student Fariza Sabit

— Fariza Sabit joined the ICE lab in February 2024 as a Ph.D. student to advance research in personalized Energy Expenditure prediction. Enthusiastically, she recounts her personal background and experiences in Switzerland, highlighting her impression about both the ICE lab and the Smart Living Lab.

© 2023 Lyu

ICE lab welcomes a new postdoc Kun Lyu

— Kun Lyu joined the ICE lab in November 2023 to advance the research within the SWICE (Sustainable Well-being for the Individual and the Collectivity in the Energy transition) project.

Sunset on lake Geneva © 2023 Purev

ICE welcomes Uelun-Ujin Purev, a Swiss Government Scholarship holder

— ICE lab welcomes Uelun-Ujin Purev who joined the lab as a postdoc in September 2023.

iThCoM © 2023 EPFL / D. Licina

iThCoM project featured at the ENAC Research Day 2023

— The ENAC Research Day 2023 provided a platform for exploring cutting-edge research within ENAC and fostering collaboration, promoting academic excellence. PechaKucha talks featured interdisciplinary sustainability research, including the collaborative "iThCoM" project by ICE and VITA labs, showcasing expertise fusion for personalized comfort prediction, enhancing indoor climatization, and satisfaction with the built environment.

© 2023 EPFL / T. Messsina

Successful graduation of Dr. Arnab Chatterjee

— After devoting 4.5 years to his studies at EPFL, Arnab Chatterjee reached a pivotal moment in his academic journey as he successfully defended his PhD thesis. This significant accomplishment was marked by his public presentation at the Smart Living Lab on July 21, 2023. Among the attendees were Arnab's colleagues and supportive friends, who eagerly celebrated this remarkable milestone, recognizing the dedication and hard work that led to this achievement in his career.

© 2022 /Eunji Cho

Collaboration with Hanyang University: Eunji Cho at the ICE Lab

— Eunji Cho, a second-year PhD student from Hanyang University, embarked in Ocober’22 on a three-month exchange at the ICE lab. She was welcomed as part of the "Young Researchers’ Exchange Programme with South Korea" facilitated by a mobility grant supported by SERI's Bilateral Science and Technology Cooperation Programme.

Ryan Liao © 2023 EPFL

Successful Ph.D. graduation of Amirreza Heidari

— Amirreza Heidari successfully completed his Ph.D. studies at EPFL and shared his work with the public at Smart Living Lab on November 11th, 2022. His work "Reinforcement Learning for occupant-centric operation of building energy systems: Theoretical and experimental investigations" proposed a novel way of closing the gap between the building energy systems and occupants.

Annex 87 Expert meeting © J. Cho 2023

IEA EBC ANNEX 87 kick-off meeting in Denmark

— The first expert meeting of ANNEX 87 took place at the Technical University of Denmark (DTU) on 17-18 October 2022. As it was held in a hybrid mode, there were many online participants, but Dolaana Khovalyg and Ryan Liao from EPFL attended it in person.

Dr. Rahiminejad © 2023 Ryan Liao

The first Ph.D. graduate of the ICE lab – Dr. Rahiminejad

— A four-year-long Ph.D. journey of Mohammad Rahiminejad at EPFL culminated with his public presentation on 28 September 2022. He earned his Ph.D. degree in Mechanics with the work titled "Impact of ventilated air-space behind traditional (passive) and BIPV (active) façades on the thermo-hydrodynamic performance of building wall structures". 

ICE participated at the ENAC 20th Anniversary Exhibition © D. Khovalyg, EPFL 2022

The ICE lab's showcase at the 20th Anniversary Exhibition of ENAC

— Laboratory of Integrated Comfort Engineering (ICE) participated in the ENAC School's 20th Anniversary celebration by displaying their research works as part of the theme "Healthy Building & Urban Environments"

ARC-HEST © T. Delley 2022 EPFL

Second edition of ARC-HEST: Summer School 2022

— The 2nd edition of the Swiss-Korean Academic Exchange Programme ARC-HEST took place in two last weeks of August 2022. The international group of students, 15 from South Korea and 15 from Switzerland, was hosted in Fribourg along with accompanying professors from Seoul. 

Individuals display very different levels of thermal comfort under normal office conditions © iStock

One step closer to providing customized climate control in the office

— EPFL researchers have shown that people’s perception of office temperature can vary considerably. Personalized climate control could therefore help enhance workers’ comfort – and save energy at the same time.

Overview of the RL-based controller © Amirreza Heidari, 2022 EPFL

Smart building controls learn occupant behavior to reduce energy use

— Occupant behavior, a highly stochastic and complex phenomenon, is unique in each building and remains a challenge for energy-efficient operation of building systems. Current building controls, which rely on the hard-coded expert knowledge, either ignore or over-simplify the expert knowledge and follow an energy-intensive approach to ensure occupant comfort. Recent study by Amirreza Heidari, a PhD student at ICE co-supervised by Prof. François Maréchal from IPESE, indicates that Reinforcement Learning, an aritificial intelligence method, can enable building controls to learn and adapt to the occupant behavior and provide a significant energy reduction while preserving comfort and health of people. 

CHAOS visit of the ICE climatic chamber © D. Khovalyg, EPFL 2022

Princeton C.H.A.O.S. Lab's visit of ICE in Fribourg

— Prof. Forrest Meggers heading C.H.A.O.S. lab at Princeton University, USA, and Coleman Merchant from CHAOSense visited the ICE lab in Fribourg on June 30th, 2022. 

© 2022 EPFL

ICE at CLIMA 2022 conference with 6 contributions

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© 2022 EPFL

Routledge Handbook of Resilient Thermal Comfort is published

— Long awaited Routledge Hanbook of Resileint Thermal Comfort edited by Fergus Nicol, Hom Rijal and Susan Roaf is finally published. The ICE lab contributed two book chapters to answer the key questions "What is resilient comfort?" and "What are resilient buildings?"

@ ICE / 2022 EPFL

Re-naming: TEBEL becomes ICE

— The beginning of 2022 finds the lab re-branded with a new name. Thermal Engineering for the Built Environment Laboratory (TEBEL) transforms to Laboratory of Integrated Comfort Engineering (ICE) to better reflect an occupant-centered and integrated research approach of the lab.

Alexandre Mudry, Dolaana Khovalyg and Thomas Keller won the Best Paper Award for their research. © A.Herzog/EPFL

Multifunctional construction elements lower buildings' energy needs

— Engineers at EPFL have studied the use of construction slabs that serve both as structural building elements and floor heating systems. Made of composite materials, these slabs could deliver heating performance on par with conventional radiant heating but consume less energy.

Water monitoring under the bathroom sink © A. Heidari / 2021 EPFL

Occupant-centric hot water production based on Reinforcement Learning

— Should buildings learn our behavior? Amirreza Heidari gave a Smart Living Lab talk on December 15 on the application of Reinforcement Learning for hot water systems in buildings. 

© Dorit Aviv / UPenn 2021

Workshop on emerging low-energy cooling and ventilation solutions

— Assist. Prof. Dolaana Khovalyg was an invited panelist to the online workshop “Cooling, Climate Change, COVID” on December 1, 2021. 

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