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Performance analysis and comparison of data-driven models for predicting indoor temperature in multi-zone commercial building...

by Borui Cui, Piljae Im, Mahabir S Bhandari, Sangkeun M Lee
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Energy and Buildings
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Building thermal models, which characterize the properties of a building’s envelope and thermal mass, are essential for accurate indoor temperature and cooling/heating demand prediction. Because of their flexibility and ease of use, data-driven models are increasingly used. This study compared and analyzed the performance of gray-box (resistance-capacitance) and black-box (recurrent neural network) models for predicting indoor air temperature in a real multi-zone commercial building. The developed resistance-capacitance model served as a benchmark model for which full sets of temporal data and building information were used as inputs. The recurrent neural network models were trained and tested assuming various available types and amounts of temporal data and known building physical information to investigate the effects of data and information availability. Feature importance analysis was conducted to select the key variables for different prediction targets under different scenarios. This research provides guidance in selecting an appropriate building thermal response modeling method based on the measured data availability, building physical information, and application.