Date of Award

Spring 2015

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME)


Mechanical Engineering

First Advisor

Jun Chen

Second Advisor

Qingyan Chen

Third Advisor

Panagiota Karava

Committee Chair

Jun Chen

Committee Co-Chair

Qingyan Chen

Committee Member 1

Panagiota Karava


The convective heat transfer coefficient (CHTC) is an important parameter to evaluate the efficiency of building-integrated photovoltaic/Thermal (PV/T) system and the energy exchange within the turbulent atmospheric boundary layer. Reynolds-average Navier-Stokes approach has been frequently used to predict the CHTC at the surface of low rise roof but incapable of predicting transient behavior of separation, reattachment and recirculation both on the windward and leeward surface. However, Large Eddy Simulation approach (LES) could provide accurate flow field and temperature field around the low rise building. ^ The current study uses Large Eddy Simulation with Smagorinsky-Lily model and the Shear Stress Transport k-omega turbulence model to predict CHTC on low rise buildings with plan dimension of 4.2 m by 6 m, a 3 m eaves height with a 30 degree roof slope in the atmospheric boundary layer, with the results validated by experimental data. The results show LES prediction outweigh RANS approach in the prediction of CHTC and flow separation both on windward and leeward surfaces. In addition, an array of low-rise buildings with inclined roof are modeled to investigate CHTC in an urban environment with different plan area densities. This parameter represents different urban neighborhoods and it is used to characterize different flow regimes in the urban environment. This study could support future studies of CHTC at the surface of building in the urban environment.