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The PHAETHON Centre of Excellence (CoE) at the University of Cyprus would like to invite you to an Open Lecture on “Modelling and Design of Smart Resilient Net-Zero Energy Buildings and Communities” by Professor Andreas K. Athienitis, an internationally recognised and awarded academic, innovator, and leader in smart net-zero energy solar buildings.


This presentation discusses the role of systematic modelling and early-stage design decisions of advanced solar buildings and communities. Building designs are optimized to capture solar energy through building-integrated solar systems for the simultaneous production of electricity and heat, optimally designed windows for capturing passive solar heat gains and daylight, and efficient thermal and electrical energy storage. Exemplary Canadian case studies of net-zero energy buildings and solar communities are used to provide expert insight into accelerating the adoption and enhancement of such designs towards the goal of a decarbonized and resilient built environment. A key challenge is to achieve optimal integration with a smart grid with dynamic pricing schemes for electricity. Results from case study buildings are presented with emphasis on their optimal design, operation, and development of flexibility in their load profiles for grid interaction, particularly the Varennes Library, a smart solar net-zero energy institutional building completed in Canada in 2016 which is being monitored and studied. Finally, lessons learned for the design and development of carbon-neutral resilient communities in Canada are discussed. A current example is given on the conceptual design of a new net-zero energy building cluster for the Hellenic Community of Greater Montreal that includes building-integrated photovoltaic/thermal systems, thermal and battery energy storage and smart electric vehicle charging stations.


Professor Dr. Andreas K. Athienitis

Prof. Dr. Andreas K. Athienitis is a Professor of Building Engineering at Concordia University. He is the Director of the Centre for Zero Energy Building Studies that he founded with his colleagues at Concordia University. He holds the Concordia University Research Chair in Solar Energy and a NSERC Alliance Hydro-Quebec Research Chair.  He is internationally recognized and a leader in smart net-zero energy solar buildings – a Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Engineering, Fellow of International Building Performance Simulation Association (IBPSA) and Fellow of American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning (ASHRAE).  He led as Principal Investigator the NSERC Smart Net-zero Energy Buildings Strategic Research Network and the NSERC Solar Buildings Research Network (total budget $20 M) with over 30 researchers from 15 Canadian Universities and about 30 industry and public sector partners. He was profiled as one of 25 top innovators in Québec by Actualité Magazine. He has received several awards, including the NSERC- ADRIQ Partnerships Award in 2012. He has published over 300 refereed papers, including eight that received best paper awards, and several books. He played a leading role in the conception and realization of several award-winning innovative buildings such as the Varennes net-zero energy Library, EcoTerra House and his own award-winning solar home. He has supervised over 100 graduate students 16 of whom have become professors around the world. He currently Chairs the Canadian Academy of Engineering “Roadmap to Resilient, Ultra-Low Energy Built Environment with Deep Integration of Renewables”. In 2022-23 he led as Scientific Director the successful Concordia University CFREF proposal for $123M on “Electrification of Resilient and Decarbonized Communities (Volt-Age)” (2023-30) and now Chairs its Scientific Committee and leads Theme 1 on the built environment.


17:30 - 19:30 EEST


Room LRC012, Learning Resource Centre – Library “Stelios Ioannou” – University of Cyprus
Panepistimiou 1, Aglantzia
Nicosia, 2109
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