Introduction of the Research Institute in ACROSS

Research Institute for Building Environmental Design

The Challenge of Becoming Carbon Neutral in Houses and Buildings

Director : Prof. Shin-ichi TANABE

In the field of buildings including housing, which emit one-third of Japan’s CO2, we will conduct research on the impact of carbon neutrality not only on individual buildings but also on the community and society. We will also develop technologies for net zero energy houses and buildings that emphasize wellness such as comforthealth and productivity.

■Research themes

Researchers in the fields of architecture and electrical/mechanical engineering will work together to conduct research on housing, architecture, cities, and energy with the aim of achieving carbon neutrality by 2050.

In the field of building and housing, energy conservation has mainly been pursued by improving the performance of buildings and equipment. As information and communication technology (ICT), smart grids, AI, and the IoT are highly developed, it is urgent to study how to utilize digital technologies in the field of building and housing for energy conservation and effective use of renewable energy. It is also important to consider the impact of the energy demand of houses and buildings on the grid, the community, and society. Our unit will promote the following three types of research.

  1. (1) We will conduct research and development on the integration of electric power and construction to substantially reduce consumer energy consumption in the residential, business, and other sectors, which account for 34% of Japan's energy consumption; reduce peak power consumption; and introduce a large amount of renewable energy. For this purpose, we will conduct empirical research on net Zero Energy Buildings (ZEB) and net Zero Energy Housing (ZEH). We will also conduct a survey on the latest research, technology, and policy trends in Japan and overseas.

  2. (2) Simply optimizing homes and buildings to minimize energy consumption may compromise the livable environment for occupants. It is important to improve energy efficiency as well as wellness performance such as occupants’ comfort health and productivity. We will conduct research on architectural and environmental planning that flexibly responds to changes in working and living styles caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

  3. (3) Using smart grid and other simulators, we not only examine the energy-saving performance of ZEH/ZEB on a stand-alone basis, but also investigate energy issues as a whole, including the use of renewable energy and co-generation. From there, we propose solutions to problems at the regional and city levels. While considering the natural environment and social characteristics of the region, we will conduct research to support the use of renewable energy customized to the region as well as on carbon neutrality in the region and city according to the pattern of energy consumption based on various lifestyles. Furthermore, we will conduct research on behavioral change.

We will actively implement the results of our research in society together with our collaborating companies, and will actively make policy proposals on carbon neutrality based on scientific evidence.

Past research results can be found at researchmap (the site includes major publications thus far)

  • Waseda-Shibaura Building (ZEH), interior view
  • Kaise Town Hall, cross-sectional view

Project members

Director : Shin-ichi TANABE (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)

Director : Shin-ichi TANABE (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Yasuhiro HAYASHI (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Yoshiharu AMANO (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Nobuaki FURUYA (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Haruhiko GOTO (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Hiroto TAKAGUCHI (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Shinji WAKAO (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
Noboru MURATA (Professor, Faculty of Science and Engineering)
TANABE Shin-ichi Laboratory, Faculty of Science and Engineering
#55-N-701 Department of Architecture,
Waseda University
3-4-1 Okubo, Shinjyuku-ku, Tokyo, 169-8555, Japan
Tel:03-5292-5083 (EX: 75-3278)
E-mail:[email protected]
TANABE Shin-ichi Laboratory
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