Energy and Buildings, Vol.199, 352-367, 2019
A systematic development and validation approach to a novel agent-based modeling of occupant behaviors in commercial buildings
Occupant behaviors are one of the dominant factors that influence building energy use. Traditional building energy modeling programs use typical occupant schedules that often do not reflect actual situations. Robust occupant behavior modeling that seamlessly integrates with building energy models will not only improve simulation performance, but also provide a deeper understanding of occupant behaviors in buildings. This paper presents a development and validation approach to a novel occupant behavior model in commercial buildings. A robust agent-based modeling (ABM) tool, namely Performance Moderator Functions server (PMFserv), is used as the basis of the occupant behavior model. The ABM considers various occupant perceptions and interactions with window, door, and window-blinds based on the environmental conditions. An elaborate agent-based model that represents an office space in an existing building is developed. This is followed by a validation study of the ABM through the use of embedded sensors that capture the indoor ambient conditions and a survey to record actual occupant behaviors. By comparing the recorded behavior data with ABM output, this paper discusses the proposed ABM's prediction ability, limitations, and extensibility. Finally, the paper concludes with the potential of integrating the occupant behavior model with building energy simulation programs. (C) 2019 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.