Rear zone for energy efficiency in large mosques in Saudi Arabia
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Energy efficiency in Mosques
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Mosques are places of worship for Muslims and have great importance, unique function and peculiar operating characteristics. Large mosques in Saudi cities are those in which Friday prayers (the noon prayer on Friday) are performed. Therefore, they are designed to accommodate a large number of worshippers at one time. However, only 15% of the full capacity is present at each of the remaining five-daily prayers. For approximately an hour, the Heating, Ventilation and Air-Conditioning (HVAC) and lighting systems are on in the entire mosque during each of these five daily times. Maintaining indoor thermal comfort in Saudi Arabian hot areas requires a considerable amount of energy for cooling. Hence, to alleviate this dilemma, a rear zone idea is proposed in this study. Fieldwork and simulation methods were used to predict the reduction in energy consumption and the payback of the incurred costs. Results show a reduction in annual energy consumption of approximately 64%, which is equivalent to USD 8203. The cost of the partition can be paid back in 18.2 months.