This study evaluates the effect of building envelopes on the life cycle energy consumption of high rise residential buildings in Jakarta, Indonesia. For high rise residential buildings, the enclosures contribute 10-50% of the total building cost, 14-17% of the total material mass and 20-30% of the total heat gain. The direct as well as indirect influence of the envelope materials plays an important role in the life cycle energy consumption of buildings. The initial embodied energy of typical double wall and single wall envelopes for high residential buildings is 79.5 GJ and 76.3 GJ, respectively. Over an assumed life span of 40 years, double walls have better energy performance than single walls, 283 GJ versus 480 GJ, respectively. Material selection, which depends not only on embodied energy but also thermal properties, should, therefore, play a crucial role during the design of buildings. © 2009 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.
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