Based on the need to reduce CO2emissions and minimize energy dependency, the EU Member States have set ambitious energy policies goals and have developed respective, specific regulations, in order to improve the energy performance of the building sector. Thus, specific measures regarding the buildings' envelope, the use of efficient HVAC technologies and the integration of renewable energy systems are being constantly studied and promoted. The effective combination of these three main aspects will consequently result in maximum energy efficiency. Germany has played a key role in this development, with intensive work focusing in the improvement of the energy behaviour of the residential building stock. In this paper, the use of radiative heating systems placing special emphasis on infrared is being studied as part of the energy renovation of residential buildings from the 1970's. This is done by applying an integrated assessment model to evaluate specific interventions regarding the improvement of the energy behaviour of the buildings' envelope and the use of radiative heating systems, based on a thorough Life Cycle Analysis according to criteria of energy, economic and environmental performance, as well as thermal comfort. © 2011 Elsevier Ltd.
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