Civil Engineering Drawing Questions and Answers – Orientation of Building and House Planning

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This set of Civil Engineering Drawing Multiple Choice Questions & Answers (MCQs) focuses on “Orientation of Building and House Planning”.

1. The building orientation determines the amount of radiation it receives.
a) True
b) False
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: Building orientation refers to the way a building is situated on a site and the positioning of windows, rooflines, and other features.
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2. In the equatorial location, if solar heat gain is to be avoided, the main windows should face East or West.
a) True
b) False
View Answer

Answer: b
Explanation: In the equatorial location, if solar heat gain is to be avoided, the main windows should face north or south. At the higher latitude, an orientation away from the Equator would receive the least sunshine, but here it may be desirable to have some solar heat gain in winter, when the sun is low- so an orientation towards the Equator may be preferable.

3. It is also advised to place unconditioned spaces (garages, closets and other buffer places) in the east and west sides.
a) True
b) False
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: Orientation for taking advantage of breezes in warm and humid climate and for prevention of hot winds in hot and dry climates is important but not as critical as orientation for solar heat control.
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4. In winter, much more radiation falls on the horizontal surface than on the north face.
a) True
b) False
View Answer

Answer: b
Explanation: This is because the sun is much higher in the sky, so that the angle of incidence favours the horizontal surface.

5. Daylighting is the practice of placing windows, other openings, and reflective surfaces so that sunlight (direct or indirect) can provide effective internal lighting.
a) True
b) False
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: Energy savings can be achieved from the reduced use of artificial (electric) lighting or from passive solar heating. Artificial lighting energy use can be reduced by simply installing fewer electric lights where daylight is present or by automatically dimming/switching off electric lights in response to the presence of daylight – a process known as daylight harvesting.
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6. During the winter, ACH may range from 0.50 to 0.41 in a tightly air-sealed house to 1.11 to 1.47 in a loosely air-sealed house.
a) True
b) False
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: For residential buildings, which mostly rely on infiltration for meeting their ventilation needs, a common ventilation rate measure is the air change rate (or air changes per hour) the hourly ventilation rate divided by the volume of the space (I or ACH; units of 1/h).
ASHRAE now recommends ventilation rates dependent upon floor area, as a revision to the 62-2001 standard, in which the minimum ACH was 0.35, but no less than 15 CFM/person (7.1 L/s/person). As of 2003, the standard has been changed to 3 CFM/100 sq. ft. (15 l/s/100 sq. m.) plus 7.5 CFM/person (3.5 L/s/person).

7. Orientations of up to 60° west of north and 45° east of north still allow good passive sun control.
a) True
b) False
View Answer

Answer: b
Explanation: Precise orientation is not as critical as many people think. While ideal orientation (in most climates) is solar north, orientations of up to 20° west of north and 30° east of north still allow good passive sun control. As can be seen from the diagram below, good solar orientation is possible on most sites.
Precise orientation is solar north of up to 20° west of north & 30° east of north
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8. The ideal orientation for living areas are within the range 15°W–20°E of true or ‘solar’ north.
a) True
b) False
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: It allows standard eaves overhangs to admit winter sun to heat the building and exclude summer sun with no effort from the occupants and no additional cost.
Poor orientation can exclude winter sun as well as cause overheating in summer by allowing low angle east or west sun to strike glass surfaces, creating a greenhouse effect where it’s not required. Choose a house that has good orientation or can be easily adapted for better orientation.

9. You can achieve good passive solar performance at minimal cost if you have a right ____________
a) Area
b) Location
c) Space
d) Site
View Answer

Answer: d
Explanation: Where possible, choose a site that can accommodate north-facing daytime living areas that flow to outdoor spaces with similar orientation. In tropical areas, northerly solar access is not desirable: sites that allow maximum exposure to cooling breezes and designs that draw or funnel them through the building are preferable.
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10. _________ roofs have vertical roof glass facing away from the equator side of the building to capture diffused light (not harsh direct equator-side solar gain).
a) Clerestory
b) Sawtooth
c) Translucent
d) Curved
View Answer

Answer: b
Explanation: The angled portion of the glass-support structure is opaque and well insulated with a cool roof and radiant barrier. The sawtooth roof’s lighting concept partially reduces the summer “solar furnace” skylight problem, but still allows warm interior air to rise and touch the exterior roof glass in the cold winter, with significant undesirable heat transfer.

11. __________ is a large open space located within a building. It is often used to light a central circulation or public area by daylight admitted through a glass roof or wall.
a) Atrium
b) Solarium
c) Translucent walls
d) Skylights
View Answer

Answer: a
Explanation: Atria provide some daylight to adjacent working areas, but the amount is often small and does not penetrate very far. The main function of an atrium is to provide a visual experience and a degree of contact with the outside for people in the working areas. The daylighting of successive storeys of rooms adjoining an atrium is interdependent and requires a balanced approach.

12. A tube structure which is placed into a roof and admits light to a focused area of the interior is _________
a) Solar panel
b) Tubular daylighting device
c) Heliostats
d) Solarium
View Answer

Answer: b
Explanation: TDDs use modern technology to transmit visible light through opaque walls and roofs. The tube itself is a passive component consisting of either a simple reflective interior coating or a light conducting fiber optic bundle. It is frequently capped with a transparent, roof-mounted dome “light collector” and terminated with a diffuser assembly that admits the daylight into interior spaces and distributes the available light energy evenly (or else efficiently if the use of the lit space is reasonably fixed, and the user desired one or more “bright-spots”).

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