The COPSE project

Co-incident probabilistic climate change weather data for a sustainable environment


The COPSE project is aimed at developing a methodology for providing the weather data that the building community needs for making decisions about new and existing buildings. Changing climate means changing weather and this affects the need and provision of heating, cooling and ventilation. It is generally accepted that the climate is warming, but it is weather on a day to day basis that determines our design choices. COPSE is looking at the many projections for possible future weather provided by UKCIP and determining how best to generate appropriate weather files for building practitioners. UKCIP data (released June 2009) is probabilistic in nature — it does not provide a single projection, but many thousands of projections. This gives an opportunity to explore the uncertainty in climate and weather forecasting, and how this relates to what is an acceptable risk when designing a building: how often can it be allowed to overheat and by how much?

Project partners are looking at many different implications of the future projections of weather and how these compare with existing guidelines and practices used to promote comfortable, healthy and low energy buildings.

School of Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering, The University of Manchester, Manchester, UK, M13 9PL