Healthcare Living Laboratories: Fernhill Residential Aged Care (LLHC3)

Project dates: 2019 - Ongoing

This project will support the validation of innovations in building products, smart sensors and control devices, and electricity generation, storage and trading related to the healthcare sector.

Energy consumption in aged care is dominated by space heating and cooling, hot water services and lighting. Power (kW) and energy (kWh) are strongly correlated to outside temperature, accounting for 80 per cent of variation in electricity consumption and resulting in weather-induced impacts. Current energy consumption benchmarks relate to occupancy levels or floor area. There is a need to understand and manage daily and seasonal energy demand profiles for different services, and the impact these have on energy costs, the local and national grid, and greenhouse gas emissions.

The Fernhill RAC sub-tropical climate passive design maximises natural lighting and ventilation and somewhat minimises solar heat gain in summer. A high level of energy efficiency is incorporated in lighting, HVAC and energy management systems. The Living Lab will enable HVAC and building services industries to have innovative technologies independently validated in a live setting, drawing not only on the technical performance but also on the impact and acceptability of the technologies for occupants, staff and facility managers and owners. Technologies will be evaluated in terms of energy and power reductions, life-cycle operational costs and environmental impact.

Funding / Grants

  • ARENA, iHUB member organisations and industry. Amount: $769,200

Chief Investigators


Other Team Members

Dr Aaron Liu Dr Sherif Zedan Dr Yunlong Ma Dr Talara Berry Dr Nima Izadyar