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United Arab Emirates University College of Engineering. Graduation Project Unit Graduation Project II. Analysis and Design of Green Building Evaluation and Application Model for a Mid Rise Building in the UAE. Advisor: Dr. Noura Al-Kaabi Co-advisor: Dr. Hassan Drwish

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First Semester 2008-2009

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United Arab Emirates UniversityCollege of Engineering

Graduation Project UnitGraduation Project II

Analysis and Design of Green Building Evaluation and Application Model for a Mid Rise Building in the UAE

Advisor: Dr. Noura Al-Kaabi

Co-advisor: Dr. Hassan Drwish

Graduation Project Code: CIVL 585

Submitted for Partial Fulfillment of the

B.Sc. Degree in Civil & Environmental Engineering

Done by:

Ali Sulaiman Al Maamari 200337947

Ali Abdulla Al Harmoudi 200304156

Basel Nazir Rajab 200235917

Ibrahim Nader Al Amirah 200337538

First Semester 2008-2009


Our Deepest thanks and gratitude goes to:

Dr. Noura Al Kaabi “Project Advisor”.

Dr. Hassen Darwish “Project Co-Advisor”.

From Civil & Environmental Engineering Department:

Dr. Tamer El Maaddawy,

Dr. Munjed Maraqa,

Dr. Ashraf Biddah,

Dr. Walid El Shorbagy,

Dr. Mohsen Sherif.


Committee members:

Dr. Hasan Hejase,

Dr. Tamer El Maaddawy,

Dr. Amr Sweedan.

Graduation Project Unit at the UAE University.

Presentation Outline

  • Project Objectives

  • Introduction

  • Literature Review

  • Civil Engineering role

    • Design waste water treatment unit

    • Green roof analysis

  • Results & Discussion

  • Recommendations

  • Conclusion

Project Objective

Apply fundamentals of civil and environmental engineering to help transform existing building to green (including structural and environmental aspects).


Natural resources loss has become one of the most critical issues in the world.

Due to the construction boom in UAE, the consumption of natural resources increased, which will affect the next generations.


Recycling and using renewable natural resources are the main solutions for this problem.

Green Building concept have the ability to satisfy these solutions.


Project Potential Benefits

  • Decrease the amount of water used in an existing building.

  • Increase the use of renewable natural resources.

  • Decrease buildings impact on the environment.

Literature Review

The role of civil & environmental engineers in green buildings can be divided according to the stage of the building:

Design stage,

Building is existed and occupied.

Literature Review

Designing the structural elements.

Enhancing structural elements carrying green elements.

Designing water treatment unit for treating gray water.

Make proper insulation.

Construction management.

Design Stage

For this graduation project, we are trying to transform an existing building to green. From civil engineering point of view the following alternatives will be considered:

Designing a wastewater treatment and recycling system.

Check the structural capability of the building to support new components as green roofs.

Existing Building

Green buildings usually contain waste water treatment plants to recycle the waste water coming out from the building.

It is the role of civil engineers to calculate, study, design and build water treatment systems in green buildings.

First Alternative: Designing a Waste Water Treatment System

First Alternative: Designing a Waste Water Treatment System

Wastewater can be divided into two types:

Gray water

Generated from domestic processes such as washing dishes, laundry and bathing. It is comprises 50-80% of residential wastewater.

Black water

Contain fecal matter, significant food residues and high concentrations of toxic chemicals.

First Alternative: Designing a Waste Water Treatment System


First Alternative: Designing a Waste Water Treatment System

Designing wastewater treatment unit depends on three main factors:

1) Treated water uses.

2) Row water quality.

3) The flow rate.


(Row water)


(Treated Water)

Treatment unit

Second Alternative: Green Roof

  • Definition

  • Green roof consists of vegetation and soil, or a growing medium, planted over a waterproofing membrane.

  • Additional layers, such as a root barrier, water drainage and irrigation systems may also be included.

Second Alternative: Green Roof

  • Methods of green roof application:

    • 1) Spreading Soil

Methods of green roof application:

2) Using Containers & Pots:




Second Alternative: Green Roof

Usable Vegetation

Best choice: Garden Grass

Soil Used

Best soil mix: Sand and Compost

with a ratio of 2:1 of sand and compost respectively

Second Alternative: Green Roof

Methods & Techniques

Alternative One: Designing a Waste Water Treatment System

  • The main steps for designing waste water treatment unit:

    • Gathering water samples.

    • Analyzing water contaminant.

    • Choosing treatment process depending on the water usage.

    • Designing treatment units.

First sample: Toilets (hand washing sink).

Second sample: kitchens (dish washing sink).

Collecting Sample

Analyzing water contaminant

The tests which have conducted in the Lab are:

Total Dissolved Solids (TDS)

Turbidity suspended solid Test (TSS)

Coliform Test

Total organic matter

After analyzing water contaminants by performing some lab tests, we end up with a clear vision for a proposed design for the waste water treatment unit, as in the next diagram:

Proposed Design for Wastewater Treatment Plant

Based on some roughly estimations regarding number of users and daily consumption of the gray water in the buildings:

The flow rate will be about 292.6 m3/day

Flow rate estimation

The treated water will be used mainly in two functions:

Irrigating the green roof.

Flushing water in toilets.

Treated Water Demand

Green Roofs’ Water Demand

The grass will be sprinkled with the treated waste water in the building.

We have used the Blaney-Criddle Method in order to know the amount of water needed for 1 square meter of grass for the whole year.

Amount of water required after doing the calculations is 26.21 m3/day

Primary Settling Tank

A treatment unit used to settle raw wastewater.

Used sedimentation process to separate the settleable and floatable solids from the wastewater.

Sedimentation is the oldest and most widely used process in the effective treatment of wastewater.

Primary Settling Tank

The benefits of primary settling tank are:

Reduce suspended solids content (remove 50-60 %).

Reduce settleable solids content (remove 90-95 %).

Equalize the sidestream flow.

BOD removal (remove 25-35 %).

Sand Filter

The purpose of filtration is to remove suspended particles from water by passing the water through a medium such as sand.

99.5% of the suspended solids in water can be removed, including minerals, floc and microorganisms.

Sand Filter

The Height of the Filter has its own Specifications to control.

Total height = 1.75m

Pump selection

equation (Bernoulli equation):

Schematic Drawing of WWTU

The building which the green roof is applied on in this project has high quality of designing.

The structural element which we studied is the roof.

Reinforcing system which applied is multi-reinforcing system (steel mesh and post-tension).

Extra weight calculations Theory


Soil volume= (1 m) * (1 m) * (0.2 m) = 0.2 m3

γsoil = 18 KN/m3 (fully saturated soil mix)

Wt/m2 = 18 * 0.2 = 3.6 KN/m2

Because the roof is easy accessible, the load = 2 KN/m2

Total load = 3.6 x 2 = 5.4 KN/m2

This load will replace the existed load which is (5 KN/m2)

0.20 m

1 m

1 m

Green roof load estimating


The Slab which we are working on is contains of four large one way slabs.

The cables which will resist the load are the parallel to the short span (Vertical post-tension).

By comparing the resists of the structural element (Mn) with the applied load (Mu), we can check the safety of the structural element.

Analysis Process


Computing the applied load using software “Prokon Structural Analysis”.

To find (Mn) we used ACI standards for post-tension:

Analysis Process


The following result slides for structure


The results show that it's unsafe to apply the green roof in some locations (some of negative moment locations).

To make the section safe, there are some suggestions which will help the structure to carry the load.



Increase the thickness of the slabs so the compression area of concrete will increase.

Install carbon-fiber strips so its increase the capacity of the slab to carry the loads in the critical areas.

Decrease the weight of the green roof so the slab will carry the load.



Increase the thickness  increase slab own weight.

 hard to apply on an existed building.

Carbon-fiber has high cost (about 150 Dhs/m).

Decreasing the weight

Reduce soil thickness problems with the root growth problems in water drainage.

Reduce covered area  reducing the green roof function.



Install carbon-fiber because it is easy to apply.

But due to time limitation, we couldn’t calculate the amount required for strengthen the roof.

Checking the safety of beams and columns in the all building is required.



Results & discussion

1- Designing a wastewater treatment units

2- Green Roof

3- Cost estimation

Designing a wastewater treatment units

  • After performing some lab tests on the wastewater samples, the result came up as following:

Designing a wastewater treatment units

  • The needed treatment stages.

  • inflow rate of (292.6 m3/day).

  • For the outflow rate calculation we have to know the amount of water needed in the building for irrigation & flushing the toilets.

Designing a wastewater treatment units

  • Waste water treatment plant design

Green Roof

Cost estimation

  • We have consulted some experts, contractors and companies to get the costs of the needed elements.

  • Tablessssssssssss!!

LEED implication

  • By adding the elements we suggested, 8 points can be added for our building rating.

  • Picture…


Treating grey water in the building can save a lot on the owner & the government.

We don’t need that big area for treating the grey water

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