Applicability of high-temperature cooling systems in different European countries from the view of the condensation risk


Due to the different approaches in determining the ventilation airflow rate per person for workspaces, where high-temperature air conditioning systems are used for air conditioning, problems with the condensation of water vapour on the cold surfaces of the system can occur. The article analyses the risk of condensation in various European cities using the available climatic data. Systems with cooling ceilings and cooling beams with a ventilation device operating in parallel are taken into account. Different ventilation airflow rates per person were analysed. On the example of a room equipped with high-temperature cooling, an energy simulation calculation is performed, which includes a ventilation and air-conditioning system with the possibility of capacity control. It is clear from the results that the condensation of water vapour can be prevented by technical measures at the cost of reducing the cooling capacity, which can affect the achievement of the thermal comfort of those present. In the end, suitable solutions are discussed, which should already be adopted at the time the device is designed so that the risk of condensation is not a major obstacle in the operation of these energy-efficient systems. An irreplaceable role in the operation of high-temperature cooling systems is played by a measurement and control system with a suitable algorithm to prevent condensation.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.


c :

specific heat [J/(kg·K)]


condensation risk [%]

h :

enthalpy [kJ/kg]


mass flow rate [kg/s]


mean radiant temperature [°C]


predicted mean vote [—]

\(\dot V\) :

volume airflow rate [m3/h]

\(\dot Q\) :

heat flux [W]


relative humidity [%]

t :

temperature [°C]

W :

humidity ratio [g/kg]

ρ :

air density [kg/m3]




cooling coil




dew point







p :







water vapour




wet bulb


inlet water


return water


  1. Amini M, Maddahian R, Saemi S (2020). Numerical investigation of a new method to control the condensation problem in ceiling radiant cooling panels. Journal of Building Engineering, 32: 101707.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  2. ASHRAE (2009). ASHRAE Handbook: Fundamentals. Atlanta: American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers.

    Google Scholar 

  3. ASHRAE (2013). ASHRAE Standard 62.1. Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality. Atlanta: American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers.

    Google Scholar 

  4. Chung WJ, Lim JH (2019). Cooling operation guidelines of thermally activated building system considering the condensation risk in hot and humid climate. Energy and Buildings, 193: 226–239.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  5. EN 13779 (2010). Ventilation for Non-Residential Buildings—Performance Requirements for Ventilation and Room-Conditioning Systems. European Committee for Standardization.

  6. Ge G, Xiao F, Wang S (2012). Neural network based prediction method for preventing condensation in chilled ceiling systems. Energy and Buildings, 45: 290–298.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  7. Hao X, Zhang G, Chen Y, et al. (2007). A combined system of chilled ceiling, displacement ventilation and desiccant dehumidification. Building and Environment, 42: 3298–3308.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  8. Inkster T, Peters C, Soulsby H (2020). Potential infection control risks associated with chilled beam technology: Experience from a UK hospital. Journal of Hospital Infection, 106: 613–616.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  9. Jin W, Jia L, Wang Q, et al. (2015). Study on condensation features of radiant cooling ceiling. Procedia Engineering, 121: 1682–1688.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  10. Jin W, Jia L, Gao P, et al. (2017). The moisture content distribution of a room with radiant ceiling cooling and wall-attached jet system. Building Simulation, 10: 41–50.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  11. Jin W, Ma J, Bi C, et al. (2020). Dynamic variation in dew-point temperature of attached air layer of radiant ceiling cooling panels. Building Simulation, 13: 1281–1290.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  12. Kim MK, Liu J, Cao S (2018). Energy analysis of a hybrid radiant cooling system under hot and humid climates: A case study at Shanghai in China. Building and Environment, 137: 208–214.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  13. Lim JH, Jo JH, Kim YY, et al. (2006). Application of the control methods for radiant floor cooling system in residential buildings. Building and Environment, 41: 60–73.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  14. Mumma SA (2003). Chilled ceiling condensation control. ASHRAE IAQ Applications, 4(4): 22–23.

    Google Scholar 

  15. Niu JL, Zhang LZ, Zuo HG (2002). Energy savings potential of chilled-ceiling combined with desiccant cooling in hot and humid climates. Energy and Buildings, 34: 487–495.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  16. Novoselac A, Srebric J (2002). A critical review on the performance and design of combined cooled ceiling and displacement ventilation systems. Energy and Buildings, 34: 497–509.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  17. Pieskä H, Ploskić A, Wang Q (2020). Design requirements for condensation-free operation of high-temperature cooling systems in Mediterranean climate. Building and Environment, 185: 107273.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  18. Recknagel H, Schramek E-R, Sprenger E (2007). Taschenbuch für Heizung und Klimatechnik. München: Oldenbourg Industrieverlag. (in German)

    Google Scholar 

  19. Rhee KN, Kim KW (2015). A 50 year review of basic and applied research in radiant heating and cooling systems for the built environment. Building and Environment, 91: 166–190.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  20. Rhee KN, Olesen BW, Kim KW (2017). Ten questions about radiant heating and cooling systems. Building and Environment, 112: 367–381.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  21. Saber EM, Iyengar R, Mast M, et al. (2014). Thermal comfort and IAQ analysis of a decentralized DOAS system coupled with radiant cooling for the tropics. Building and Environment, 82: 361–370.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  22. Saber EM, Tham KW, Leibundgut H (2016). A review of high temperature cooling systems in tropical buildings. Building and Environment, 96: 237–249.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. Sekhar C, Zheng L (2018). Study of an integrated personalized ventilation and local fan-induced active chilled beam air conditioning system in hot and humid climate. Building Simulation, 11: 787–801.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  24. Song D, Kim T, Song S, et al. (2008). Performance evaluation of a radiant floor cooling system integrated with dehumidified ventilation. Applied Thermal Engineering, 28: 1299–1311.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  25. Tang H, Liu X, Jiang Y (2016a). Theoretical and experimental study of condensation rates on radiant cooling surfaces in humid air. Building and Environment, 97: 1–10.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  26. Tang H, Liu X, Li H, et al. (2016b). Study on the reduction of condensation risks on the radiant cooling ceiling with superhydrophobic treatment. Building and Environment, 100: 135–144.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  27. Teodosiu C, Ilie V, Teodosiu R (2016). Numerical prediction of thermal comfort and condensation risk in a ventilated office, equipped with a cooling ceiling. Energy Procedia, 85: 550–558.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  28. Virta M, Butler D, Graslund J, et al. (2004). Chilled beam Application Guidebook. Brussels: REHVA.

    Google Scholar 

  29. Yin YL, Wang RZ, Zhai XQ, et al. (2014). Experimental investigation on the heat transfer performance and water condensation phenomenon of radiant cooling panels. Building and Environment, 71: 15–23.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  30. Zhang LZ, Niu JL (2003). Indoor humidity behaviors associated with decoupled cooling in hot and humid climates. Building and Environment, 38: 99–107.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  31. Zhang C, Heiselberg PK, Chen Q, et al. (2017). Numerical analysis of diffuse ceiling ventilation and its integration with a radiant ceiling system. Building Simulation, 10: 203–218.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  32. Zhang Y, Wu Z, Zhang M, et al. (2018). Smart indoor humidity and condensation control in the spring in hot-humid areas. Building and Environment, 135: 42–52.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  33. Zmrhal V (2014). Condensation risk in high-temperature air-conditioning systems. Heating, Ventilation, Sanitation, 23(2): 76–80. (in Czech)

    Google Scholar 

  34. Zmrhal V (2017). Heat gains from the people as a basis of energy simulation. Heating, Ventilation, Sanitation, 26(4): 234–239. (in Czech)

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to Vladimír Zmrhal.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Zmrhal, V., Barták, M. Applicability of high-temperature cooling systems in different European countries from the view of the condensation risk. Build. Simul. (2021).

Download citation


  • ventilation
  • air-conditioning
  • cooled ceilings
  • chilled beams
  • low energy cooling
  • risk of condensation