Sustainable technologies at urban and building scale; environmental quality and energy efficiency for new and existing buildings; sustainable retrofit for historic heritage; integration of RES technologies in the built environment.


Short description of the research team

Thematic fields of interest/research areas:

Architettura>Energia is a Research Centre of the Department of Architecture, University of Ferrara, Italy. Architettura>Energia has a strong interdisciplinary character and is involved in research, design consulting, training and services for public administrations, businesses and privates for issues related to energy efficiency and environmental quality of buildings and urban spaces. Fields of interest are sustainability at urban and building scale, both in new buildings and in the recovery and redevelopment of existing ones, even in cases of high historic values, with a recent interest to the industrial sites, school buildings, social housing construction and historic heritage. The Research Centre provides design and operating guidelines for buildings and urban planning, performance enhancements, testing and collection of technologies, procedures and models of intervention aimed at achieving high standards of environmental sustainability and energy efficiency, research applied to special plants and technologies fed by renewable energy sources, local and regional energy planning, experimentation within the instrumental energy audit. A>E also operates in scientific management, promotion and organization of training activities and scientific dissemination such as training and further training, masters, workshops and conferences in a strategic sector for the contemporary society.


Manager/head of the team:Andrea Rinaldi

Team members:

Architecture Section: Pietromaria Davoli (vice-director), Marcello Balzani, Paola Boarin, Silvia Brunoro, Valeria Farinelli, Alessandro Gaiani, Maria Cristina Garavelli, Gabriele Lelli, Luca Magarotto, Nicola Marzot, Gianluca Minguzzi, Valentina Modugno, Valentina Radi, Paolo Rava, Graziano Trippa, Theo Zaffagnini.

Energy Section: Giacomo Bizzarri (vice-director), Vittorino Belpoliti, Laura Gabrielli, Marta Calzolari, Roberto Capra, Valeria Farinelli, Enrico Lambertini, Alex Lambruschi, Amedeo Papi.


Research infrastructures:

In A>E’s office:

  • N.2 working stations with Windows operating system;
  • N.1 printer;
  • N.1 scanner;
  • N.1 phone/fax.

At Department of Architecture:

  • Library (books and architecture journals and magazines);
  • Computer Lab;
  • Physical models Lab;
  • Possible use of a thermal camera (used only with the presence of A>E staff);
  • Possible use of a flux meter (used only with the presence of A>E staff);
  • Possible interactions with the other research groups of the Department (


Prerequisites of the trainee researcher:

Level of education: “Marie Curie Individual Fellowship” Action requirements.

Research experience: experience in the field of sustainability applied to the built environment (historic and/or more recent buildings) in terms of energy efficiency and environmental quality.

Required working language: English


Contacts: arch. Paola Boarin, International relations and research Fellow at A>E


Further useful information:

Field of research of the “Architecture” section: the Research Centre provides advisory and design research aimed to raising energy efficiency and environmental quality of buildings, both in new construction, both in the recovery and/or restoration of existing buildings.

Main research fields are:

  • design guidelines of performance enhancement aimed to increase energy efficiency and environmental quality of existing buildings, even in cases of high historic value;
  • experimentation and collection of technologies, procedures and intervention models for the technological development and innovation of building products and processes;
  • elaboration of design guidelines from the building scale (implementations of local building codes) to the urban one (regional energy planning), with a most recent interest towards industrial sites, historic buildings and settlements, schools, social buildings and envelopes summer behaviour;
  • data collection and development of databases concerning sustainability, energy efficiency and certification processes.


Field of research of the “Energy” section: the Research Centre carries out research relating to special equipment design (fuel cells) and renewable energy sources (wind, solar, biomass, hydropower), with application to the neighborhood scale and local level.

Main expertise fields are:

  • research in innovative photovoltaic systems applied to architecture, with particular reference to thermal and optical features of semitransparent devices;
  • energy performance evaluation, based on calculations and experimental applications in the field, through the employment of advanced and integrated techniques for diagnostics, construction site checks or other buildings monitoring and for the optimization of the evaluation process of the historical heritage;
  • energy planning at local and regional scale;
  • support to the preparation of calls for Public Administrations.


Measurings and evaluations

Architecture>Energy Research Centre delivers physical measurements for performance assessment and evaluation of buildings and urban sectors. The measurements are performed either on the basis of calculations and experimental applications in the field, through advanced diagnosis techniques, on site verification and ex-post monitoring.

Main expertise fields are:

  • evaluation of envelopes thermal behaviour through infrared thermal camera;
  • evaluation of envelopes thermal quality through heat flux meter;
  • calculations of energy balances and heat flows (static and dynamic approach) for the evaluation of energy consumption (current and expected), the risk of condensation and thermal bridges;
  • design, dimensioning and architectural integration of systems powered by renewable energy sources (solar thermal, photovoltaics, micro-CHP, micro-wind, etc.);
  • evaluation of the use of solar energy (shading, overheating, etc.) through the use of solar diagrams;
  • indoors and outdoors acoustic measurements and development of impact analysis for the determination of the acoustic and sound insulation requirements related to passive acoustic performance of buildings.

The Centre can also offer economic assessments regarding investments in energy efficiency and environmental quality, in particular:

  • estimation of amortization for energy saving measures and construction of plants fed by renewable energy sources;
  • calculating of the present value of investment for energy efficiency enhancement of existing buildings and comparison of technical solutions to new construction.