Chunbun Au graduated in Building Service Engineering from the Hong Kong Polytechnic University and is currently working on a PhD study in Architectural Science at Cardiff University. Henry is a specialist in building physics and works for an engineering and environmental consultancy company in Hong Kong, offering expert services to organisations and governments. His work includes air ventilation assessment, building microclimate study, city ventilation and sustainable building design. He is currently working on projects in Hong Kong, Taiwan and China.
Henry's research interests are in computational fluid dynamic, sustainable city / building planning & design, urban climatology and city ventilation. Henry believes that passive design is the basis of sustainable building. A true sustainable design should always respond to the microclimate and site conditions, with the intention to reduce energy mechanisms for keeping or enhancing residents' comfort. The focus of the thesis can be summarised as follows:
Human activities, rapid urbanisation, regional weather climate and the microclimate has turned Hong Kong into a city with thermal discomfort and poorly ventilated environments. Such high-density living built environment leads to poor city ventilation and an urban heat island (UHI) effect. This has significantly reduced the living standards in Hong Kong. Nevertheless, the built environment could be improved by implementing a climate responsive design approach in city planning - a true integration of city planning and site environmental assessment. Through this approach, the design team is able to understand the role of the principal factors influencing the built environment, and guide the buildings design to provide year-round comfort for the residents, whilst minimising UHI effect, energy consumption and environmental loadings.