Eco-Logical Design Thinking in the Hot, Humid Tropics
Comfortable and low energy houses must be developed first by engaging natural passive design with technology. Natural ventilation as a form of cross ventilation has been promoted religiously by many books as a way of natural cooling in the hot humid tropics. However in Malaysia, the cross ventilation is considered a myth as the wind is almost static. This paper readdresses this myth by outlining what is a 'must', 'extra' and 'unnecessary' in design strategies or principles. First, it presents what is the 'context' in which architecture in Malaysia includes climatic consideration. Understanding the hot sun is seen as new priority and minimizing heat by controlling solar heat is presented as more logical. Further, rethinking what to harness and avoid could lead to more appropriate sustainable architecture in hot humid tropics like Malaysia.
Keywords: Hot Humid Tropics, Passive Design Principles, Natural Ventilation, Understanding Solar, Sustainable Arhitecture
Assoc Prof. Mohd Hamdan Ahmad
Deputy Dean (Postgraduate & Research), Faculty of Built Environment, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia