A fully autonomous kernel-based online learning neural network model and its application to building cooling load prediction

E. W. M. Lee, I. W. H. Fung, V. W. Y. Tam, M. Arashpour

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Building cooling load prediction is critical to the success of energy-saving measures. While many of the computational models currently available in the industry have been developed for this purpose, most require extensive computer resources and involve lengthy computational processes. Artificial neural networks (ANNs) have recently been adopted for prediction, and pioneering works have confirmed the feasibility of this approach. However, users are required to predetermine an ANN model’s parameters. This hinders the applicability of the ANN approach in actual engineering problems, as most engineers may be unfamiliar with soft computing. This paper proposes a fully autonomous kernel-based neural network (AKNN) model for noisy data regression prediction. No part of the model’s mechanism requires human intervention; rather, it self-organises its structure according to the training samples presented. Unlike the other existing autonomous models, the AKNN model is an online learning model. It is particularly suitable for online steps-ahead prediction. In this paper, we benchmark the AKNN model’s performance according to other ANN models. It is also successfully applied to predicting the cooling load of a commercial building in Hong Kong. The occupancy areas and concentration of carbon dioxide inside the building are successfully adopted to mimic the building’s internal cooling load. Training data was adopted from actual measurements taken inside the building. Its results show reasonable agreement with actual cooling loads.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1999-2014
Number of pages16
JournalSoft Computing
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Artificial neural network
  • Building cooling load
  • Kernel regression

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