The thermal performance of vacuum glazing was predicted using two dimensional (2-D) finite element and three dimensional (3-D) finite volume models. In the 2-D model, the vacuum space, including the pillar arrays, was represented by a material whose effective thermal conductivity was determined from the specified vacuum space width, the heat conduction through the pillar array and the calculated radiation heat transfer between the two interior glass surfaces within the vacuum gap. In the 3-D model, the support pillar array was incorporated and modeled within the glazing unit directly. The difference in predicted overall heat transfer coefficients between the two models for the vacuum window simulated was less than 3%. A guarded hot box calorimeter was used to determine the experimental thermal performance of vacuum glazing. The experimentally determined overall heat transfer coefficient and temperature profiles along the central line of the vacuum glazing are in very good agreement with the predictions made using the 2-D and 3-D models.

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