The Robb House in New York City.


The world's first skyscraper in Chicago.

A building is a structure with a roof and walls, such as an apartment, school_, store_, or factory_.


1   Production


Section drawing of the Pennsylvania Academy of Art.


Floor plan for the 110th floor of the World Trade Center.

The process of designing a building is called architecture.

2   Classification

2.1   Stick-built home

A stick-built home is a wooden house constructed entirely or largely on-site; that is, built on the site which it is intended to occupy upon its completion rather than in a factory or similar facility.

3   Substance

4   History

4.1   Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC)


Carrier's air conditioner patent.


Relative state populations from 1917 to 2017.

Air conditioning led to development of the Sun Belt as Republicans moved south to states like Texas and Florida. It also enabled many more people to live in hot places like Arizona, and their populations increased rapidly. [1]

Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning refers to ...

An actuator is a device that interfaces between a control system and a mechanical system.

How is this different from refrigeration?

Ever since our ancestors mastered fire, humans have been able to warm themselves. Cooling down when it is hot has been more challenging. [2]

In the 19th century, it was possible to mine ice, insulate it in sawdust_, and ship it to warmer climates for the summer. Frederic Tudor did this in New England. [2]


Air conditioning was invented by American inventor Willis Carrier in 1902 with the original goal of keeping humidity_ consistent. The Sackett and Wilhelms Lithography & Printing Company in Brooklyn, New York were trying to publish an issue of the popular humor magazine "Judge", but same paper had to be printed four times in four colors, and if the humidity changed between runs, the paper would slightly expand or contract. Even a milimetere's misalignment looked awful. [2] The printers asked heating company Buffalo Forge to devise a system to control humidity. [2] Carrier developed a system that pumps air over metal coils cooled with compressed ammonia_ to pull moisture from the air, which kept the humidity at a constant 55% and as a side effect chilled it. [2] Buffalo Forge continued to sell Carrier's invention wherever humidity posed problems, such as flour mills and the Gillette corporation, where excessive moisture rusted the razor blades. [2]

By 1906, Carrier was exploring the potential for "comfort" applications in public buildings like theaters. Before AC, movie theaters struggled to sell movie tickets in the summer. New England ice had been briefly popular- in the sumer of 1880, New York's Madison Square Theater used four tons a day. An eight-foot fan blew air over the ice and through ducts towards the audience. But with increasing pollution in New England's lakes, the melting ice sometimes released unpleasant smells. [2] The general public first experienced air conditioning in movie theaters in the 1920s, and it quickly became as much of a selling point as the films. The adoption of AC led to summer blockbusters such as Titanic, as does the rise of the shopping mall. [2]

Before World War II, private air conditioning was seen as a luxury. [1] Early AC systems were massive, but by the late 1940s, Carrier and other companies were selling air conditioners that could fit in your windows. [1]

In 1960, 13% of homes in the United States had AC. By 1980, it was up to 55%. In 2018, it's close to 90%. [1]


Home with porch and cupola located in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.


A mid-19th-century dogtrot house in Dubach, Louisiana.

The dogtrot, also known as a breezeway house, is a style of house that was common throughout the Southeastern United States during the 19th and early 20th centuries. The building was bisected by a covered, open-ended corridor to let breezes through (a "breezeway").

Historically, buildings had several features to make living in hot places more comfortable. They were built with adobe and stone which absorb heat during the day and release it at night. There were screened-in sleeping porches, breezeways between rooms, and cupolas in the roof to draw cool air up through the house. They had flat roofs (why?) and lots of windows that people could open, and tried to catch wind and maximize shade. Offices had high ceilings and many windows which could be opened. They might have a central courtyard so that more rooms can have windows, and are sometimes called "alphabet buildings" because when viewed from above they take the shape of the letters "E", "H", and "I". [1]

Historically, a cool building in a hot climate implied thick walls, high ceilings, balconies, courtyards and windows facing away from the sun. [2]

AC freed architectures from the challenge of designing a home suited to the climate around it. It was possible to design skyscrapers with glass facades. Many modern buildings would be uninhabitable with AC. This is problematic as the US exports its architecture styles internationally, including to hot places like Dubai. [1]

Standards for thermal comfort exist, but there are individual variations in thermal comfort. One idea for offices to focus less on heating spaces, and more on heating particular people, such as with desk fans or heated seats. [1]

Emerging economies have since caught up quickly: China will soon become the global leader. The proportion of air-conditioned homes in Chinese cities jumped from under a tenth to more than two-thirds in just 10 years. [2]

In countries like India, Brazil and Indonesia, the market for air conditioners is expanding at double-digit rates. And there's plenty more room for growth: 11 of the world's 30 largest cities are in the tropics. [2]

Studies show that it lowers mortality during heat waves. Heat makes prison inmates fractious - air conditioning pays for itself by reducing fights. [2]

When the temperature exceeds 21C or 22C in exam halls, students start to score lower in maths tests. [2]

In offices, air conditioning makes us more productive: according to one early study, it made US government typists do 24% more work. [2]

William Nordhaus divided the world into cells, by lines of latitude and longitude, and plotted each one's climate, output and population. The hotter the average temperature, he found, the less productive the people. [2]

According to Geoffrey Heal and Jisung Park, a hotter-than-average year is bad for productivity in hot countries, but good in cold ones. They conclude that human productivity peaks at between 18C and 22C. [2]

But there's an inconvenient truth: you can only make it cooler inside by making it warmer outside. [2]

A study in Phoenix, Arizona, found the hot air pumped out of air conditioning units increased the city's night-time temperature by 2C. Of course, that makes air conditioning units work harder, making the outside hotter still. [2]

9 out of 10 ac units are the same. Despite the brand and by extension the cost they mostly come from one maker in New Jersey. Ingersoll Rand.

4.2   Heating

A heat pump is a mechanical-compression cycle refrigeration system that uses electricity to move heat from one place to another in order to either heat or cool a controlled space. Heat pumps are similar to air conditioners, except that a heat pump can also heat your home while an air conditioner cannot. Heat pumps are best for moderate climates, and a supplemental heating source may be needed for lower temperatures. [3]

5   Earthquake resistance

For large skyscraper type buildings, the very top of it will be some kind of atrium with a large concrete ball hanging from the top. So as the building moves, the ball will move in the opposite direction, keeping the building in the same place.

This is called a tuned mass damper.

Don't use bricks.

6   Kinds

6.1   Conservatory

A sunroom or conservatory is a structure usually constructed onto the side of a house which allows enjoyment of the surrounding landscape while being sheltered from adverse weather conditions.

7   Energy consumption

8   Further reading

9   Resources

10   References

[1](1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8) Emmett FitzGerald. Jan 16, 2018. 99% Invisible. Thermal Delight.
[2](1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18) Tim Harford. June 5, 2017. How air conditioning changed the world
[3]What is a Heat Pump?