Table of Contents
ISRN Renewable Energy
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 480137, 8 pages
Research Article

Modeling Solar Energy Transfer through Roof Material in Africa Sub-Saharan Regions

1Laboratory of Applied Ecology, Faculty of Agronomic Sciences, University of Abomey Calavi, 03 BP 3908 Cotonou, Benin
2Laboratory of Applied Hydrology, Faculty of Sciences and Technologies, University of Abomey Calavi UAC, BP 526, Benin
3Laboratory of Applied Energetic and Mechanics Ecole Polytechnique d’Abomey Calavi, University of Abomey Calavi, 03P 1175 Cotonou, Benin
4Department of Geography, University of Parakou, BP 123, Benin

Received 29 July 2013; Accepted 28 August 2013

Academic Editors: F. E. Little and M. Souliotis

Copyright © 2013 Julien G. Adounkpe et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


As a result of the global warming, the atmospheric temperature in sub-Saharan regions of Africa may drastically increase, thus worsening the poor living conditions already experienced by people in those regions. Roof’s thermal insulation capacity may play key role in reducing indoor thermal comfort cost. In the present study, effort is put to model heat transfer through roofs in south Saharan regions. Validation of the model was achieved using the slightly sloppy galvanized aluminum-iron sheet roof. Atmospheric data were hourly measured during April and June in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. Solar energy values increase from  W/m2 in the morning to a maximum of  W/m2 in the early afternoon. Ambient temperature follows the same trend as solar radiation with a maximum at °C. Wind speed varies from 0.5 to  m/s. The measured roof inner wall temperatures agreed excellently with the developed model with a Nash-Sutcliffe Coefficient of Efficiency of 0.988. Energy flux entering the room through the roof varies from  W/m2 earlier in the morning to a maximum of  W/m2 in the earlier afternoon. These results shall help to better design human habitat under changing climate conditions in the sub-Saharan regions.