Dynamic modeling of presence of occupants using inhomogeneous Markov chains

Philip Hvidthøft Delff Andersen, Anne Iversen, Henrik Madsen, Carsten Rode

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Occupancy modeling is a necessary step towards reliable simulation of energy consumption in buildings. This paper outlines a method for fitting recordings of presence of occupants and simulation of single-person to multiple-persons office environments. The method includes modeling of dependence on time of day, and by use of a filter of the observations it is able to capture per-employee sequence dynamics. Simulations using this method are compared with simulations using homogeneous Markov chains and show far better ability to reproduce key properties of the data. The method is based on inhomogeneous Markov chains with where the transition probabilities are estimated using generalized linear models with polynomials, B-splines, and a filter of passed observations as inputs. For treating the dispersion of the data series, a hierarchical model structure is used where one model is for low presence rate, and another is for high presence rate.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEnergy and Buildings
Pages (from-to)213-223
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Energy utilization
  • Hierarchical systems
  • Markov processes


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