Few third-party guidance documents or tools are available for evaluating thermal energy storage (TES) integrated with packaged air conditioning (AC), as this type of TES is relatively new compared to TES integrated with chillers or hot water systems. To address this gap, researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory conducted a project to improve the ability of potential technology adopters to evaluate TES technologies. Major project outcomes included: development of an evaluation framework to describe key metrics, methodologies, and issues to consider when assessing the performance of TES systems integrated with packaged AC; application of multiple concepts from the evaluation framework to analyze performance data from four demonstration sites; and production of a new simulation capability that enables modeling of TES integrated with packaged AC in EnergyPlus. This report includes the evaluation framework and analysis results from the project.
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OpenStudio development efforts have been focused on providing Application Programming Interfaces (APIs) where users are able to extend OpenStudio without the need to compile the open source libraries. This paper will discuss the basic purposes and functionalities of the core libraries that have been wrapped with APIs including the Building Model, Results Processing, Advanced Analysis, Uncertainty Quantification, and Data Interoperability through Translators. Several building energy modeling applications have been produced using OpenStudio's API and Software Development Kits (SDK) including the United States Department of Energy's Asset ScoreCalculator, a mobile-based audit tool, an energy design assistance reporting protocol, and a portfolio scale incentive optimization analysis methodology. Each of these software applications will be discussed briefly and will describe how the APIs were leveraged for various uses including high-level modeling, data transformations from detailed building audits, error checking/quality assurance of models, and use of high-performance computing for mass simulations.
This paper will discuss the Building Agent™ platform, which has been developed and deployed in a campus setting at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory. The Building Agent™ provides aggregated and coherent access to building data, including electric energy, thermal energy, temperatures, humidity, and lighting levels, and occupant feedback, which are displayed in various manners for visitors, building occupants, facility managers, and researchers. This paper focuses on the development of visualizations for facility managers, or an energy performance assurance role, where metered data are used to generate models that provide live predicted ranges of building performance by end use.
Cooling loads must be dramatically reduced when designing net-zero energy buildings or other highly efficient facilities. Advances in this area have focused primarily on reducing a building’s sensible cooling loads by improving the envelope, integrating properly sized daylighting systems, adding exterior solar shading devices, and reducing internal heat gains. As sensible loads decrease, however, latent loads remain relatively constant, and thus become a greater fraction of the overall cooling requirement in highly efficient building designs, particularly in humid climates. This shift toward latent cooling is a challenge for heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems. Traditional systems typically dehumidify by first overcooling air below the dew-point temperature and then reheating it to an appropriate supply temperature, which requires an excessive amount of energy. Another dehumidification strategy incorporates solid desiccant rotors that remove water from air more efficiently; however, these systems are large and increase fan energy consumption due to the increased airside pressure drop of solid desiccant rotors. A third dehumidification strategy involves high flow liquid desiccant systems. These systems require a high maintenance separator to protect the air distribution system from corrosive desiccant droplet carryover and so are more commonly used in industrial applications and rarely in commercial buildings. Both solid desiccant systems and most high-flow liquid desiccant systems (if not internally cooled) add sensible energy which must later be removed to the air stream during dehumidification, through the release of sensible heat during the sorption process.
This project was part of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Commercial Buildings Partnerships. Companies and organizations, selected through a competitive process, teamed with DOE, national laboratory staff, and technical experts from the private sector who provided technical expertise to explore energy-saving ideas and strategies that were applied to specific building projects and that could be replicated across the market. The work presented here focuses on reducing energy use in supermarkets.
NREL contracted with the Energy Center of Wisconsin to review the Commercial Building Partnerships projects and identify and compile the best practices for ten energy conservation measures that were tested in those projects. The resulting compilation is presented in this report.
Commercial mortgages currently do not fully account for energy factors in underwriting, valuation and asset management, particularly as it relates to the impact of energy costs on net operating income. As a consequence, energy efficiency is not properly valued and energy risks are not properly assessed and mitigated. Commercial mortgages are a large lever and could be a significant channel for scaling energy efficiency investments.
Work with the buildings industry to develop and maintain data, methods, and tools to understand and improve the sustainability of buildings at a fundamental level and continue to develop and support the U.S. Life Cycle Inventory (LCI) Database, which provides the starting point for LCA.
Following the tornado in 2007, Greensburg made a commitment to rebuilding green. The case studies in this database offer examples of projects that have been rebuilt, and include stories about public, private single-family residential, multi-family residential, and commercial buildings.
This Technical Support Document (TSD) describes the process and methodology for development of the Advanced Energy Design Guide for Small Warehouse and Self-storage Buildings (AEDG-WH or the Guide), a design guidance document intended to provide recommendations for achieving 30% energy savings in small warehouses over levels contained in ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-1999, Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings.