This Fact Sheet provides an overview of the Better Buildings Workforce Guidelines project. The Department of Energy (DOE) and the National Institute of Building Sciences (NIBS) are working with industry stakeholders to develop voluntary national guidelines that will improve the quality and consistency of commercial building workforce training and certification programs for five key energy-related jobs.
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A case study of the overview, process, and results of the re-tuning that was conducted in a building in Arlington, Virginia by Vornado Realty Trust in October 2012. Re-tuning provided the facilities management team with the ability to identify and understand building scheduling opportunities that drove significant, low-cost energy savings. Five measures were conducted, many of which pertained to the HVAC system.
Tower Companies, a DC based owner of large multi-tenant buildings and Better Buildings Challenge partner, engaged in an aggressive program to take measured data from their buildings and turn it into real energy savings. This case study, completed by Tower in partnership with the National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) describes outcomes at three properties. The case study was highlighted on a Better Buildings Webinar on February 5, 2014.
The lack of empirical data on the energy performance of buildings is a key barrier to accelerating the energy efficiency retrofit market. The DOE’s Buildings Performance Database (BPD) helps address this gap by allowing users to perform exploratory analyses on an anonymous dataset of hundreds of thousands of commercial and residential buildings. These analyses enable market actors to assess energy efficiency opportunities, forecast project performance, and quantify performance risk using empirical building data. In this paper, we describe the process of collecting and preparing data for the database, and present a peer-group analysis tool that allows users to analyze building performance for narrowly defined subsets of the database, or peer groups. We use this tool to explore a case study of a multifamily portfolio owner comparing his buildings’ performance to the peer group of multifamily buildings in the local metro area. We also present a performance comparison tool that uses statistical methods to estimate the expected change in energy performance due to changes in building-component technologies. We demonstrate a low-effort retrofit analysis, providing a probabilistic estimate of energy savings for a sample building retrofit. The key advantages of this approach compared to conventional engineering models are that it provides probabilistic risk analysis based on actual
measured data and can significantly reduce transaction costs for predicting savings across a portfolio.
The Smart Monitoring and Diagnostic System (SMDS) is a low-cost technology that helps building owners and managers keep rooftop air conditioner and heat pump units (RTUs) operating properly at peak efficiency. The SMDS technology has the potential to significantly benefit small commercial buildings, which predominately use RTUs for space conditioning. Through the Better Buildings Alliance, a field demonstration was conducted at four sites using two SMDS prototypes. This case study provides a summary of the field demonstration results.
The full report is available at: https://buildingdata.energy.gov/cbrd/resource/1927
Software environment that supports the integration of multiple building models and databases used by analysis and visualization tools, through a single, object-based representation of building components and systems. BDA (Building Design Advisor) acts as a data manager and process controller, allowing building designers to benefit from the capabilities of multiple analysis and visualization tools throughout the building design process. BDA is implemented as a Windows-based application. The current version includes links to a simplified Daylighting Computation Module (DCM), a simplified Electric lighting Computation Module (ECM), and the DOE-2.1E Building Energy Simulation software.
EnergyPlus Example File Generator's web-based forms allow users to enter general information about buildings they want to model. The application then automatically creates a complete EnergyPlus input file, runs an annual simulation, and then emails users the EnergyPlus input, output, DXF and other files along with an annual summary of the energy results.
The Lighting Project Evaluator provides actionable "how to" guidance on ways to improve your building interior lighting efficiency and reduce your energy consumption, without compromising quality design criteria. Strategies include the use of high performance commercially available products, daylighting, and lighting controls, all within the context of integrated designs supported by performance specifications.
The UAC Cost Estimator provides an alternative to complicated building simulation models, while offering more detail than simplified estimating tools that are commonly available. The estimator accounts for local climate and partial-load, as well as full-load efficiencies. It also helps building owners and operators as they purchase or replace packaged rooftop air conditioning equipment by estimating a product's lifetime energy cost savings at various efficiency levels.
The Outdoor Air Economizer (OAE) diagnostic module monitors the performance of air-handling units and can detect over 20 different basic operation problems with outside-air control and economizer operation.