Plug and process loads (PPLs) in commercial buildings account for almost 5% of U.S. primary energy consumption. Minimizing these loads is a primary challenge in the design and operation of an energy-efficient building. PPLs are not related to general lighting, heating, ventilation, cooling, and water heating, and typically do not provide comfort to the occupants. They use an increasingly large fraction of the building energy use pie because the number and variety of electrical devices have increased along with building system efficiency. Reducing PPLs is difficult because energy efficiency opportunities and the equipment needed to address PPL energy use in office spaces are poorly understood.
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The Research Support Facility was designed with energy efficiency and sustainability in mind. Many of its innovative technologies use passive and active processes to provide energy for its operations, such as electricity, heating, and cooling. The goal of this unique office building is to reach net zero energy use by engaging staff in best energy practices.
This checklist packet is a team-focused guide to realizing energy savings in high-performance office buildings through carefully considered lighting and control design. The checklists should be distributed among the integrated project team, including the owner, lighting designer and engineer, commissioning agent, and facility manager, at the beginning of a project and referred to regularly during design meetings and drawing reviews.
This guide provides design teams with best practices for parking structure energy efficiency in the form of goals for each design aspect that affects energy use.
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.
This report focuses on building envelopes that have been enhanced with phase change materials, which can simultaneously reduce total cooling loads and shift peak-hour loads.
"Why choose continuous insulation and air barriers? The biggest problem with many insulated buildings involves thermal bridging. These occur when poor thermal insulator materials meet, creating the path of least resistance for heat to pass through."
High performance or “Hi-R” windows use advanced technology to deliver up to a seven-fold improvement in a window’s thermal performance. At a GSA test bed location in Provo, Utah, Hi-R panel retrofits, which are installed on top of existing windows, reduced heating loads by up to 41%.
The shading chapter from "Tips for Daylighting with Windows"
The application of PCMs in buildings has significant potential to reduce energy consumption. However, because each PCM has its own phase change temperature, which is the temperature at which latent heat is absorbed or released, it is important to use an appropriate PCM for the purpose of building envelope design.