McGraw Hill Construction Continuing Education Article December 2010 - This article discusses the energy efficiency and cost competitiveness of the Research Support Facility.
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This conference paper discusses four well-documented definitions of net-zero energy: net-zero site energy, net-zero source energy, net-zero energy costs, and net-zero energy emissions, along with pluses and minuses of each.
This paper reviews the novel procurement, acquisition, and contract process of a large-scale replicable net zero energy (ZEB) office building. The owners (who are also commercial building energy efficiency researchers) developed and implemented an energy performance based design-build process to procure an office building with contractual requirements to meet demand side energy and LEED goals. The key procurement steps needed to ensure achievement of the energy efficiency and ZEB goals using a replicable delivery process are outlined.
This presentation highlights the importance of modeling the off-design performance of equipment in data centers as a consequence of their dynamic behavior and describes an experimentally validated tool for modeling the energy use of the data center and cooling infrastructure.
The Research Support Facility at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) is a 220,000-ft office building designed to serve 822 occupants, to use 35.1 kBtu/(ft2·yr), to use half the energy of an equivalent minimally code-compliant building, and eventually to produce as much renewable energy annually as it consumes. These goals and their substantiation through simulation were explicitly included in the fixed price design-build contract. The energy model had to be repeatedly updated to match design documents and the final building, as it was built, to the greatest degree practical. Computer modeling played a key role in diagnosing the energy impacts of program and decisions and in verifying that the contractual energy goals would be met within the specified budget. The primary tool used was a whole-building energy simulation program. Other simulation tools were used to provide more detail or to complement the primary tool as required by the delivery schedule, including tools to calculate thermal bridging, daylighting, natural ventilation, data center energy consumption, transpired solar collectors, thermal storage in the crawlspace, and electricity generation by photovoltaic panels. Results were either fed back into the main whole-building energy simulation tool or used to post-process model output to provide the most accurate annual simulations possible. This paper details the models used in the design process and how they informed important program and design decisions from design to completion.
This presentation shows how the Research Support Facility is a showcase for sustainable, high-performance design, how it incorporates the best in energy efficiency, environmental performance, and advanced controls using a “whole building” integrated design process, and serves as a model for cost-competitive, high-performance commercial buildings for the nation’s design construction, operation, and financing communities.
This case study details the design and operations of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) Research Support Facility data center and its contributions to energy efficiency.
This article describes many energy efficiency features of the Research Support Facility and the adjustments employees need to make.
This dynamic document provides background information to any potential audience of building re-tuning training. This document provides background information specifically geared toward small- to medium-sized commercial building operations. It introduces basic building energy terminology associated with building energy use to “prime” targeted participants to get the most out of the building re-tuning training. The intent is for participants who are less familiar with the concepts to review this material before taking the building re-tuning training class.
The primary audience for this instructor manual is the person who will be teaching the re-tuning course. In addition, community college instructors, retro-commissioning training providers and building operator training providers may find value in the material presented in this instructor manual as well. The purpose of this course is to help building operations staff to learn how to operate buildings more efficiently, reduce operating cost and provide energy savings. The knowledge and skills learned through the training will be highly valued by organizations and companies seeking to improve the performance of their buildings. Provides additional information on what to highlight in each of the small building re-tuning slides.