Completed in August of 1996, the 10,000 square-foot Thermal Test Facility (TTF) was constructed to consolidate the National Renewable Energy Laboratory's (NREL) active solar, passive solar, and ventilation test facilities in a central location.
The TTF is an open-space, high-bay area containing various laboratories and research equipment. The facility's layout gives researchers flexibility to easily rearrange experiments. An open plan office area provides workspaces for researchers. The building itself serves as an important research test bed for investigating the integration of passive-solar and energy-efficiency technologies.
The main environmental benefit of the building is its significant reduction in energy use. A thorough analysis has shown that the TTF use 63% less energy, by cost, than an equivalent code-compliant building for heating, ventilating, air-conditioning, and lighting.