Integrated Energy Analysis and Validation Environment

Award Information
Department of Energy
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Phase I
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Small Business Information
Energy Analytics LLC
25 Zachary Drive, Avon, CT, 06001-3181
Hubzone Owned:
Woman Owned:
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged:
Principal Investigator
 Michael Sahm
 () -
Business Contact
 Michael Sahm
Title: Dr.
Phone: (860) 899-6481
Research Institution
A great deal of progress has been made in delivery of highly mature building systems energy simulation tools. However, application of these highly sophisticated methods tends to remain limited to a relatively small population of high profile buildings. Elements that influence this limitation include the time required to formulate an appropriate building system model, the time required to execute the model applying a sufficiently wide set of energy measures and, the time required to validate model results against actual system performance in the as-built systems. Further, in the majority of cases, the final step of model verification is abbreviated or not performed and the possibly most valuable verification step is omitted. As an example of this lost opportunity and perceived impact, one of the harshest criticisms of the LEED certification practice is that buildings designed to be very high performance often under-deliver, leading critics to claim that sustainable design in general has no merit. Very impressive advances have been made recently in addressing the labor burden associated with the mechanics of model creation and use. The development of the Open Studio framework and associated simulation tools greatly accelerates creation of initial models and execution of sets of parametric cases that can inform new building design. However, a gap still remains between high performance design intent and verification of outcome in the as-built systems. To address this gap between design intent and achieved performance, Energy Analytics will develop an integrated energy analysis and validation environment that encompasses all phases of building life cycle from initial concept development through post occupancy measurement and verification. This fully integrated analytical feedback environment will enable informed operations decisions by providing critical quantitative data and full visibility into energy use and cost impact associated with operations behavioral choices. The proposed integrated validation environment will be built upon extensive DOE investments made in OpenStudio and associated tools. Energy Analytics, LLC will utilize the integrated open tool interfaces in the OpenStudio platform, including use of EnergyPlus as the core energy simulation engine to demonstrate closed loop communications with building automation systems to provide a fully integrated life cycle approach enabling dynamic model based measurement and verification and allowing use of full feature energy simulation to provide operations guidance and feedback control. This holistic simulation and verification environment is expected to be embraced by building designers and sustainable design and energy services practitioners to extend their range of capability and deliver energy cost savings to building owners and end users.

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