This spring CBE’s research team received funding to support two new projects that will create new ways to gather, analyze and monetize data from commercial buildings, yielding energy cost savings and more comfort for building users.
Category: HVAC Research
CBE has released an interactive web-based tool for the early phases of design of high thermal mass radiant systems, that may be used to predict steady-state conditions for both heating and cooling modes, greatly facilitating a standard design practice. However it can also predict dynamic (transient) performance for cooling, taking into account the effects of changing loads and the effects of thermal mass of the building structure.
At the 2019 ASHRAE Winter Conference on January 12th-16th, several CBE faculty, researchers, students and alumni will present recent results and demonstrate new design tools. For those of you not able to attend you can view the PDFs in this blog post.
Project Scientist Fred Bauman recently received the ASHRAE Fellow award, a recognition for those who have distinguished themselves in the HVAC industry. His contributions are based on the extensive research on UFAD that he directed at CBE, leading to deeper knowledge and guidance for these advanced HVAC systems. Recently, he has led a similar efforts to address thermally massive radiant systems.
CBE research has quantified what we all know intuitively: ceiling fans can provide acceptable comfort at temperatures that otherwise would be stifling. This enables passive solutions in milder climates, and may reduce the reliance on air conditioning in climates where passive solutions alone are not sufficient.
This April, CBE welcomed to its consortium Sanken, a Japan-based engineering leader that will collaborate with researchers at CBE and overseas on radiant cooling technologies. This new collaboration builds on Sanken’s efforts that span several decades to innovate and provide customers with reliable and advanced systems and facilities.
An important goal at CBE is to provide tools to assist industry professionals to create energy efficient and comfortable buildings. In 2013 we first launched the online CBE Thermal Comfort Tool as a way to help practitioners predict thermal comfort in buildings, based on ASHRAE Standard 55. We are excited to announce expanded capabilities in the most recent version of the tool.
CBE’s “Changing the Rules” Demonstrates an Occupant-Based Paradigm for HVAC Control for Energy Savings and Improved Thermal Comfort
CBE’s research team recently completed a project with goals of making buildings occupant-responsive in real time, and addressing outdated rules-of-thumb that lead to poor energy performance and occupant comfort. Findings demonstrated that “personal comfort” chairs led to comfort satisfaction for nearly all test subjects. The project team also developed and tested innovative HVAC control methods offering significant energy saving potential.
An expected benefit of IoT in buildings will come from an improved ability to monitor indoor environments in ways that lead to actionable insights. A panel session hosted by CBE explored three innovative methods to monitor buildings using the latest in sensing and communicating technologies. The ideas range from futuristic to immediately applicable, with a focus on measuring CO2.
As part of a four-year study on the design and operation of radiant systems, CBE collaborated with NBI and TRC Energy Services to complete nine case studies of commercial buildings that demonstrate good performance in terms of both energy performance and occupant satisfaction in buildings with radiant systems. The projects represent diverse approaches to radiant system design, including in-slab and ceiling panel solutions.