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Title: Integrated Heat Pump HVAC Systems for Near-Zero-Energy Homes - Business Case Assessment

Abstract

The long range strategic goal of the Department of Energy's Building Technologies (DOE/BT) Program is to create, by 2020, technologies and design approaches that enable the construction of net-zero energy homes at low incremental cost (DOE/BT 2005). A net zero energy home (NZEH) is a residential building with greatly reduced needs for energy through efficiency gains, with the balance of energy needs supplied by renewable technologies. While initially focused on new construction, these technologies and design approaches are intended to have application to buildings constructed before 2020 as well resulting in substantial reduction in energy use for all building types and ages. DOE/BT's Emerging Technologies (ET) team is working to support this strategic goal by identifying and developing advanced heating, ventilating, air-conditioning, and water heating (HVAC/WH) technology options applicable to NZEHs. Although the energy efficiency of heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) equipment has increased substantially in recent years, new approaches are needed to continue this trend. Dramatic efficiency improvements are necessary to enable progress toward the NZEH goals, and will require a radical rethinking of opportunities to improve system performance. The large reductions in HVAC energy consumption necessary to support the NZEH goals require a systems-oriented analysis approach that characterizesmore » each element of energy consumption, identifies alternatives, and determines the most cost-effective combination of options. In particular, HVAC equipment must be developed that addresses the range of special needs of NZEH applications in the areas of reduced HVAC and water heating energy use, humidity control, ventilation, uniform comfort, and ease of zoning. In FY05 ORNL conducted an initial Stage 1 (Applied Research) scoping assessment of HVAC/WH systems options for future NZEHs to help DOE/BT identify and prioritize alternative approaches for further development. Eleven system concepts with central air distribution ducting and nine multi-zone systems were selected and their annual and peak demand performance estimated for five locations: Atlanta (mixed-humid), Houston (hot-humid), Phoenix (hot-dry), San Francisco (marine), and Chicago (cold). Performance was estimated by simulating the systems using the TRNSYS simulation engine (Solar Energy Laboratory et al. 2006) in two 1800-ft{sup 2} houses--a Building America (BA) benchmark house and a prototype NZEH taken from BEopt results at the take-off (or crossover) point (i.e., a house incorporating those design features such that further progress towards ZEH is through the addition of photovoltaic power sources, as determined by current BEopt analyses conducted by NREL). Results were summarized in a project report, 'HVAC Equipment Design options for Near-Zero-Energy Homes--A Stage 2 Scoping Assessment', ORNL/TM-2005/194 (Baxter 2005). The 2005 study report describes the HVAC options considered, the ranking criteria used, and the system rankings by priority. Table 1 summarizes the energy savings potential of the highest scoring options from the 2005 study for all five locations. All system options were scored by the ORNL building equipment research team and by William Goetzler of Navigant Consulting. These scores were reviewed by DOE/BT's Residential Integration program leaders and Building America team members. Based on these results, the two centrally ducted integrated heat pump (IHP) systems (air source and ground source versions) were selected for advancement to Stage 2 (Exploratory Development) business case assessments in FY06. This report describes results of these business case assessments. It is a compilation of three separate reports describing the initial business case study (Baxter 2006a), an update to evaluate the impact of an economizer cooling option (Baxter 2006b), and a second update to evaluate the impact of a winter humidification option (Baxter 2007). In addition it reports some corrections made subsequent to release of the first two reports to correct some errors in the TRNSYS building model for Atlanta and in the refrigerant pressure drop calculation in the water-to-refrigerant evaporator module of the ORNL Heat Pump Design Model (HPDM) used for the IHP analyses. These changes resulted in some minor differences between IHP performance as reported in Baxter (2006a, b) and in this report.« less

Authors:
 [1]
  1. ORNL
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Oak Ridge National Lab. (ORNL), Oak Ridge, TN (United States); Building Technologies Research and Integration Center
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE)
OSTI Identifier:
932624
Report Number(s):
ORNL/TM-2007/064
BT0302000; CEBT002; TRN: US200814%%739
DOE Contract Number:
DE-AC05-00OR22725
Resource Type:
Technical Report
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
32 ENERGY CONSERVATION, CONSUMPTION, AND UTILIZATION; AIR CONDITIONING; BENCHMARKS; BUSINESS; CONSTRUCTION; ECONOMIZERS; ENERGY CONSUMPTION; ENERGY EFFICIENCY; ENGINES; EVAPORATORS; HEAT PUMPS; HEATING; HUMIDITY CONTROL; HVAC SYSTEMS; PRESSURE DROP; RADICALS; REFRIGERANTS; RESIDENTIAL BUILDINGS; VENTILATION; WATER HEATING

Citation Formats

Baxter, Van D. Integrated Heat Pump HVAC Systems for Near-Zero-Energy Homes - Business Case Assessment. United States: N. p., 2007. Web. doi:10.2172/932624.
Baxter, Van D. Integrated Heat Pump HVAC Systems for Near-Zero-Energy Homes - Business Case Assessment. United States. doi:10.2172/932624.
Baxter, Van D. Tue . "Integrated Heat Pump HVAC Systems for Near-Zero-Energy Homes - Business Case Assessment". United States. doi:10.2172/932624. https://www.osti.gov/servlets/purl/932624.
@article{osti_932624,
title = {Integrated Heat Pump HVAC Systems for Near-Zero-Energy Homes - Business Case Assessment},
author = {Baxter, Van D},
abstractNote = {The long range strategic goal of the Department of Energy's Building Technologies (DOE/BT) Program is to create, by 2020, technologies and design approaches that enable the construction of net-zero energy homes at low incremental cost (DOE/BT 2005). A net zero energy home (NZEH) is a residential building with greatly reduced needs for energy through efficiency gains, with the balance of energy needs supplied by renewable technologies. While initially focused on new construction, these technologies and design approaches are intended to have application to buildings constructed before 2020 as well resulting in substantial reduction in energy use for all building types and ages. DOE/BT's Emerging Technologies (ET) team is working to support this strategic goal by identifying and developing advanced heating, ventilating, air-conditioning, and water heating (HVAC/WH) technology options applicable to NZEHs. Although the energy efficiency of heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) equipment has increased substantially in recent years, new approaches are needed to continue this trend. Dramatic efficiency improvements are necessary to enable progress toward the NZEH goals, and will require a radical rethinking of opportunities to improve system performance. The large reductions in HVAC energy consumption necessary to support the NZEH goals require a systems-oriented analysis approach that characterizes each element of energy consumption, identifies alternatives, and determines the most cost-effective combination of options. In particular, HVAC equipment must be developed that addresses the range of special needs of NZEH applications in the areas of reduced HVAC and water heating energy use, humidity control, ventilation, uniform comfort, and ease of zoning. In FY05 ORNL conducted an initial Stage 1 (Applied Research) scoping assessment of HVAC/WH systems options for future NZEHs to help DOE/BT identify and prioritize alternative approaches for further development. Eleven system concepts with central air distribution ducting and nine multi-zone systems were selected and their annual and peak demand performance estimated for five locations: Atlanta (mixed-humid), Houston (hot-humid), Phoenix (hot-dry), San Francisco (marine), and Chicago (cold). Performance was estimated by simulating the systems using the TRNSYS simulation engine (Solar Energy Laboratory et al. 2006) in two 1800-ft{sup 2} houses--a Building America (BA) benchmark house and a prototype NZEH taken from BEopt results at the take-off (or crossover) point (i.e., a house incorporating those design features such that further progress towards ZEH is through the addition of photovoltaic power sources, as determined by current BEopt analyses conducted by NREL). Results were summarized in a project report, 'HVAC Equipment Design options for Near-Zero-Energy Homes--A Stage 2 Scoping Assessment', ORNL/TM-2005/194 (Baxter 2005). The 2005 study report describes the HVAC options considered, the ranking criteria used, and the system rankings by priority. Table 1 summarizes the energy savings potential of the highest scoring options from the 2005 study for all five locations. All system options were scored by the ORNL building equipment research team and by William Goetzler of Navigant Consulting. These scores were reviewed by DOE/BT's Residential Integration program leaders and Building America team members. Based on these results, the two centrally ducted integrated heat pump (IHP) systems (air source and ground source versions) were selected for advancement to Stage 2 (Exploratory Development) business case assessments in FY06. This report describes results of these business case assessments. It is a compilation of three separate reports describing the initial business case study (Baxter 2006a), an update to evaluate the impact of an economizer cooling option (Baxter 2006b), and a second update to evaluate the impact of a winter humidification option (Baxter 2007). In addition it reports some corrections made subsequent to release of the first two reports to correct some errors in the TRNSYS building model for Atlanta and in the refrigerant pressure drop calculation in the water-to-refrigerant evaporator module of the ORNL Heat Pump Design Model (HPDM) used for the IHP analyses. These changes resulted in some minor differences between IHP performance as reported in Baxter (2006a, b) and in this report.},
doi = {10.2172/932624},
journal = {},
number = ,
volume = ,
place = {United States},
year = {Tue May 01 00:00:00 EDT 2007},
month = {Tue May 01 00:00:00 EDT 2007}
}

Technical Report:

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  • The long range strategic goal of the Department of Energy's Building Technologies (DOE/BT) Program is to create, by 2020, technologies and design approaches that enable the construction of net-zero energy homes at low incremental cost (DOE/BT 2005). A net zero energy home (NZEH) is a residential building with greatly reduced needs for energy through efficiency gains, with the balance of energy needs supplied by renewable technologies. While initially focused on new construction, these technologies and design approaches are intended to have application to buildings constructed before 2020 as well resulting in substantial reduction in energy use for all building typesmore » and ages. DOE/BT's Emerging Technologies (ET) team is working to support this strategic goal by identifying and developing advanced heating, ventilating, air-conditioning, and water heating (HVAC/WH) technology options applicable to NZEHs. In FY05 ORNL conducted an initial Stage 1 (Applied Research) scoping assessment of HVAC/WH systems options for future NZEHs to help DOE/BT identify and prioritize alternative approaches for further development. Eleven system concepts with central air distribution ducting and nine multi-zone systems were selected and their annual and peak demand performance estimated for five locations: Atlanta (mixed-humid), Houston (hot-humid), Phoenix (hot-dry), San Francisco (marine), and Chicago (cold). Performance was estimated by simulating the systems using the TRNSYS simulation engine (Solar Energy Laboratory et al. 2006) in two 1800-ft{sup 2} houses--a Building America (BA) benchmark house and a prototype NZEH taken from BEopt results at the take-off (or crossover) point (i.e., a house incorporating those design features such that further progress towards ZEH is through the addition of photovoltaic power sources, as determined by current BEopt analyses conducted by NREL). Results were summarized in a project report, HVAC Equipment Design options for Near-Zero-Energy Homes--A Stage 2 Scoping Assessment, ORNL/TM-2005/194 (Baxter 2005). The 2005 study report describes the HVAC options considered, the ranking criteria used, and the system rankings by priority. In 2006, the two top-ranked options from the 2005 study, air-source and ground-source versions of a centrally ducted integrated heat pump (IHP) system, were subjected to an initial business case study. The IHPs were subjected to a more rigorous hourly-based assessment of their performance potential compared to a baseline suite of equipment of legally minimum efficiency that provided the same heating, cooling, water heating, demand dehumidification, and ventilation services as the IHPs. Results were summarized in a project report, Initial Business Case Analysis of Two Integrated Heat Pump HVAC Systems for Near-Zero-Energy Homes, ORNL/TM-2006/130 (Baxter 2006a). The present report is an update to that document which summarizes results of an analysis of the impact of adding a humidifier to the HVAC system to maintain minimum levels of space relative humidity (RH) in winter. The space RH in winter has direct impact on occupant comfort and on control of dust mites, many types of disease bacteria, and 'dry air' electric shocks. Chapter 8 in ASHRAE's 2005 Handbook of Fundamentals (HOF) suggests a 30% lower limit on RH for indoor temperatures in the range of {approx}68-69F based on comfort (ASHRAE 2005). Table 3 in chapter 9 of the same reference suggests a 30-55% RH range for winter as established by a Canadian study of exposure limits for residential indoor environments (EHD 1987). Harriman, et al (2001) note that for RH levels of 35% or higher, electrostatic shocks are minimized and that dust mites cannot live at RH levels below 40%. They also indicate that many disease bacteria life spans are minimized when space RH is held within a 30-60% range. From the foregoing it is reasonable to assume that a winter space RH range of 30-40% would be an acceptable compromise between comfort considerations and limitation of growth rates for dust mites and many bacteria. In addition it reports some corrections made to the simulation models used in order to correct some errors in the TRNSYS building model for Atlanta and in the refrigerant pressure drop calculation in the water-to-refrigerant evaporator module of the ORNL Heat Pump Design Model (HPDM) used for the IHP analyses. These changes resulted in some minor differences between IHP performance as reported in Baxter (2006) and in this report.« less
  • The long range strategic goal of the Department of Energy's Building Technologies (DOE/BT) Program is to create, by 2020, technologies and design approaches that enable the construction of net-zero energy homes at low incremental cost (DOE/BT 2005). A net zero energy home (NZEH) is a residential building with greatly reduced needs for energy through efficiency gains, with the balance of energy needs supplied by renewable technologies. While initially focused on new construction, these technologies and design approaches are intended to have application to buildings constructed before 2020 as well resulting in substantial reduction in energy use for all building typesmore » and ages. DOE/BT's Emerging Technologies (ET) team is working to support this strategic goal by identifying and developing advanced heating, ventilating, air-conditioning, and water heating (HVAC/WH) technology options applicable to NZEHs. Although the energy efficiency of heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) equipment has increased substantially in recent years, new approaches are needed to continue this trend. Dramatic efficiency improvements are necessary to enable progress toward the NZEH goals, and will require a radical rethinking of opportunities to improve system performance. The large reductions in HVAC energy consumption necessary to support the NZEH goals require a systems-oriented analysis approach that characterizes each element of energy consumption, identifies alternatives, and determines the most cost-effective combination of options. In particular, HVAC equipment must be developed that addresses the range of special needs of NZEH applications in the areas of reduced HVAC and water heating energy use, humidity control, ventilation, uniform comfort, and ease of zoning. In FY05 ORNL conducted an initial Stage 1 (Applied Research) scoping assessment of HVAC/WH systems options for future NZEHs to help DOE/BT identify and prioritize alternative approaches for further development. Eleven system concepts with central air distribution ducting and nine multi-zone systems were selected and their annual and peak demand performance estimated for five locations: Atlanta (mixed-humid), Houston (hot-humid), Phoenix (hot-dry), San Francisco (marine), and Chicago (cold). Performance was estimated by simulating the systems using the TRNSYS simulation engine (Solar Energy Laboratory et al. 2006) in two 1800-ft{sup 2} houses--a Building America (BA) benchmark house and a prototype NZEH taken from BEopt results at the take-off (or crossover) point (i.e., a house incorporating those design features such that further progress towards ZEH is through the addition of photovoltaic power sources, as determined by current BEopt analyses conducted by NREL). Results were summarized in a project report, HVAC Equipment Design options for Near-Zero-Energy Homes--A Stage 2 Scoping Assessment, ORNL/TM-2005/194 (Baxter 2005). The 2005 study report describes the HVAC options considered, the ranking criteria used, and the system rankings by priority. In 2006, the two top-ranked options from the 2005 study, air-source and ground-source versions of an integrated heat pump (IHP) system, were subjected to an initial business case study. The IHPs were subjected to a more rigorous hourly-based assessment of their performance potential compared to a baseline suite of equipment of legally minimum efficiency that provided the same heating, cooling, water heating, demand dehumidification, and ventilation services as the IHPs. Results were summarized in a project report, Initial Business Case Analysis of Two Integrated Heat Pump HVAC Systems for Near-Zero-Energy Homes, ORNL/TM-2006/130 (Baxter 2006). The present report is an update to that document. Its primary purpose is to summarize results of an analysis of the potential of adding an outdoor air economizer operating mode to the IHPs to take advantage of free cooling (using outdoor air to cool the house) whenever possible. In addition it provides some additional detail for an alternative winter water heating/space heating (WH/SH) control strategy briefly described in the original report and corrects some minor errors.« less
  • The long range strategic goal of the Department of Energy's Building Technologies (DOE/BT) Program is to create, by 2020, technologies and design approaches that enable the construction of net-zero energy homes at low incremental cost (DOE/BT 2005). A net zero energy home (NZEH) is a residential building with greatly reduced needs for energy through efficiency gains, with the balance of energy needs supplied by renewable technologies. While initially focused on new construction, these technologies and design approaches are intended to have application to buildings constructed before 2020 as well resulting in substantial reduction in energy use for all building typesmore » and ages. DOE/BT's Emerging Technologies (ET) team is working to support this strategic goal by identifying and developing advanced heating, ventilating, air-conditioning, and water heating (HVAC/WH) technology options applicable to NZEHs. Although the energy efficiency of heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) equipment has increased substantially in recent years, new approaches are needed to continue this trend. Dramatic efficiency improvements are necessary to enable progress toward the NZEH goals, and will require a radical rethinking of opportunities to improve system performance. The large reductions in HVAC energy consumption necessary to support the NZEH goals require a systems-oriented analysis approach that characterizes each element of energy consumption, identifies alternatives, and determines the most cost-effective combination of options. In particular, HVAC equipment must be developed that addresses the range of special needs of NZEH applications in the areas of reduced HVAC and water heating energy use, humidity control, ventilation, uniform comfort, and ease of zoning. In FY05 ORNL conducted an initial Stage 1 (Applied Research) scoping assessment of HVAC/WH systems options for future NZEHs to help DOE/BT identify and prioritize alternative approaches for further development. Eleven system concepts with central air distribution ducting and nine multi-zone systems were selected and their annual and peak demand performance estimated for five locations: Atlanta (mixed-humid), Houston (hot-humid), Phoenix (hot-dry), San Francisco (marine), and Chicago (cold). Performance was estimated by simulating the systems using the TRNSYS simulation engine (Solar Energy Laboratory et al. 2006) in two 1800-ft{sup 2} houses--a Building America (BA) benchmark house and a prototype NZEH taken from BEopt results at the take-off (or crossover) point (i.e., a house incorporating those design features such that further progress towards ZEH is through the addition of photovoltaic power sources, as determined by current BEopt analyses conducted by NREL). Results were summarized in a project report, 'HVAC Equipment Design options for Near-Zero-Energy Homes--A Stage 2 Scoping Assessment,' ORNL/TM-2005/194 (Baxter 2005). The 2005 study report describes the HVAC options considered, the ranking criteria used, and the system rankings by priority. Table 1 summarizes the energy savings potential of the highest scoring options from the 2005 study for all five locations.« less
  • Although the energy efficiency of heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) equipment has increased substantially in recent years, new approaches are needed to continue this trend. Conventional unitary equipment and system designs have matured to a point where cost-effective, dramatic efficiency improvements that meet near-zero-energy housing (NZEH) goals require a radical rethinking of opportunities to improve system performance. The large reductions in HVAC energy consumption necessary to support the NZEH goals require a systems-oriented analysis approach that characterizes each element of energy consumption, identifies alternatives, and determines the most cost-effective combination of options. In particular, HVAC equipment must be developed thatmore » addresses the range of special needs of NZEH applications in the areas of reduced HVAC and water heating energy use, humidity control, ventilation, uniform comfort, and ease of zoning. This report describes results of a scoping assessment of HVAC system options for NZEH homes. ORNL has completed a preliminary adaptation, for consideration by The U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office, Building Technologies (BT) Program, of Cooper's (2001) stage and gate planning process to the HVAC and Water Heating element of BT's multi-year plan, as illustrated in Figure 1. In order to adapt to R&D the Cooper process, which is focused on product development, and to keep the technology development process consistent with an appropriate role for the federal government, the number and content of the stages and gates needed to be modified. The potential federal role in technology development involves 6 stages and 7 gates, but depending on the nature and status of the concept, some or all of the responsibilities can flow to the private sector for product development beginning as early as Gate 3. In the proposed new technology development stage and gate sequence, the Stage 2 'Scoping Assessment' provides the deliverable leading into the Gate 3 'Scoping Assessment Screen'. This report is an example of a Stage 2 deliverable written to document the screening of options against the Gate 3 criteria and to support DOE decision making and option prioritization. The objective of this scoping assessment was to perform a transparent evaluation of the HVAC system options for NZEH based on the applying the Gate 3 criteria uniformly to all options.« less
  • The energy service needs of a net-zero-energy house (ZEH) include space heating and cooling, water heating, ventilation, dehumidification, and humidification, depending on the requirements of the specific location. These requirements differ in significant ways from those of current housing. For instance, the most recent DOE buildings energy data (DOE/BED 2007) indicate that on average {approx}43% of residential buildings primary energy use is for space heating and cooling, vs. {approx}12% for water heating (about a 3.6:1 ratio). In contrast, for the particular prototype ZEH structures used in the analyses in this report, that ratio ranges from about 0.3:1 to 1.6:1 dependingmore » on location. The high-performance envelope of a ZEH results in much lower space heating and cooling loads relative to current housing and also makes the house sufficiently air-tight to require mechanical ventilation for indoor air quality. These envelope characteristics mean that the space conditioning load will be closer in size to the water heating load, which depends on occupant behavior and thus is not expected to drop by any significant amount because of an improved envelope. In some locations such as the Gulf Coast area, additional dehumidification will almost certainly be required during the shoulder and cooling seasons. In locales with heavy space heating needs, supplemental humidification may be needed because of health concerns or may be desired for improved occupant comfort. The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has determined that achieving their ZEH goal will require energy service equipment that can meet these needs while using 50% less energy than current equipment. One promising approach to meeting this requirement is through an integrated heat pump (IHP) - a single system based on heat pumping technology. The energy benefits of an IHP stem from the ability to utilize otherwise wasted energy; for example, heat rejected by the space cooling operation can be used for water heating. With the greater energy savings the cost of the more energy efficient components required for the IHP can be recovered more quickly than if they were applied to individual pieces of equipment to meet each individual energy service need. An IHP can be designed to use either outdoor air or geothermal resources (e.g., ground, ground water, surface water) as the environmental energy source/sink. Based on a scoping study of a wide variety of possible approaches to meeting the energy service needs for a ZEH, DOE selected the IHP concept as the most promising and has supported research directed toward the development of both air- and ground-source versions. This report describes the ground-source IHP (GS-IHP) design and includes the lessons learned and best practices revealed by the research and development (R&D) effort throughout. Salient features of the GS-IHP include a variable-speed rotary compressor incorporating a brushless direct current permanent magnet motor which provides all refrigerant compression, a variable-speed fan for the indoor section, a multiple-speed ground coil circuit pump, and a single-speed pump for water heating operation. Laboratory IHP testing has thus far used R-22 because of the availability of the needed components that use this refrigerant. It is expected that HFC R-410A will be used for any products arising from the IHP concept. Data for a variable-speed compressor that uses R-410A has been incorporated into the DOE/ORNL Mark VI Heat Pump Design Model (HPDM). HPDM was then linked to TRNSYS, a time-series-dependent simulation model capable of determining the energy use of building cooling and heating equipment as applied to a defined house on a sub-hourly basis. This provided a highly flexible design analysis capability for advanced heat pump equipment; however, the program also took a relatively long time to run. This approach was used with the initial prototype design reported in Murphy et al. (2007a) and in the business case analysis of Baxter (2007).« less