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Title: Understanding Building Infrastructure and Building Operation through DOE Asset Score Model: Lessons Learned from a Pilot Project

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) is developing a national voluntary energy asset score system to help building owners to evaluate the as-built physical characteristics (including building envelope, the mechanical and electrical systems) and overall building energy efficiency, independent of occupancy and operational choices. The energy asset score breaks down building energy use information by simulating building performance under typical operating and occupancy conditions for a given use type. A web-based modeling tool, the energy asset score tool facilitates the implementation of the asset score system. The tool consists of a simplified user interface built on a centralized simulation engine (EnergyPlus). It is intended to reduce both the implementation cost for the users and increase modeling standardization compared with an approach that requires users to build their own energy models. A pilot project with forty-two buildings (consisting mostly offices and schools) was conducted in 2012. This paper reports the findings. Participants were asked to collect a minimum set of building data and enter it into the asset score tool. Participants also provided their utility bills, existing ENERGY STAR scores, and previous energy audit/modeling results if available. The results from the asset score tool were compared with the building energy usemore » data provided by the pilot participants. Three comparisons were performed. First, the actual building energy use, either from the utility bills or via ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, was compared with the modeled energy use. It was intended to examine how well the energy asset score represents a building’s system efficiencies, and how well it is correlated to a building’s actual energy consumption. Second, calibrated building energy models (where they exist) were used to examine any discrepancies between the asset score model and the pilot participant buildings’ [known] energy use pattern. This comparison examined the end use breakdowns and more detailed time series data. Third, ASHRAE 90.1 prototype buildings were also used as an industry standard modeling approach to test the accuracy level of the asset score tool. Our analysis showed that the asset score tool, which uses simplified building simulation, could provide results comparable to a more detailed energy model. The buildings’ as-built efficiency can be reflected in the energy asset score. An analysis between the modeled energy use through the asset score tool and the actual energy use from the utility bills can further inform building owners about the effectiveness of their building’s operation and maintenance.« less
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Resource Type:
Journal Article
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Journal Name: ASHRAE Transactions, 119(pt. 2):Paper No. DE-13-C030
Research Org:
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), Richland, WA (US)
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Country of Publication:
United States