Friday, June 27, 2014

Envelope Renovation Energy Modeling Comparison Presentation

By Mark Dunn, USGBC MA West Branch

Chapter members and guests gathered in Boston to hear from Nariman Mostafavi & Soroush Farzinmoghadam, Green Building Researchers at UMass AMherst. They presented their work to compare modeling exercises recently performed at UMass.

Three building analysis software tools, DOE-2 eQUEST, IESVE Revit Plug-in and Autodesk Green Building Studio, were used to quantify the predicted energy savings of a scheduled envelope retrofit on a UMass Amherst dormitory (Grayson Hall). The presentation included investigating the potential energy savings created by the removal and replacement of all original windows and exterior non-structural infill brick panels coupled with installation of supplementary insulation materials between the new brick panels and the interior CMU walls. The rehabilitation takes place in four 78,000 GSF seven-story residence halls originally constructed in 1965.

Analysis of the retrofit proposal was carried out by comparing the results of each retrofit design alternative against the baseline and assessing carbon dioxide emission reductions resulting from the proposed retrofit process. Advantages and disadvantages of each modeling tool were also discussed. The basic conclusion: for purposes of accurate modeling and ease of use, eQUEST continues to be the winner. It does not have the best-looking interface, but it turns out to be better to use, from their perspective. They will be comparing actual post-renovation energy use to their predictions this fall, and we anticipate a follow-up presentation on new results.

Thank you Nariman and Soroush!

Stay tuned to the USGBC MA as we bring you more presentations of academic research into the science of building performance.

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