» Building Design and Structure

Building America Best Practices Series: Volume 4; Builders and Buyers Handbook for Improving New Home Efficiency, Comfort, and Durability in the Mixed-Humid Climate

This best practices guide is part of a series produced by Building America. The guide book is a resource to help builders large and small build high-quality, energy-efficient homes that achieve 30% energy savings in space conditioning and water heating in the mixed-humid climate region. The savings are in comparison with the 1993 Model Energy Code. The guide contains chapters for every member of the builder’s team–from the manager to the site planner to the designers, site supervisors, the trades, and marketers. There is also a chapter for homeowners on how to use the book to provide help in selecting a new home or builder. Read More

Building America Best Practices Series: Volume 3; Builders and Buyers Handbook for Improving New Home Efficiency, Comfort, and Durability in Cold and Very Cold Climates

This best practices guide is part of a series produced by Building America. The guide book is a resource to help builders large and small build high-quality, energy-efficient homes that achieve 30% energy savings in space conditioning and water heating in the cold and very cold climates. The savings are in comparison with the 1993 Model Energy Code. The guide contains chapters for every member of the builder’s team-from the manager to the site planner to the designers, site supervisors, the trades, and marketers. There is also a chapter for homeowners on how to use the book to provide help in selecting a new home or builder. Read More

Building America Best Practices Series: Volume 2. Builders and Buyers Handbook for Improving New Home Efficiency, Comfort, and Durability in the Hot-Dry and Mixed-Dry Climates

This best practices guide is part of a series produced by Building America. The guidebook is a resource to help builders large and small build high-quality, energy-efficient homes that achieve 30% energy savings in space conditioning and water heating in the hot-dry and mixed-dry climates. The savings are in comparison with the 1993 Model Energy Code. The guide contains chapters for every member of the builder’s team–from the manager to the site planner to the designers, site supervisors, the trades, and marketers. There is also a chapter for homeowners on how to use the book to provide help in selecting a new home or builder. Read More

Building America Best Practices Series: Volume 1; Builders and Buyers Handbook for Improving New Home Efficiency, Comfort, and Durability in the Hot and Humid Climate

This Building America Best Practices guide book is a resource to help builders large and small build high-quality, energy-efficient homes that achieve 30% energy savings in space conditioning and water heating in the hot and humid climate. The savings are in comparison with the 1993 Model Energy Code. The guide contains chapters for every member of the builder’s team. There is also a chapter for homeowners on how to use the book to provide help in selecting a new home or builder. Read More

Ventilation Strategies in Weatherization

A six-page article. Some homes that are tight or even moderately leaky after weatherization measures have been installed may still need some type of spot source or whole house ventilation to help mitigate a moisture or indoor air quality problem. The need to install mechanical ventilation in weatherized homes will be the exception rather than the rule. A decision to ventilate or not will be driven by a number of factors including house tightness, high occupancy, and the level of existing or potential moisture problems. This is an often difficult thing to judge based on a one-time visit by an auditor. An auditor needs to be observant about existing conditions in the home and be knowledgeable enough to ask the right kinds of questions. Read More

Voltage Drop and Test Equipment

A four-page article. Many state, county, municipal, and electrical inspection agencies have utilized voltage drop testing protocols to evaluate the safety of wiring in buildings. There are several weatherization agencies within PA who have utilized diagnostic equipment such as the “SureTest Analyzer” to help them render decisions about the integrity of wiring circuits prior to installing insulation in wall and roof cavities. Read More

DElight: A Daylighting and Electric Lighting Simulation Engine

An eight-page building simulation paper. DElight is a simulation engine for daylight and electric lighting system analysis in buildings. DElight calculates interior illuminance levels from daylight, and the subsequent contribution required from electric lighting to meet a desired interior illuminance. DElight has been specifically designed to integrate with a building thermal simulation on a time-step basis, for whole-building analysis. This paper describes the simulation methods used in DElight and some of the key details of software implementation. Read More

Effects of External Shading Devices on Daylighting and Natural Ventilation

An eight-page building simulation paper. External shading devices have been utilized very extensively in residential buildings in the tropics to reduce the amount of solar radiation entering into the buildings. However, this will affect the availability of daylight for interior lighting as well as natural ventilation for passive cooling and thermal comfort. This paper discusses the impacts of six different types of external shading device on a residential building in Singapore. The investigation was carried out via the use of LIGHTSCAPE for daylighting simulations and PHOENICS CFD simulations for natural ventilation. From the series of parametric studies, the design of external shading devices to optimize daylighting and natural ventilation performance is developed. The interactions and the inter-relationship between daylighting and natural ventilation simulations that could affect the simulation results were also discussed. Lastly an actual field measurement was also conducted, which serves to provide data for the validation of simulation output. Refers to specific software tools that may not be available. Read More

Experience Testing EnergyPlus with the IEA HVAC BESTEST E100-E200 Series

An eight-page building simulation paper. The EnergyPlus building energy simulation software has been tested using the IEA HVAC BESTEST E100-E200 series of tests. The Volume 1 final report for the International Energy Agency (IEA) Building Energy Simulation Test and Diagnostic Method for Heating, Ventilating, and Air-Conditioning Equipment Models (HVAC BESTEST), was recently published in January 2002. HVAC BESTEST is a series of steady-state tests for a single-zone DX cooling system. Cases range from dry to wet coil, low to high part load, and low to high temperatures. This published test suite includes three sets of analytical solutions and results from several other simulation programs for comparison. Read More

Use of Simulation in the Design of a Large Naturally Ventilated Commercial Office Building

An eight-page building simulation paper. The design for the new Federal Building for San Francisco includes an office tower that is to be naturally ventilated. The EnergyPlus thermal simulation program was used to evaluate different ventilations strategies for space cooling and rationalize the design of the facade. The strategies include ventilation driven by different combination s of wind, internal stack and external stack. The simulation results indicate that wind-driven ventilation can maintain adequate comfort even during hot periods. Read More

Mission

EERL's mission is to be the best possible online collection of environmental and energy sustainability resources for community college educators and for their students. The resources are also available for practitioners and the public.

EERL & ATEEC

EERL is a product of a community college-based National Science Foundation Center, the Advanced Technology Environmental and Energy Center (ATEEC), and its partners.

Contact ATEEC 563.441.4087 or by email ateec@eicc.edu