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Energy Modeling

Energy Modeling

Building energy modeling is becoming an essential element in the design process and is increasingly considered part of standard architectural services.

Our building energy modeling encompasses three services:


Building Energy Modeling (BEM)

Building Energy Modeling (BEM) predicts a building’s anticipated energy use and corresponding energy savings, as compared to a standard baseline. In so doing, it demonstrates the project’s compliance with LEED requirements.

BEM predicts energy performance based on Typical Meteorological Year (TMY) data, as well as assumptions about building operation and maintenance. Accordingly, the prediction is only as accurate as the assumptions, which should be documented and understood by the project team as well as the client, the building operator, and the end users. Changes made during the design and construction process should be used to update the BEM and to increase its utility and predictive accuracy.

BEM is required for compliance withthe Energy and Atmosphere Prerequisite 2 Minimum Energy Performance, and Credit 1 Optimize Energy Performance in LEED Version 3, and the Energy and Atmosphere Prerequisite 2 Minimum Energy Performance, and Credit 2 Optimize Energy Performance in LEED Version 4.

Design Performance Modeling (DPM)

A Design Performance Modeling (DPM) informs design decisions by predicting a building´s performance in terms of energy efficiency. It is typically prepared during the early stages of design, before engineering systems are incorporated. Its analysis of energy use is accordingly less complex and time consuming than that of Building Energy Modeling, allowing  for a more rapid exploration of a greater number of parameters, which may include architectural form impacts, window-to-wall ratio implications, glazing and shading options, R-values of walls, etc.

Design Performance Modeling allows cost, aesthetics, and performance to be given value and discussed among the project team and with the client in almost real time. DPM is required for compliance with the Integrative Process Credit 1 in LEED Version 4.

The benefits of applying Design Performance Modeling (DPM) with Green Living Projects include:

  • Achieving energy balance within the project’s facilities and structural elements.
  • Identifying energy inputs and areas of opportunity for intervention.
  • Determining and economically evaluating the return on investment (ROI) of energy efficiency strategies and selecting the most profitable.

Building Operation Modeling (BOM)

Building Operation Modeling (BOM) introduces actual utility bills, use patterns, hours of operation, functioning of systems, and real weather conditions for a completed building into a model structured similarly to the Building Energy Model. It thereby allows the comparison of actual energy use with predicted use. This comparison can be used to determine the causes of discrepancies between predicted energy use and actual energy use, which in turn facilitates the tuning of systems to better meet—or even exceed—the design goals.

The process of comparison of the BEM and the BOM is known as “calibrated simulation” or Measurement & Verification (M&V ASHRAE Guideline 14 and the USDOE’s International Performance Measurement & Verification Protocol (IPMVP)) and it provides the currently agreed methods for this type of work. BOM is required for compliance with the Energy and Atmosphere Credit 5 Measurement and Verification in LEED Version 3.

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