Achieving Optimal Performance for your Buildings

By Don McLean on Monday 4 December 2017

I can make 100% energy savings on any building.  How?  By removing all heating and cooling equipment and all electrical supply to the building.

‘Wait’, I hear you say, ‘you cannot take away all energy because we need energy in its various forms to live and work’.  OK so you need some energy but does that mean it is energy consumption as usual?

So what if we take a different approach…  What if the building user could define the ‘Optimal Performance’ of their building?  What are the conditions they are willing to accept?  For example: energy consumption at 50% of building regulations; occupancy comfort of over 90% comfort; air quality at healthy levels; operation costs 40% less than standard costs; etc.  How would you make these kind of assessments?  Even more complex – how could we achieve the simultaneous optimal performance of all of these factors and more?

This would be transformational for your costs, sustainability objectives and staff wellbeing.

But how could this be achieved?

When designing buildings today, we should always be striving to achieve the Optimal Performance of the building.  Not just for the obvious environmental reasons, but also to reduce running costs, increase energy efficiency and provide good occupant wellbeing among other reasons.

IES has the technology that allows you to weigh the importance of a whole range of factors relating to your buildings’ performance. 

This sounds attractive.  However, the Optimal Performance of a building is dynamic – it could change season to season; day to day; and company to company.  It will also be different for building owners and occupiers.  But with a sensible approach and with good quality information it would be possible to define an acceptable Optimal Performance to operate the building.

So how can we help define and prove Optimal Performance?

In my view, the only way is to have the decision support technology that can properly assess all the required performance factors to provide accurate answers on how to achieve Optimal Performance.

IES has the technology that allows you to weigh the importance of a whole range of factors relating to your buildings’ performance. This isn’t something that can be guessed, it requires good building simulation analytics.  With this capability you can predict how much closer you can get to the Optimal Performance by analysing different equipment, operational changes, etc. and seeing how the different options impact a buildings performance.

Achieving Optimal Performance through detailed building analytics is not difficult to do. Like anything worthwhile there is a learning curve, but with a little practice it is actually a lot simpler than most people think and the benefits are endless.  The IES Virtual Environment (IESVE) allows you to make these holistic assessments to help establish Optimal Performance.

By taking this approach to building performance we can make a profound difference to sustainability, carbon reductions, energy reductions, reducing energy costs, better occupant comfort and much more.