Digital Twin technology for decarbonising any built environment.
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Exceptional room & zone loads analysis for building & HVAC design.
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ASHRAE are one of the foremost industry pioneers in the decarbonization of the built environment and their new global Headquarters building in Atlanta, renovated to operate as a net-zero-energy (NZE) building, is testament to this. The project design team, which includes IESVE users, Integral Group, employed a range of innovative design strategies to achieve this net-zero energy ready building.
Along with some fellow ASHRAE Members of Technical Committee 4.1, I recently had the pleasure of doing some building performance analysis on this ASHRAE Headquarters building. From a simulation-aided design perspective, the following innovative categories from the project are worth highlighting.
(1) Net-Zero Energy Building
ASHRAE’s new headquarters is designed to operate as an all-electric at Net-Zero Energy (NZE) building, thanks to the installation of a 332-kW photovoltaic (PV) system. The PV system is a combination of three sub-arrays, which are sub-metered in the Building Energy Model shown below:
(2) Simulation throughout Design Phases
Thanks to the PV installation, a limiting Energy Use Intensity (EUI) of 21 kBtu/ft2 was targeted for this existing building refurbishment. Iterative design options throughout the design phases resulted in a range of low-energy solutions. These include:
(3) Optimized Load Calculations using the ASHRAE Heat Balance Method
For over 20 years, ASHRAE has recommended the Heat Balance (HB) Method as the preferred method for calculating heating & cooling loads. With such a low-energy target in mind, a considerate zoning strategy and accurate load calculations are very important. Included in the load’s analysis:
(4) Exceptional Daylight Performance (Spatial Daylight Autonomy, sDA)
Of the many daylighting metrics available, Spatial Daylight Autonomy (sDA) likely best considers the annual sufficiency of indoor daylight levels. In the in regularly occupied spaces of the ASHRAE HQ, the working plane analysis areas are considered for sDA, for the percentage that meets a minimum illuminance level of 300 lux, for 50% of the operational hours per year. The 18 new skylights provide an exceptional daylight performance, which is especially impressive considering the simultaneous requirements from a thermal/energy perspective.
Founded in 1894, ASHRAE is a global professional society committed to serve humanity by advancing the arts and sciences of heating ventilation, air conditioning, refrigeration and their allied fields. ASHRAE recently launched a Task Force for Building Decarbonization (TFBD), so they continue to demonstrate leadership and promote the organization’s mission.
To learn more about ASHRAE’s state-of-the-art, high-performing net-zero-energy efficient global headquarters building, go to ashrae.org/newhq and integralgroup.com/ashraehq.