February 24th 2021

EEnvest Project: Interview with Dimitris Ntimos

EEnvest Project: Interview with Dimitris Ntimos

EEnvest is a Horizon 2020 funded collaborative project, aiming to promote building energy efficiency investments. EEnvest will bridge the gap between building owners, interested in upgrading their buildings to consume less energy, and investors, that are willing to provide the capital investment and generate profit through energy bill savings following the retrofit.

IES' role in the project is to lead the development of the online software platform that will act as a marketplace, where owners seeking to renovate their building can register the details, enabling potential investors to easily assess potential investment risks. 

Dimitris Ntimos, Project Manager here at IES was interviewed for the latest issue of the EEnvest project newsletter, to explain the work that he is carrying out within the project.

Tell us about IES. What is your core business and role within the project?

IES is a leading global innovator of sustainable analysis technology for improving energy efficiency and indoor health and comfort in the built environment. Our technology provides decision makers with the information required to form intelligent solutions, by identifying the most effective and resource efficient ways in which they can dramatically reduce the use of energy and fossil fuels within a community. In EEnvest, IES is leading the development of the online software platform that will act as a marketplace, where building owners seeking to renovate their building can register and calculate their retrofit project’ details, enabling investors to easily assess potential investment risks.

What is the role of performance analysis technology in renovating buildings to become energy efficient and sustainable?

Renovations of existing buildings for energy efficiency are key to the decarbonisation targets, but often very complex. For example, a building that has been built more than 30 years ago, it is likely that all documentation is poor or lost, leading the renovation designers to make a lot of assumptions. Therefore, the risk of the renovation to fail is very high. Luckily, performance analysis technology nowadays is well advanced and can give access to a very powerful and accurate digital replica of a building. This is what we call the Digital Twin. It is an exact digital representation of the building, developed using real-life data from the actual building. In the hands of its users, the digital twin behaves exactly like its real-world counterpart and can predict its operational future. It can be used to quickly evaluate thousands of different renovation scenarios and allows making informed renovation decisions tailored and optimised to the needs of buildings and occupants. 

Can you explain how the investment evaluation platform, that you are developing and testing within the EEnvest project, works and what outcomes do you expect?

In EEnvest, IES will create an easy, user-friendly web platform for building owners, or their representatives, to collect and upload all the information required for the evaluation of potential retrofit opportunities for their buildings and attract investors. The information will be stored on the cloud and used by the EEnvest risk evaluation model as input. This risk evaluation model, manually developed by Eurac and SINLOC, will be converted to a fully automated algorithm, and will be integrated to operate on the cloud upon user request. Investors will in turn be able to access, filter and evaluate all the available investment opportunities and associated risks calculated by the evaluation model, through dashboards tailored to their needs. To ensure distributed consensus and trust in data exchange and validation, blockchain technology will be used.