June 6th 2023

UMC delivers outstanding energy modeling and analysis with IESVE

UMC delivers outstanding energy modeling and analysis with IESVE

In the past three years, IESVE users at UMC have delivered some impressive results for their clients. By delivering a calibrated model for a large medical center to identify 45% potential energy savings, here is one example of what is possible.

Since 2020, UMC’s Building Analysis & Modeling team has been expanding their use of IESVE to deliver the best in whole-building performance simulation for their clients across several impressive projects. 

In fact, IESVE has now become an essential tool for the UMC team across a whole spectrum of new construction and retrofit projects delivered across the UMC business. 

For the Engineering group, which deals largely with new construction, this can encompass a wide variety of building performance studies, but will most typically involve providing detailed loads calculations, natural ventilation, and shading studies, to help inform their design decisions. Using IESVE’s load analysis tools has proved particularly invaluable for the team, allowing them to perform everything from room and zone loads optimization studies, through to detailed HVAC (Heating Ventilation and Air Conditioning) system and equipment sizing. This enables their team to design more accurately and right-size their clients’ systems, to avoid unnecessarily high energy consumption and capital costs.

Within the scope of UMC’s Energy & Environment division, the modeling team is often required to support the testing of different energy efficiency measures for retrofit clients. Here, they will use IESVE to produce highly accurate models, calibrated with real data from the existing buildings, to provide a reliable baseline matching the real building's performance as closely as possible. These calibrated models can then be used to run simulations incorporating potentially dozens of different energy optimization measures, ultimately allowing UMC to deliver a report to the client that will help them compare all the different solutions available to them and formulate a detailed energy management and retrofit plan. Very often, this process will highlight simple adjustments that can be made to a building’s operation, allowing the client to achieve immediate savings which can free up funds for any deeper energy efficiency investments that may be required.

Some of UMC’s more recent projects have even expanded into looking at district energy systems and opportunities to recover waste heat, to help deliver energy savings at the community scale. With the mounting pressure of net-zero energy targets and a growing trend towards distributed energy systems, these services are proving increasingly valuable to UMC’s clients.

The following is one example of the innovative projects UMC has delivered recently, with the help of IESVE.

Calibrated Modeling of Overlake Medical Center

Overlake Medical Center brings best-in-class, modern healthcare to Seattle’s growing Eastside. For this project, UMC was able to apply IESVE and their expertise in Building Analysis and Modeling to help the medical center identify energy efficiency measures and paths to compliance with the Washington State Clean Buildings Standard (CBS).

The UMC team began by conducting a comprehensive energy audit of the entire facility, identifying trends across all of the medical center’s current systems, equipment and scheduling while taking account of other key factors, such as occupancy. During the audit, the team found that significant opportunities existed to improve Overlake’s current Energy Use Intensity (EUI).

Using the data gathered from the audit, UMC was able to produce a highly accurate model, calibrated within a 4% range of the facility’s recent utility data. This meant that UMC and their client could be confident in the accuracy of the results produced.

UMC then used the calibrated model to simulate and analyze a range of possible energy efficiency measures for Overlake, including scheduling improvements for equipment that was operating 24/7 and even waste heat recovery. They outlined over 40 interventions the medical center would need to prioritize to comply with the CBS, amounting to a potential 45% reduction in Overlake’s total energy consumption. 

“What I like about IESVE Software is that it is continuously improving its features so that recent technologies can be modeled. There are always new features we can utilize to make our models more accurate and useful in their real-life application. Our main reason for choosing IESVE was the detail of the analysis that can be achieved, from the geometry, through to loads, shading effects, and natural ventilation. We have also received a lot of great feedback on how detailed and visual the reports that we pull out of the software are, which makes it easy for our clients to understand the impact of the measures we are proposing.”

David Park, Building Analysis & Modeling Manager, UMC