RunBrook Energy Modeling

about building energy modeling

Building energy modeling (BEM), which is often referred to as “whole-building energy modeling,” is used for many reasons, including code compliance, new building and retrofit design, green certification, qualification for tax credits and utility incentives, and real-time building control. For example, BEM can be used to:

·         Asses the performance of a building while controlling use and operation. This is often necessary for code compliance, to obtain green certification, and to obtain financial incentives.

·         Design energy-efficient buildings and determine tradeoffs between up-front construction costs and operational energy costs. BEM can often reduce both energy costs and up-front construction costs.

·         Help meet building thermal loads efficiently with appropriate HVAC system design, as well as design and test strategies for these systems.

A building energy model is physics-based software simulation of building energy use. An energy model will input a building’s geometry, construction materials, as well as system configurations, efficiencies and control strategies for the building’s lighting, HVAC, refrigeration, water heating and renewable generation. Descriptions of a building’s use and operation, including schedules for occupancy, plug-loads, thermostat settings and lighting are also used. Once the inputs are included, an energy modeler will use a BEM program to combine the inputs with information about local weather and calculate thermal loads, system response to those loads and resulting energy use using physics equations. Related metrics, such as occupant comfort and energy costs are also determined.