To achieve the radical improvements in building energy efficiency being called for by the State of California, it will be necessary to apply an integrated approach involving new designs, new technologies, new ways of operating buildings, new tools for design, commissioning and monitoring, and new understanding of what comprises a comfortable and productive indoor environment. All of these themes define important goals that have guided the broad and comprehensive research effort described in this report. Research methods have included field studies, laboratory studies, energy and thermal comfort modeling, and technology transfer through participation on American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers standards and technical committees. Center for the Built Environment research is also guided by its 40 industry partners, who serve as the project advisory board for the project.
The work done under this project has advanced the understanding of new and innovative approaches to space conditioning in buildings featuring integrated design with combined low-energy systems. The research has generated the following findings, new tools and modeling capabilities, and recommendations: (1) lessons learned from three case studies of advanced integrated systems, (2) new guidelines for design, performance, and control of underfloor air distribution, radiant, and personal comfort systems from simulation studies, (3) updated software and improved guidance for simulation of underfloor air distribution, radiant and personal comfort systems in EnergyPlus, (4) advancement of personal comfort system technology to the field demonstration stage through the development and fabrication of several prototype personal comfort system devices, (5) a building performance evaluation toolkit based on wireless sensing and web-based analysis applications and data archiving, (6) guidelines for the development of building performance feedback systems (energy dashboards) that encourage building operators and occupants to reduce energy use, (7) an updated advanced Berkeley thermal comfort model, and (8) important updates to American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers Standard 55 that support advanced integrated systems and significant contributions to other American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers guideline documents.