Using measured equipment load profiles to 'right-size' HVACsystems and reduce energy use in laboratory buildings (Pt. 2) Page: 1 of 14
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Revised Version for HPAC Engineering 6-29-05
Using measured equipment load profiles to "right-size"
HVAC systems and reduce energy use in laboratory
Paul Mathew, Ph.D., Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
Steve Greenberg, P.E., Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
David Frenze, P.E., Earl Walls Associates
Michael Morehead, P.E., Flack+Kurtz, Inc.
Dale Sartor, P.E., Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory
William Starr, Jr., University of California, Davis
There is a general paucity of measured equipment load data for laboratories and other complex
buildings and designers often use estimates based on "nameplate" rated data or design
assumptions from prior projects. Consequently, peak equipment loads are frequently
overestimated, and load variation across laboratory spaces within a building is typically
underestimated. This results in two design flaws. Firstly, the overestimation of peak equipment
loads results in over-sized HVAC systems, increasing initial construction costs as well as energy
use due to inefficiencies at low part-load operation. Secondly, HVAC systems that are designed
without accurately accounting for equipment load variation across zones can significantly
increase simultaneous heating and cooling, particularly for systems that use zone reheat for
temperature control. Thus, when designing a laboratory HVAC system, the use of measured
equipment load data from a comparable laboratory will support right-sizing HVAC systems and
optimizing their configuration to minimize simultaneous heating and cooling, saving initial
construction costs as well as life-cycle energy costs.
In this paper, we present data from recent studies to support the above thesis. We first present
measured equipment load data from two sources: time-series measurements in several laboratory
modules in a university research laboratory building; and peak load data for several facilities
recorded in a national energy benchmarking database. We then contrast this measured data with
estimated values that are typically used for sizing the HVAC systems in these facilities,
highlighting the over-sizing problem. Next, we examine the load variation in the time series
measurements and analyze the impact of this variation on energy use, via parametric energy
simulations. We then briefly discuss HVAC design solutions that minimize simultaneous heating
and cooling energy use.
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Mathew, Paul; Greenberg, Steve; Frenze, David; Morehead, Michael; Sartor, Dale & Starr, William. Using measured equipment load profiles to 'right-size' HVACsystems and reduce energy use in laboratory buildings (Pt. 2), article, June 29, 2005; Berkeley, California. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc901308/m1/1/: accessed January 19, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.