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Impact of Building Envelope Airtightness on HVAC Energy Use (AIA - TCEHVE) (4 credit hours/4 HSW Hours)

This 4 hour course focuses on the energy impact of improving airtightness in commercial buildings in the U.S. Past studies have shown that commercial building envelope air leakage can result in significant heating and cooling loads. This course evaluates the potential energy savings of an effective air barrier requirement using annual energy simulations prepared for three commercial buildings (office, retail and apartment) in five U.S. cities. A coupled multizone airflow and building energy simulation tool is used to predict the energy use for the buildings at a target air tightness level relative to a baseline level based on measurements in existing buildings. Predicted potential annual heating and cooling energy cost savings ranged from 3% to 36%. A cost effectiveness calculation is used in order to put the estimated energy savings in context.

' US Department of Energy

·         The student will obtain knowledge of what an air barrier system is, its importance and various types of air barrier systems applicable to commercial buildings.

·         The student will obtain knowledge of the energy impact of various air barrier systems for different types of buildings in different climate zones. 

·         The student will obtain knowledge of a life cycle cost analysis process to evaluate the cost effectiveness of various air barriers.

·         The student will obtain knowledge of other energy saving measures for different types of buildings in different climate zones.


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