Building energy simulation is sometimes called building simulation but we refer to is as Building Modeling and Energy Analysis (or BMEA) in order to distinguish this process from other building simulation protocols such as those used by architects and structural engineers.
BMEA is a process where the structural and environmental control components of an existing or proposed building are simulated so that various energy-use control strategies can be evaluated. If you have PowerPoint installed, you can click here to see a short slide show on this process. Note that for simplicity the active elements of the slide show have been disabled.
We have included links to websites and publications that we have found useful and may be of use to other energy professionals. These will be changed and updated from time to time as more material becomes available.
Quick link to publications
U.S. Dept. of Energy Building Energy Simulation Tools Directory
The U.S. Gov't. has evaluated dozens of building energy simulation programs and this site lists them along with the program accessibility: i.e. free or not.
Clicking on the program name brings up an evaluation in a standard format so you can easily compare program features.
CANMET Energy Technology Centre
A Canadian government site that has several energy simulation programs for download, including ones for alternative energy sources. Registration is required, but the software is free. The programs are primarily designed for the Canadian residential market, but other weather files are said to be available. Enquiries to the site on this subject have so far been unsuccessful.
If anyone knows where US weather files for their programs may be obtained, let us know here.
The Home Energy Saver
Another U.S. Gov't. run site developed by the Environmental Energy Technologies Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. This is a useful web-based energy simulation tool for the residential user. After filling out a simple form the site calculates current and potential energy bills based on a variety of energy-saving strategies.
Simple payback and return-on-investment for each energy-saving method are shown, although some of the given costs for installation seem a bit low.
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Links to publications in PDF that we have found useful. These require Adobe Reader, which you can get for free here.
Air Flow Simulation
Development and Testing of the Characteristic Fan Curve
DOE 2.2 Vol. 1 The Basics
eQuest Hands-On Example
Underfloor Air Distribution
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