Who is this for: Architects, Engineers, and other building professionals performing energy analyses who would like to learn about the validation process used for the Autodesk Green Building Studio Potential Energy Savings Feature.
Takeaway: Autodesk Green Building Studio’s, (GBS) new Potential Energy Analysis (PES) feature automatically initiates cloud-based parametric studies for your project when you use Revit or Vasari’s energy analysis feature, or import a gbXML file into GBS. Validation of the PES feature consisted of more than 171,000 energy simulations, which were carefully reviewed by our QA and building science experts team. In this post we outline the validation process and provide access to the results.
Author: Marjorie Stein, Project Manager, Building Performance Analysis
Validation Methodology. In order to fully test and validate the PES results, the GBS QA and building science experts team ran a total of more than 171,000 energy analysis simulations, covering 17 climate locations, 34 building types, 4 conceptual models, 37 parameters, and model projects units using both Imperial Units (IP) and System International Units (SI). There are multiple reasons for using such a robust set of simulations: ensure confidence in our tools; fully exercise the GBS database of defaults (GBS generates a different set of baseline inputs for unspecified parameters based upon the building size, height, type, and location); and the range of these iterations will have differing sensitivities to the 37 PES parameters, which allows our team to fully validate the reasonableness of the results. Refer to the GBS WikiHelp topic, Building Assumptions and Details, for more information on the baseline defaults.
Pivot table and charts were generated from the energy analysis results, which allowed our team to quickly review the data by slicing it into various segments. Figure 1 is an example of window glass parameters energy end use (EUI) results for an office building type, across 17 climate zones—these energy analyses used a one-storey model of ~33,300 square feet. Our team of experts applied their expertise to ascertain whether or not the results are expected and reasonable. In this example, because the parameter ranges test extreme values seen in new and existing buildings, the expected result is that the baseline run’s EUI would fall within the range of glass parameter maximum and minimum results. Analyses of lighting efficiency parameters for a hotel building type, using the same one-storey model, is shown in Figure 2. The different EUI results illustrate how our analysis takes these variations into account.
Deeper analyses were then performed on a comprehensive cross-section of hundreds of samples. The building science team used a combination of detailed results from the GBS web page results, weather data, DOE-2 .inp files, and eQUEST to validate the inputs and the expected comparative results of the PES runs.
We have made the full dataset of energy analysis results available for you to download and review from the WikiHelp page, Potential Energy Savings Feature, Validation Study.
To learn more about the PES feature, check out our recent blog posting, “New ‘Potential Energy Savings’ Widget Helps You Focus on What Matters!”,
Tell us what you think: What level of validation testing would give you confidence in Autodesk’s Building Performance Analysis tools?