Californias Path to Zero Net Energy (ZNE)
Californias energy-and-climate goal is for all new residential buildings to be zero net energy (ZNE) by 2020. Experts expect the air-tightness of new and existing homes with electric heating and cooling to increase significantly in response to this goal. SVACH is an LBNL research project tasked with supporting Californias ZNE goal by developing “smart ventilation” technologies.
Airtightness can be a Problem
Increased air-tightness can reduce indoor air quality (IAQ). Consequently, concerns about poor IAQ associated increasing airtightness present a major barrier to the State’s energy-savings policy goals.
Smart Ventilation is the Solution
Better insulation and windows can reduce heat loss and gain to a very low level. Therefore, airtight building envelopes dictate that the energy needed to ventilate and to condition ventilation air will represent a increasing fraction of future home energy use. Nevertheless, ventilation is necessary and important for occupant health and building durability. California and the world need new ventilation technologies to achieve healthy and durable ZNE buildings.
The LBNL SVACH research project, funded by the California Energy Commission, US DOE, and Aerco S.A. seeks to develop these advancements.
- Smart ventilation technologies to produce optimal indoor air quality, while reducing energy consumption and peak electricity demand.
- IAQ metrics to allow for optimizing ventilations whole-house airflow and allowing zonal ventilation strategies
- Enable design credit in Californias Title 24 and other energy codes for smart ventilation
- Establish metrics that go beyond just variable ventilation airflow, possibly to some type of IAQ score like the HERS index
Contractor: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.
Partners: Saturn Resource Management, Aereco S.A.
Co-funding: $1,000,000 from US Department of Energy
Market funding: $300,000 from Aereco S.A.
Term: May 2016 to September 2019