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AHR Expo ®

Show Issue Jan. 22 – 24, 2018, Chicago

Cosponsored by ASHRAE and AHRI
Welcome to our world. Booth 5519.
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174916_Revised3.indd 1 12/11/17 1:41 PM

Your ECM High-Efficiency Connection. Pioneering Easy BAS and Mission Critical Solutions.

Taco offers the largest selection of ECM powered high-efficiency pumps and Visit booth #5519 and meet Clarity3, a simple turn-key BAS solution designed
circulators on the market, from 44 watt circulators to 30 HP commercial around the user, not the hardware. Clarity 3 is scalable and customizable, too.
pumps. And with new Taco eLink, a tap of your mobile device puts product While you’re with us, reach out for information on our Mission Critical solutions.
information at your fingertips. That’s one handy connection. Visit our booth We’ll show you impressive ways to decrease your maintenance costs and PUE.
and try it for yourself!

174916_Revised3.indd 1 12/11/17 1:41 PM

Taco Family Support. Always.

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Blow-Through vs.
Draw-Through: AHUs
By Stephen W. Duda, P.E.
The Coming Stucco-Pocalypse
By Joseph W. Lstiburek, Ph.D., P.Eng.
20 54
FEATURES 6 Reasons Why Commercial
Buildings Operate Without
14 Plug Load Design Factors: Adequate Ventilation
By Marwa Zaatari, Ph.D.
By Omer Sarfraz; Christian K. Bach; Christopher K. Wilkins, P.E. Let’s Get Critical
By Andy Pearson, Ph.D., C.Eng.
20 Tiny Houses, Big HVAC?:
Loads and Energy 68 DATA CENTERS
Fog Computing: Part One
By Brian A. Rock, Ph.D., P.E. By Donald L. Beaty, P.E.;
David Quirk, P.E.; Jeff Jaworski
30 Next Generation of School Design &
Operation: AEDG K–12
By Paul A. Torcellini, Ph.D., P.E.; Shanti D. Pless ASHRAE Journal’s Official

International Air-Conditioning, Heating, Refrigerating Exposition

New Federal Regulations for Ceiling &SHOW GUIDE


Fans: What You Need to Know
By Christian Taber; Michael Ivanovich JANUARY 22–24, 2018
INSIDE: 300+ Products • 200+ Ads • Exhibitors & Booths •
Floor Plan • The 2018 AHR Expo Innovation Awards


4 Commentary 6 Industry News 9 Letters ASHRAE Journal’s Official
12 Meetings and Shows 75 People 78 Classified Advertising AHR Expo® Product &
79 Advertisers Index Show Guide

ASHRAE Technology Portal | Repository of ASHRAE Content PUBLICATION DISCLAIMER | ASHRAE has compiled this publication
with care, but ASHRAE has not investigated and ASHRAE
Free to Members: Journal Articles • Research Reports expressly disclaims any duty to investigate any product,
service, process, procedure, design or the like which may
ology be described herein. The appearance of any technical data,
l Available by Subscription: editorial material or advertisement in this publication does
Transactions • Conference Papers • Conference Seminars not constitute endorsement, warranty or guarantee by ASHRAE
of any product, service, process, procedure, design or the like. ASHRAE does not warrant that the information in this
publication is free of errors and ASHRAE does not necessarily
agree with any statement or opinion in this publication. The
ASHRAE® Journal (ISSN 0001-2491) PUBLISHED MONTHLY | Copyright 2018 by ASHRAE, 1791 Tullie Circle N.E., Atlanta, GA 30329. entire risk of the use of any information in this publication and
Periodicals postage paid at Atlanta, Georgia, and additional mailing offices. LETTERS/MANUSCRIPTS | Letters to the editor its supplement is assumed by the user.
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1791 Tullie Circle NE
Atlanta, GA 30329-2305
Phone: 404-636-8400
Fax: 404-321-5478 | Jay Scott
W. Stephen Comstock
Big Show, Big Expectations
Jay Scott As the 2018 AHR Expo approaches, 46% of respondents picked new con-
Managing Editor another record is set to be broken, with struction, up 16% from 2017.
Sarah Foster more than 12 acres (4.9 ha) of exhibit
Associate Editor space. More than 2,100 exhibiting THIS EDITION INCLUDES ASHRAE
Rebecca Matyasovski companies will occupy over 530,000 Journal’s annual AHR Expo Official
Associate Editor
net ft2 (49 239 m2). Product and Show Guide. The guide
Christopher Weems The 2018 Show will be 9% larger will be available on the Show floor.
than the 2015 Show in Chicago and However, this magazine can serve as
Associate Editor
Jeri Alger 6% larger than the 2017 Show in Las a year-round reference tool for new Vegas. products.
Associate Editor “The record numbers for the 2018 This year’s guide features more than
Mary Kate McGowan AHR Expo in Chicago appear to be 300 products and over 200 ads, with
Assistant Editor indicative of a currently strong, links to more information online about
Tani Palefski growing industry and a sense of opti- the products.
PUBLISHING SERVICES mism for the future,” Clay Stevens, The guide also includes the AHR
Publishing Services Manager president of International Exposition Expo Innovation Awards, featured on
David Soltis
Company (IEC), the Show manager, Pages S12—S26. Ten winners, as well as
Jayne Jackson said. 29 finalists, were chosen by ASHRAE
ADVERTISING judges from more than 200 entries
Associate Publisher,
ASHRAE Media Advertising A PRE-SHOW EXHIBITOR SURVEY in 10 industry-related categories.
Greg Martin from IEC and ASHRAE Journal found The 2018 Product of the Year will be
Advertising Production Coordinator
that those expecting business pros- announced Tuesday, Jan. 23, during
Vanessa Johnson pects to be excellent or good jumped ceremonies at the Show.
from 77% in 2017 to 89% for 2018. The For 2018, $20,700 in award entry fees
Circulation Specialist survey was sent to over 1,700 manu- will be donated to Chicago Lighthouse,
Ann Morris facturers worldwide. a non-profit organization serving the
The survey found a little over 60% of blind, visually impaired, disabled and
President exhibitors will introduce new prod- veteran communities with comprehen-
Bjarne W. Olesen, Ph.D.
ucts, roughly the same as last year. sive vision care and support services.
Sheila J. Hayter, P.E. “It appears that there is more opti- AHR Expo will feature nearly 200
Treasurer mism this year than last in general and education sessions including free best
Darryl K. Boyce, P.Eng.
for residential and new construction practices and industry trends semi-
Vice Presidents
Julia A. Keen, Ph.D., P.E. markets in particular,” Stevens said. nars from leading HVAC&R organiza-
Michael Schwedler, P.E.
Ginger Scoggins, P.E. For the residential sector, respon- tions, professional certification op-
Edward Tsui dents expecting excellent or good portunities and continuing education
Secretary & Executive Vice President business prospects jumped 19% over programs from the ASHRAE Learning
Jeff H. Littleton
2017. Institute (ALI). ASHRAE offers eight
2017 – 18 Chair When asked “Where do you see the free seminars at McCormick Place.
Publications Committee
Francis Lacharité best prospects for business in 2018?,” See you at the Show.
Washington Office Mission Statement: ASHRAE Journal reviews current HVAC&R technology of broad interest through publica-
tion of application-oriented articles. ASHRAE Journal’s editorial content ranges from back-to-basics features
to reviews of emerging technologies, covering the entire spectrum of professional interest from design and
construction practices to commissioning and the service life of HVAC&R environmental systems.



AHRI Chairman Urges

Members to Stay Involved
In Regulatory Processes
MIAMI—2018 AHRI Board to arrange meetings for
Chairman Chris Peel members with state and
challenged members at federal representatives.
the 2017 Annual Meeting “We cannot achieve these
in November to commit goals without your engage- Pictured during AHRI’s Opening Policy Information session are (from left) Stephen Yurek,
president and CEO; Karim Amrane, chief technical adviser; Caroline Davidson-Hood, general
to continued involvement ment in the process. We counsel; and Joe Trauger, senior vice president, Policy and Government Relations.
in the federal and state also need to speak with
legislative and regulatory one voice as an industry… 1.7 million certificates
processes, while also sup- In fact, this is why our downloaded every year. 3 Priorities of AHRI
porting AHRI’s efforts to The directory is a valued MIAMI— In address-
make progress in work- tool for the industry, with ing the members,
force development. contractors and distribu- AHRI Board Chairman
Peel, president and COO tors relying heavily on it Chris Peel focused on
of Rheem Manufacturing, to identify AHRI Certified the three priorities of
said he has challenged AHRI products and equip- AHRI:
staff to “take advantage of ment and to download 1. Leveraging its
what I believe is a unique Certificates of Certified relationship with the
‘window of opportunity’ Performance for their U.S. Department of
with the current adminis- AHRI’s Alison Andrews, manager, customers. To improve the Energy for regulatory
tration to make significant Business Process Improvement, hosts user experience, AHRI ini- predictability;
a NextGen Directory demo at the 2017
progress in our advocacy Annual Meeting. The new directory will
tiated a massive upgrade 2. Continue to
and certification efforts.” make searches easier and improve secu- to the directory.  enhance certification;
Staff alone cannot rity, while supporting regulatory report- In addition to improved and
ing. An app will allow access in the field.
accomplish what needs The new directory launches Jan. 8. security benefits and ease 3. Workforce and
to be done, so Peel also of use for manufacturers, development efforts.
challenged members to association exists,” Peel AHRI said several improve-
“take the initiative and said. “Whether you work ments are on tap for users. Arabic, Spanish, Korean
proactively work together, for a small, midsize or Among the many issues and French;
not only with the DOE, large business, you have end users report with the • Search on discontinued
but with the EPA, energy the same voice with your current directory, unneces- and obsolete models;
advocates and others to elected officials,” he added. sarily complicated, non- and
see that changes actually A major topic of discus- intuitive search functions • Search for Energy Star
take place.” He encour- sion during the meeting rank near the top. The new and CEE qualified
aged members to take was the next genera- directory will include: products.
advantage of established tion of AHRI’s Directory • Universal search across In addition, a mobile
events such as the State of Certified Product all programs; app for IOS and Android
Summit (to be held in Performance, scheduled to • Smart quick search with platforms will enable easy
March in Boston) and go live on Jan. 8. auto suggestions; access to the Directory
the National Advocacy The directory hosts • Advanced detailed from the field. 
Conference (to be held in hundreds of thousands of search; Learn more at www.
June in Washington), and visitors each month, with • Multilingual support
also of AHRI staff’s ability an average of more than in English, Chinese, NextGen-Directory.aspx.


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are stored at precisely 68˚F
to keep them in perfect condition.
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EPA Increases including air-conditioning

Charge Limits and heating systems. In Research: How


For Hydrocarbon 2016, 93.5% of new single- Occupancy
Refrigerants family homes started in- Sensors Can
WASHINGTON, D.C.—The U.S. cluded a central air-condi-
Reduce HVAC
Environmental Protection tioning system, according
Agency (EPA) has approved to the National Association Energy Use
an increase in the charge of Home Builders (NAHB), TUSCALOOSA, ALA.—Research- (From left) Researchers Dr. Fei Hu,
limits of hydrocarbon which crunched the data ers at the University of Dr. Zheng O’Neill and Dr. Charles O’Neill.
refrigerants in new house- to trace changes between Alabama are studying According to Zheng
hold refrigerators and 2000 and 2016. The share how new and improved O’Neill, Ph.D., Member
freezers to 150 grams (5.3 of new homes with a forced motion sensors could ASHRAE, an assistant
ounces) from 57 grams air system decreased from help reduce energy used professor of mechanical
(2.01 ounces), the amount 71% in 2000 to 57% in 2016, for HVAC systems. The engineering who is lead-
allowed under the previ- while air or ground heat researchers have devised ing the project, “When
ous standard. The rule pump systems increased a program that uses we complete the work,
covers isobutane, propane from 23% in 2000 to 41% in sensors that sense when we should be able to say
and R-441A to be used in 2016. a certain number of that if we use this kind
new household refrigera- people are in a room or of sensor-driven control
tors, freezers and combi- CIBSE Launches building and automati- strategy, we can achieve
nation refrigerators and Special Interest cally adjusts the air to ac- HVAC energy savings of
freezers. Group commodate that crowd. at least 30%.”
LONDON—CIBSE has launched
Census Data Gives the HVAC Systems Group, experience in the effective tributing to the develop-
Snapshot of Home intended to support and design and operation of ment of new publications
AC Market encourage the efficient low carbon [HVAC] sys- and the maintenance of
WASHINGTON, D.C.—The U.S. Cen- design, installation tems.” The group will also existing guidance. Antony
sus Bureau recently pub- and operation of HVAC identify knowledge gaps R. (Tony) Day, executive
lished its annual Survey of systems. CIBSE says the in the design and opera- director of the Interna-
Construction (SOC), which new group “will provide a tion of HVAC systems to tional Energy Research
provides data on character- ready means for sharing promote research in these Centre, will chair the new
istics of new homes started, of new developments and areas in addition to con- group.

Google’s ‘Landscraper’ Could Herald

Lower, Longer Built Environment
LONDON—When complete, Google’s new London headquar-

ters will be longer than the Shard—the tallest skyscraper

in the UK—is tall. The Shard is 1,016 ft (310 m) tall.
Google’s London headquarters is 1,082 ft (330 m) long.
The building’s architects, Bjarke Ingels Group and
Heatherwick Studios, call it a “landscraper.” According
A rendering of Google’s new London headquarters.
to an article in Business Insider, while Google’s building is
one of the first landscrapers in the world, it likely won’t ing heights to accommodate drones; and protecting
be the last. The article says trends such as corporate buildings from severe weather will result in a marked
buildings leaving dense city centers; limiting build- flattening of the built environment.



Damage to Walls in damage was observed, in most cases an “effective” rain screen by allow-
Multifamily Housing not correlated to any detail of the ing a small drainage space between
siding installation. the back face of the siding and the
With Vinyl Siding All of the examples represented WRB. Yet Figure 9 in my article
In “Damage in Multifamily Housing overwhelmingly adverse conditions shows the back side of vinyl siding
Walls with Vinyl Siding: Cautionary and at most show that vinyl siding that was dripping wet and clearly
Case Studies” (July 2017), George cannot compensate for all instances had not drained out. That wetting
Tsongas appears to suggest the use of poor construction or, especially, often resulted in the building paper
of vinyl siding was a key factor in indoor conditions. From the avail- or housewrap and even the gypsum
development of damage to exterior able evidence no conclusions can be sheathing getting extremely wet as
walls in seven multifamily housing drawn about whether similar dam- well. Regarding air leakage, some
complexes. Professor Tsongas sug- age would have occurred under such sections of the siding had sufficient
gests, without offering evidence, that extreme conditions with vinyl or air leakage to afford drying, but
the vapor impermeability of the sid- any other siding installed in a rain other sections did not, and those
ing material itself was critical to this, screen configuration. were the sections where damage was
while dismissing the much greater It’s important to keep in mind observed.
opportunity for drying afforded by vinyl siding has been in use for over The letter further states that
the drainage and ventilation features 50 years (and the most popular clad- I acknowledged the buildings I
inherent in vinyl siding. We con- ding in the U.S. for 22 years, accord- inspected represent exceptional
tacted Professor Tsongas directly, but ing to the U.S. Census Bureau) and cases, and by their nature represent
he declined to discuss the questions used extensively throughout the an adverse selection. Just the opposite
and issues we raised. United States and Canada with very is true. In every one of the eight mul-
As Professor Tsongas acknowledges, few, if any, problems relative to tifamily complexes I inspected, many
the buildings subject to the investiga- moisture issues. of the buildings had damage behind
Matthew Dobson, Vice President, Regulatory & Advocacy,
tion represent exceptional cases, and Vinyl Siding Institute, Inc., Burlington, N.C.
the vinyl siding in multiple locations.
by their nature represent an adverse While inspecting many hundreds
selection. These cases support no The Author Responds of multifamily buildings with thou-
conclusion about the performance of In the Vinyl Siding Institute’s let- sands of dwelling units with other
the vast majority of both single- and ter, they state “Professor Tsongas types of siding that are breathable,
multifamily buildings with vinyl sid- suggests, without offering evidence such damage caused by moisture
ing in the Pacific Northwest and other [emphasis added], that the vapor from indoors rather than from the
climate zones, for which no problems impermeability of the siding mate- exterior of the walls is extremely rare.
have been reported. rial itself was critical to this [i.e., The letter states that these cases
As detailed in the descriptions of damage to exterior walls], while support no conclusion about the
each of the studied walls, signifi- dismissing the much greater oppor- vast majority of both single- and
cant factors that tended to permit tunity for drying afforded by the multifamily buildings for which
extraordinary migration of unusu- drainage and ventilation features no problems have been reported.
ally moist indoor air were present inherent in vinyl siding.” Yet the The article did not discuss damage
in each case. Although some of the whole article provided extensive and in single-family housing, except to
buildings contained polyethylene significant evidence that indicated note that it is less likely. For multi-
interior vapor barriers, the efficacy that the vapor impermeability of family housing the findings from
of their installation was not exam- the siding and the lack of drying the seven complexes suggest the
ined, and other buildings contained capability was the cause of the wide- possibility of a more widespread
retarders of questionable imperme- spread damage observed. problem than has previously been
ability, which likely further contrib- The Vinyl Siding Institute and observed. Because vinyl siding is
uted to the moisture load within the some others consider the basic seldom removed, damage behind it
wall. Both generalized and localized design and installation to provide is seldom noted. However, that does



not mean damage does not exist. elevated indoor relative humidities buildings were no different than those
The letter also has stated that in are not uncommon with multifamily I have inspected with breathable sid-
each of the studied walls, there were housing in the Pacific Northwest. Yet ings such as wood, engineered wood,
significant factors that tended to those with breathable siding almost stucco or fiber cement.
permit extraordinary migration of never have the type of damage The letter concludes that from the
unusually moist indoor air in each reported in my article. available evidence no conclusion
case. That included interior vapor The letter further notes that both can be drawn about whether similar
barriers that they felt represented generalized and localized damage damage would have occurred under
poor construction and contributed was observed, in most cases not such extreme conditions with vinyl
to “extraordinary” moisture loads correlated to any detail of the sid- or any other siding installed in a rain
within the walls or indoor conditions. ing installation. That is precisely screen configuration. One of my rec-
Yet the types of interior vapor the point! The location of the dam- ommendations is to install new con-
barrier construction found in age likely occurred at locations of tact-applied vinyl siding using a true
the vinyl sided buildings are very highest air leakage in the walls and rain screen design that incorporates
typical of construction in the Pacific outside bedrooms where the indoor an air cavity behind it that is fully
Northwest and other cold climates humidities were highest. vented at its top and bottom. That has
with all types of siding. Moreover, The letter also states that vinyl siding been shown to best provide the most
the indoor conditions in the vinyl cannot compensate for all instances effective way to minimize moisture-
sided multifamily housing did not of poor construction or, especially, related durability problems in walls
appear to be any different from such indoor conditions. Yet the construc- with any type of cladding.
housing with breathable siding; tion and indoor conditions in the Dr. George Tsongas, P.E., Member ASHRAE, Portland, Ore.

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CTI Annual Conference, Feb. 4–8, Houston. or www. CALLS FOR PAPERS
Contact Virginia A. Manser, Cooling Technology
Institute, at 281-583-4087, or BOMA International Conference and Expo, June ASHRAE JOURNAL 23–26, San Antonio. Contact the Building Owners ASHRAE Journal seeks applications arti-
and Managers Association at 202-408-2662, cles of 3,000 or fewer words. Submissions
IE3 Show, Feb. 12–14, Washington, D.C. Contact or
organizers at 888-290-222 or are subject to peer reviews and cannot
ASHRAE Annual Conference, June 23–27, have been published previously. Submit
AAMA 2018 National 81st Annual Conference, Houston. Contact ASHRAE at 800-527-4723 or
Feb. 19–22, Orlando, Fla. Contact the American abstracts before sending articles to Jay
Architectural Manufacturers Association at 847- Scott, Editor, at
303-5664,, or JULY 2018 Purdue Compressor/Refrigeration and Air SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY
Conditioning and High Performance Buildings FOR THE BUILT ENVIRONMENT
Hydraulic Institute Annual Conference, Feb. ASHRAE’s Science and Technology for the Built
Conferences and Short Courses, July 9–12, West
26–March 2, Phoenix. Contact organizers at
Lafayette, Ind. Contact Kim Stockment at 765-494- Environment seeks papers on original, com-
973-267-9700 or
6078, or pleted research not previously published.
Papers must discuss how the research con-
Air System Engineering and Technology (ASET) SEPTEMBER tributes to technology. Papers should be
Conference—US, March 6–7, San Antonio, Texas. IBPC 2018, Sept. 23–26, Syracuse, N.Y. Endorsed by about 6,000 words. Abstracts and papers
Contact Janet Blanchfield, Air Movement and ASHRAE. Contact organizers at should be submitted on Manuscript Cen-
Control Association (AMCA) International, at 2018 Building Performance Analysis Conference tral at, 847-704-6255, or www. & SimBuild, Sept. 26–28, Chicago. Endorsed by Contact Reinhard Radermacher, Ph.D., ASHRAE and IBPSA-USA. Contact ASHRAE at 800- Editor, at
IIAR Natural Refrigeration Conference & Expo, 527-4723, or http://tinyurl.
March 18–21, Colorado Springs, Colo. Contact the com/BuildPerform2018. ASHRAE CONFERENCE PAPERS
International Institute of Ammonia Refrigeration For the 2019 Winter Conference in Atlan-
at 703-312-4200,, or www. OCTOBER ta, Conference Paper abstracts, full Tech- AHR Expo-Mexico, Oct. 2–4, Mexico City. Co- nical Papers and paper session requests
sponsored by ASHRAE. Contact the Internation-
Global Women in STEM Leadership Summit, al Exposition Company at 203-221-9232, info@ are due March 2, 2018. For more infor-
March 19–20, Atlanta. Endorsed by ASHRAE. Con- or mation, contact or tel:
tact Takoi Hamrita at 706-542-1973, thamrita@uga. 678-539-1137.
edu, or IFMA World Workplace, Oct. 3–5, Charlotte, N.C.
Contact the International Facility Management
ACEEE Hot Water Forum, March 20–22, Portland, Association at 713-623-4362, or
Ore. Endorsed by ASHRAE. Contact the American
Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy at 202- Cold Climate HVAC 2018, March 12–15, Kiru-
507-4000 or SMACNA Annual Convention, Oct. 14–17, San
na, Sweden. Endorsed by ASHRAE. Contact Den-
hwf. Diego. Contact the Sheet Metal and Air Condi-
nis Johansson, Building Services, chair, at dennis.
tioning Contractors’ Association at 703-803-
CMPX 2018, March 21–23, Toronto. Contact 416- or
2980, or
444-5225,, or www.cmpxshow. annualconvention. Filtech, March 13–15, Cologne, Germany. Contact
com. organizers at 49 (0)2132 93 57 60,,
APRIL AHRI Annual Meeting, Nov. 11–13, Tucson, Ariz.
NAFA Technical Seminar, April 4–6, Kansas City, Light+Building, March 18–23, Frankfurt, Ger-
Contact the Air-Conditioning, Heating, & Refrig-
Mo. Contact the National Air Filtration Association many. Contact organizers at 49 69 75 75 - 0 or
eration Institute at 703-524-8800, bteferi@ahrinet.
at 608-310-7542,, or www.nafahq.
org or
Greenbuild International Conference and Expo, JUNE
The CxEnergy Conference & Expo, April 23–26, Nov. 14–16, Chicago. Contact organizers at 866- Roomvent Ventilation, June 2–5, Espoo, Finland.
Las Vegas. Contact organizers at 202-737-7775, 815-9824, or www. Endorsed by ASHRAE. Contact Jorma Säteri, execu- or tive manager of the Finnish Society of Indoor Air
NEBB Annual Conference, April 26–28, San Diego. Quality and Climate (FiSIAQ) at info@roomventila-
Contact Tori Mitchell, National Environmental Bal- DECEMBER or
ancing Bureau, at 301-591-0485,, or HARDI Annual Conference, Dec. 1–4, Austin, Texas. Contact the Heating, Air-conditioning, & Re- SEPTEMBER
frigeration Distributors International at 614-345- 1st IIR International Conference on the Applica-
MAY 4328, or www.hardinet. tion of HFO Refrigerants, Sept. 2–5, Birmingham,
AHRI Spring Meeting, May 7–9, Baltimore. Con- org. England, United Kingdom. Endorsed by ASHRAE.
tact the Air-Conditioning, Heating, & Refrigeration Contact organizers at or www.
Institute at 703-524-8800, or OUTSIDE NORTH AMERICA
Lightfair International, May 8–10, Chicago. Con- ACREX 2018, Feb. 22–24, Bangalore, India. Contact The Third International Conference on Efficient
tact organizers at 877-437-4352, organizers at 91-11-41635655, Building Design, Oct. 4–5, Beirut, Lebanon. Con-
or or tact ASHRAE at 800-527-4723, meetings@ashrae.
MARCH org, or
AIA Conference on Architecture, June 21–23, Ecobuild, March 6–8, London. Contact organizers Chillventa,Oct. 16–18, Nuremberg, Germany.
New York. Contact the American Institute at 44 (0)2030112540 or www. Contact organizers at 49 911 8606 4906 or www.
of Architects at 800-343-4146, register@




Plug Load Design Factors


Plug and other non-regulated loads are one of the main contributors to overall power
consumption of modern buildings, according to previous studies, consuming almost
5% of the total U.S. primary energy.1 There has been an increase in equipment use and
power demand in the information technology (IT) field.2 According to our results, the
increase in desktop computer peak power consumption is more than compensated for
by lower power consumption of screens and printers.
Plug loads are electrical loads that cannot be attrib- values. Sarfraz and Bach6 found the peak heat gain for
uted to energy system loads in commercial build- the majority of standard office equipment to be 10% to
ings such as HVAC, refrigeration and lighting loads.3 50% of the manufacturer-provided nameplate values as
Plug loads affect the overall energy consumption shown in Figure 1.
directly by consuming the electricity and indirectly Presenting the load factor in the form of watts per
by increasing the HVAC cooling load. According square foot (or watts per square meter) is a useful
to a study conducted by New Buildings Institute,2 representation of data available to building energy
plug loads account for up to 50% of overall electric- designers and modelers. Load factor calculation for
ity consumption in buildings with high efficiency various office spaces requires an accurate estimation
HVAC systems. It is important to accurately estimate of equipment power consumption and diversity fac-
the heat gains from plug loads to correctly size the tor data. Wilkins and McGaffin7 calculated load factors
HVAC system. Heat gains based on equipment name- and diversity factors for the first time by recording the
plate values result in overestimation of HVAC loads power consumption of five administrative office build-
because nameplate values are based on measure- ings in Washington, D.C. Wilkins and Hosni8 calculated
ments of instantaneous power consumption at the load factors and diversity factors for various office
equipment’s maximum working capacity.4 spaces using the equipment power consumption data of
Hosni, et al.,5 also found the peak heat gain for Moorefield, et al.9 The load factors calculated by Wilkins
office equipment with a nameplate power consump- and Hosni8 ranged from 0.25 W/ft2 (2.69 W/m2) for
tion below 1,000 W to be 25% to 50% of the nameplate offices with light equipment use to a more conservative
Omer Sarfraz is a Ph.D. candidate, and Christian K. Bach, Ph.D., is an assistant professor at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater, Okla. Christopher K. Wilkins, P.E., is senior project
manager at CRB in Medford, Mass.



FIGURE 1 Peak heat gain vs. nameplate rating for different office equipment.6 FIGURE 2 Plug load densities reported in literature.10

1,000 + Printers 2017 ASHRAE Handbook
Screens Lamano, et al.11 Range
Sheppy, et al. (Without Data Centers)12 Average for Office
Peak Heat Gain (W)

Sheppy, et al. (With Data Centers)12 Average for K–12
Thermal Food Processing 100% 00% Education
Equipment 1
Metzger, et al.13
100 50%
Srinivasan, et al.14
2009 ASHRAE Handbook
2001 ASHRAE Handbook
10 0.0 0.46 0.93 1.39 1.85 2.32 2.79 3.25
10 100 1,000
Plug Load Power Density (W/ft2)
Nameplate Rating (W)

value of 2 W/ft2 (21.52 W/m2) for offices with heavy addition, new types of office equipment, including tab-
equipment use. let PCs and laptop docking stations, are more widely
Sarfraz and Bach10 recently updated the load factor val- used. One of the objectives of 1742-RP was to update the
ues in Table 11 of Chapter 18 of the 2017 ASHRAE Handbook— heat gain values for existing equipment types and intro-
Fundamentals. The updated load factor values range from duce heat gain values for the equipment not represented
0.34 W/ft2 (3.67 W/m2) for offices with light laptop dock- in the previous Handbook editions.
ing station use to a more conservative value of 1.53 W/ft2
(16.48 W/m2) for offices with heavy desktop computer Peak Heat Gains
use. Sarfraz and Bach10 found a decrease of 10% to 33% in In 1742-RP, Sarfraz and Bach6 used plug load loggers to
load factors when compared to the results of Wilkins and record power consumption data for various office equip-
Hosni.8 ment at 10-second intervals. The data was then down-
Figure 2 shows the variation in average load factor val- sampled to a 15-minute moving average to filter out short-
ues over time for different types of buildings. A reduc- term peaks. The equipment peak heat gain value is the
tion in the average load factor values for office buildings highest 15-minute average interval of the recorded data.
has occurred over the last 16 years. The updated peak heat gain values for some of the
equipment are listed in Table 1. These values are com-
Current ASHRAE Handbook Data pared against the peak heat gain values given in the 2013
ASHRAE funded research project 1742-RP, Update to ASHRAE Handbook—Fundamentals. The updated peak heat
Measurements of Office Equipment Heat Gain Data, gain values of desktop and laptop computers are higher
to update office equipment heat gain and load fac- than 2013 Handbook values. This is due to the increase
tor data for Table 11 of Chapter 18 of “Nonresidential in the use and computing capabilities of desktop and
Cooling and Heating Load Calculations,” of the 2017 laptop computers over this period. Newer LCD screens
ASHRAE Handbook—Fundamentals. Prior to that, the data consume less power than the older screens tested for the
was updated in 2009 by research project 1482-RP, for 2013 Handbook. Peak heat gain values of laptop docking
inclusion in Table 11 of Chapter 18 of the 2009 ASHRAE stations are included in the 2017 Handbook because lap-
Handbook—Fundamentals. In those 8 years, there has been top docking stations are increasingly used in the modern
tremendous development in the power management workplace. The peak heat gain value of laptop docking
capabilities of office equipment. This is accompanied stations is 34% lower than desktop computers.
by increased computing capabilities and increased use,
i.e., replacement of paper documents by electronic Diversity Factors
documents. Also, cathode ray tube (CRT) monitors A diversity factor is the measure of the actual equipment
are replaced by more power-efficient LCD screens. In peak power consumption of a group of equipment relative



TABLE 1 Comparison of equipment peak heat gains in 2013 and 2017 ASHRAE TABLE 2 Recommended diversity.10
Laptop Docking Station NA 70%
Desktop PC 65 (50 – 100) 82 (26 – 151)
Notebook Computer 75% 75%
Laptop Docking Station NA 61 (35 – 128)
Screen 60% 91%
Tablet PC NA 36 (31 – 42)
Printer NA 51%
Notebook Computer 30 (15 – 40) 53 (46 – 59)
NA=Not Applicable.
Screen 30 (20 – 36) 21 (14 – 26)
NA=Not Applicable.
FIGURE 4 Laptop docking station diversity.

FIGURE 3 Desktop computer diversity.



Diversity Factor (15-Minute Interval)
20% Diversity Factor (Peak)
Diversity Factor (15-Minute Interval) 0%
Diversity Factor (Peak) 12 pm. Sun. Mon. Tue. Wed. Thu. Fri. Sat.
12 pm. Sun. Mon. Tue. Wed. Thu. Fri. Sat.
FIGURE 5 Screen diversity. The sudden decrease in diversity between Thursday and
Friday is due to missing data.
to the sum of individual equipment peak power consump- 100%
tion of the group. For example, if over the course of 2 weeks,
the peak power consumption of 10 desktop computers 80%
equals 100 W, and the peak of each individual desktop com-
puter equals 20 W (200 W total for 10 desktop computers),
then the diversity factor is calculated to be 50%.

To calculate the diversity factor, power consumption

data must be recorded for the same type of equipment 40%
in the same space simultaneously. Sarfraz and Bach10
calculated the diversity factors for different office equip- 20%
ment. Similar to peak heat gain calculation, an averaging Diversity Factor (15-Minute Interval)
interval of 15 minutes was used to determine the diversity Diversity Factor (Peak)
factors for different equipment shown in Table 2. 12 pm. Sun. Mon. Tue. Wed. Thu. Fri. Sat.
For different types of tested equipment, one-week
diversity factor profiles for 15-minute averaging inter- Load Factors
vals are shown in Figures 3, 4, and 5. The variation in In 1742-RP, load factors for various office spaces are
the diversity factor is smaller during the weekend than determined using equipment peak heat gain and diversity
during weekdays because of less equipment use on the factor data. Some of the office spaces shown in Table 3 are
weekend. Also, the variation in diversity factor is small identical to the office spaces in the load factor table (Table
between different weekdays. 11 in Chapter 18) of the 2013 Handbook. However, some


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additional use types are added

TABLE 3 Plug load factors.10
to Table 3 for offices with laptop
docking stations. The vari- TYPE OF USE 2013 ASHRAE 2017 ASHRAE DESCRIPTION
ous office spaces are defined HANDBOOK, W/FT 2 HANDBOOK, W/FT 2
100% Laptop
based on the mix of used office Docking Station NA 0.34 167 ft2/Workstation
1 Printer Per 10
equipment, ranging from 100% Light
100% Laptop
laptop docking station use, one Docking Station NA 0.46 125 ft2/Workstation
1 Printer Per 10
printer, and no screens to 100% Medium
desktop use, one printer, and 50% Laptop
Docking Station 167 ft2/Workstation
NA 0.44
three screens. A full on worst- Light 1 Printer Per 10
case scenario is added that (50% Laptop/50% Desktop)
50% Laptop
assumes no diversity factor for Docking Station
NA 0.59 125 ft2/Workstation
Medium 1 Printer Per 10
any of the involved equipment. (50% Laptop/50% Desktop)
For each case, a light, medium, 100% Laptop 125 ft2/Workstation
and heavy equipment density Docking Station
2 Screens
NA 0.69
2 Screens, 1 Printer Per 10
(e.g., 167 ft2, 125 ft2, or 85 ft2 per 100% Laptop 85 ft2/Workstation
workstation, respectively) is Docking Station NA 1.14
2 Screens, 1 Printer Per 8, No Diversity
Full 0n, 2 Screens
used to evaluate representative 100% Desktop 167 ft2/Workstation
0.60 0.54
W/ft2 load factors. Light 1 Screen, 1 Printer Per 10
100% Desktop 125 ft2/Workstation
0.80 0.72
Medium 1 Screen, 1 Printer Per 10
Conclusions and Future Work 100% Desktop 1.00 0.84 125 ft2/Workstation
The updated load factor 2 Screens 2 Screens, 1 Printer Per 10
100% Desktop 125 ft2/Workstation
values in the 2017 ASHRAE 3 Screens NA 0.96
3 Screens, 1 Printer Per 10
Handbook—Fundamentals ranged 100% Desktop 1.50 1.02 85 ft2/Workstation
from 0.34 W/ft2 (3.67 W/m2) to Heavy, 2 Screens 2 Screens, 1 Printer Per 8
100% Desktop 85 ft2/Workstation
a more conservative value of Heavy, 3 Screens NA 1.16
3 Screens, 1 Printer Per 8
1.53 W/ft2 (16.48 W/m2). The 100% Desktop 2.00 1.33 85 ft2/Workstation
Full On, 2 Screens 2 Screens, 1 Printer Per 8, No Diversity
updated load factor values 100% Desktop 85 ft2/Workstation
NA 1.53
are 10% to 33% lower than the Full On, 3 Screens 3 Screens, 1 Printer Per 8, No Diversity
NA = Not Applicable.
values in the 2009 ASHRAE
Note: A medium-sized office-type monochrome printer is used for load factor calculation with peak heat gain of 142 W.6
Handbook—Fundamentals, and Light case refers to the largest area/workstation, i.e., 167 ft2/workstation (least equipment density).
the same 2009 Handbook load Medium case refers to the medium area/workstation, i.e., 125 ft2/workstation (medium equipment density).
factor values were repeated in Heavy case refers to the smallest area/workstation, i.e., 85 ft2/workstation (highest equipment density) with diversity
factor applied.
the 2013 Handbook. The change Full On case refers to the smallest area/workstation, i.e., 85 ft2/workstation with no diversity factor applied.
in the load factor values is due
to the use of laptop docking stations becoming more monitoring subcommittee (PMS). However, detailed anal-
common in work environments. ysis is required to estimate the actual effect of 15-minute
Peak heat gain of the printer used in the calculation of peak heat gain of various equipment on the surrounding’s
load factors for the 2017 ASHRAE Handbook—Fundamentals was temperature in the future.
found to be 30% lower than the 2013 Handbook value. Also, The small variation in the load factors of various office
old CRT monitors have been replaced by new LCD screens. spaces from 2009 to 2017 suggests the next update to the
In addition, we observed an increased use of multiple LCD load factors is only necessary with another major shift in
screens per computer, reducing the energy savings benefit office equipment use. Desktop computers are now being
of the transition from single CRT to multiple LCD screens. replaced with laptop docking stations and tablets. Also,
A conservative value of 15-minute averaging interval for larger curved LCD screens with increased power consump-
equipment peak heat gain and diversity factor estimation tion than the LCD screens tested for the 2017 Handbook are
was selected based on the feedback of RP-1742’s project being introduced in some offices. The net overall effect onto



load factors is small. However, the possible introduction com/yamu9f98. doi:10.1080/23744731.2017.1365766

7. Wilkins, C.K., N. McGaffin. 1994. “Measuring computer
of new types of office equipment with substantial power equipment loads in office buildings.” ASHRAE Journal 36(8):21 – 24.
consumption and/or drastic changes in the power manage- 8. Wilkins, C.K., M.H. Hosni. 2011. “Plug load design factors.”
ment capabilities of the equipment measured in 1742-RP ASHRAE Journal 53(5):30 – 34.
9. Moorefield, L., B. Frazer, P. Bendt. 2008. “Office Plug Load
will necessitate the update of heat gain and load factor data. Field Monitoring Report.” Ecos Consulting.
10. Sarfraz, O., C.K. Bach. 2017. “Update to office equipment diver-
References sity and load factors (ASHRAE 1742-RP).” Science and Technology for the
1. Sheppy, M., C. Lobato, S. Pless, L. Gentile-Polese, P. Torcel- Built Environment. doi:10.1080/237447
lini. 2011. “Assessing and Reducing Plug and Process Loads in Office 31.2017.1365765.
Buildings.” National Renewable Energy Laboratory. 11. Lamano, A.S., W. Xiangyu, Z. Jian, B. Seshadri. 2015. “Office
Plug Load Metering Study on NTU Campus.” http://ecocampus.ntu.
2. NBI. 2012. “Plug Load Best Practices Guide: Managing Your Of-
fice Equipment Plug Load.” New Buildings Institute. https://tinyurl.
12. Sheppy, M., P. Torcellini, L. Gentile-Polese. 2014. “An Analysis
3. Roth, K., K. Mckenney, C. Paetsch, R. Ponoum. 2008. “U.S. of Plug Load Capacities and Power Requirements in Commercial
residential miscellaneous electric loads electricity consumption.” Buildings.” National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
2008 ACEEE Summer Study on Energy Efficiency in Buildings. 13. Metzger, I., A. Kandt, O. VanGeet, O. 2011. “Plug load behav-
4. Hosni, M.H., B.T. Beck. 2009. “Update to Measurements of ioral change demonstration project.” No. NREL/TP-7A40-52248.
Office Equipment Heat Gain Data.” ASHRAE Research Project RP- National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
1482, Final Report. 14. Srinivasan, R.S., J. Lakshmanan, D. Srivastav, E. Santosa. 2011.
5. Hosni, M.H., B.W. Jones, H. Xu. 1999. “Measurement of Heat “Benchmarking plug-load densities for K – 12 schools.” Proceedings of
Gain and Radiant Convective Split from Equipment in Buildings.” Building Simulation 2011, 12th Conference of International Building Perfor-
ASHRAE Research Project RP-1055, Final Report. mance Simulation Association, 2746 – 2752.
6. Sarfraz, O., C.K. Bach. 2017. “Experimental methodology and 15. CEC. 2004. “Building Energy Efficiency Standards for Residen-
results for heat gains from various office equipment (ASHRAE RP- tial and Nonresidential Buildings. California Code of Regulations, Title
1742).” Science and Technology for the Built Environment. https://tinyurl. 24. California Energy Commission.

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Loads and Energy

Tiny Houses, Big HVAC?


Through TV shows, websites, and other popular media, a relatively new class of
affordable residences, “tiny houses,” is attracting home buyers’ interest but so far has
not undergone much scrutiny from the engineering community. The author became
interested in this topic because when he was young his family “summered” in very
small cabins and sometimes vacationed in towed-campers—both share similarities
with modern tiny houses that are generally defined as being 400 ft2 (37.2 m2) in floor
area or smaller.
While many aspects of these new, freestanding houses variables’ examined were load calculation method,
are comparable to their much larger, conventional orientation, location, and window glazing type. For
brethren, other features differ or are still developing. conventional housing in the author’s region, HVAC sys-
As examples of the latter, construction of tiny houses tems are usually sized with a 500 to 700 ft2/ton (13.2 to
may not meet completely current building codes, find- 18.5 m2/kW) rule-of-thumb; ACCA Manual J calculations1
ing legal sites for them can be difficult, and their HVAC are possible yet are often not required or the require-
needs may vary. However, the desires for both afford- ment is not rigorously enforced. This study tests the sys-
able housing as well as a simpler way of life make this tem sizing rule-of-thumb when applied to tiny houses’
new type of residence attractive to many people. If peculiarities.
not utilized by occupants as their primary homes, tiny
houses are often intended as vacation, “mother-in-law,” Why Tiny Houses?
guest, or rental residences. Potential tiny house (TH) owners are attracted to the
This study’s goals were to, from an HVAC design idea of downsizing—dramatically—to simplify their
engineer’s perspective, define a base case, evaluate lives and finances. Owning, outright, a large, tradi-
the HVAC needs for it, and then to predict the house’s tional house is often also not possible for many people,
HVAC-related annual energy consumption. With the especially when young. And employment may require
base case defined and evaluated, our HVAC rules-of- periodic relocation, or, because of telecommuting, some
thumb and design, construction, and system varia- vocations such as coding, transcribing, and customer
tions could then be studied; for this initial article, the service do not require physically being near employers.

Brian A. Rock is an associate professor for architectural engineering at the University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kan.



Another group of potential TH owners are retirees FIGURE 1 Floor plan and elevations for a generic tiny house of a popular, towable size.
who want to simplify their dwellings so that they can
focus their time and other resources on out-of-house
Tiny houses meet a need that differs somewhat from
recreational vehicles (RVs or “motorhomes”) that are
intended for part-time use and very frequent reloca-
tion. Factory-assembled, full-time occupancy “manu-
North Elevation West Elevation
factured-housing,” aka, “trailer houses” of the single- or
double-wide varieties, for example, are generally too Bath
big, too hard to move, or otherwise unattractive to this
group of owners, too. Tiny-seekers’ desire for their
houses to be relocatable vary, so there are two distinct Loft Above
varieties of THs so far, “tiny houses on wheels” (THOWs) Living
and “tiny houses on foundations” (THOFs). Due to the (Vaulted Ceiling)
ability to build the first type almost anywhere, move
them to sites, and then to relocate fairly easily in the East Elevation
future, THOWs are currently the most popular. As such, N Floor Plan
a THOW is the assumed geometry for this study; look Tiny House on Wheels
for a paper on THOFs’ differences in performance in the 160 ft2 Floor Area + Loft
8×20 ft Plan
future. 13.5 ft Overall Height

This Figure Not for Construction

Base Design
The building for this study is modeled after a typical
design by THOW builder Dan Louche, and is shown in South Elevation
Figure 1. His popular book describes the basics of building
such THs starting from the custom trailer then on up.2 or fiberglass like RVs, tiny houses’ shells are normally
Architectural plans for buildings are inherently copy- built with conventional, widely available “dimensional”
righted in the U.S., so should not be used by others for lumber and are often covered, both inside and out, with
commercial reasons without permission; for do-it-your- “high end” finishes. On a cost per unit floor area basis,
selfers, tiny home builders and others sell licenses for most THs are not cheap houses, often costing US$250 or
designs and materials’ lists, usually via their websites. more per square foot ($2700/m2). Half that cost per unit
Each of these tiny houses typically have, by definition, area is the national average for new, traditional, yet far
a really small kitchen, a half- or three-quarters bath- larger houses on foundations.
room, a living/working space, a sleeping area, and usu- Due to U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT)
ally not much more. Storage space is minimal; conven- restrictions, tiny houses on wheels cannot be wider than
tional clothes-closets are luxuries, for example. Ceilings 8.5 ft (2.6 m) nor taller than 13.5 ft (4.11 m) for normal
are almost always “open,” “vaulted,” or “cathedral,” so travel on U.S. highways. Widths can be greater with a
attics or other unconditioned spaces are also not com- wide-load permit for moving them, but escort cars and
mon. Some designs include porches, fold-out decks, other requirements make wide THOWs less popular.
and/or overhangs to extend living space to the outdoors. Using dual-axle flat-bed steel trailers for their bases are
Tiny house living is, in many ways, similar to living most common, but some THOWs use stripped-down
permanently in an RV. Because of RVs’ long history in trucks or buses; a trailer is assumed for this study. To
the U.S., optimized household equipment, of RV-scale, allow for the trailers’ wheels, THOW floor plans are
is readily available, but most operates on 12 vdc where typically about 8 ft (2.4 m) wide which leaves only 0.5 ft
THs typically use 120 vac. Also, RVs usually have genera- (0.15 m) total for protrusions such as roof eaves. Lengths
tors where most THOWs do not. Instead of riveted metal vary, but for economic as well as practical towing



reasons, 20 ft (6.1 m), not including a trailer’s tongue, is was used to estimate the annual indoor energy con-
popular when a low occupancy, often one or two people, sumption. Input data, typical for the THOW shown in
is intended. These dimensions yield a first-floor TH Figure 1, was then needed.
area, based on the outside, of 160 ft2 (14.9 m2). Having
a loft within a TH is very popular, typically to provide a Building Envelope
sleeping area of about 6 to 8 ft (1.8 to 2.4 m) in length. Tiny houses, so far, tend to be very conventional in
Thus, with a loft, the floor area for this size TH is often their construction via wood-framing, insulation, and
stated either as the base’s 160 ft2 (14.9 m2) or up to about cladding available at many big-box home centers or
224 ft2 (20.8 m2) when including the loft’s space; either contractor-supply stores. One difference is usually the
way, such a THOW is more than an order of magnitude finish of the walls’ interiors – gypsum wallboard and
smaller in floor area than the typical new U.S. single grouted tile are often shunned for THOWs in favor of
family house of about 2600 ft2 (242 m2). Ceiling heights paneling, tongue-and-groove wood planks, and vinyl
in THs’ bathrooms and lofts are often lower than the flooring or carpeting to reduce cracking during moves.
U.S.’s 8 ft (2.4 m) norm due to the need for THOWs to be Foam-board insulation, typically extruded polystyrene
13.5 ft (4.11 m) tall or less overall, including their trailers, (XPS), or spray-foams are favored over fiberglass batts
but their living areas usually have high ceilings when- or loose fill to add rigidity and limit perceived settling.
ever lofts are not overhead. Roofs are usually sloped in Another difference is the attempt to reduce the amount
one or two directions for rain and snow shedding, but of framing which often improves the area-weighted
flat roofs are used too. Overall aerodynamics, to mini- thermal resistances (R-values). An assumption for typi-
mize drag while towing, are largely ignored in THOW cal wood-frame construction is that the wall, roof, and
designs, so far. Additionally, THOWs are generally “high- floors areas are 20% lumber and 80% insulated cavities;
profile” and have high centers of gravity, so great care is it varies, but for this study’s tiny house a 15% framing
needed when towing them as well as to secure them on estimate is better and thus increases the percent of areas
their sites against windstorms and strong earthquakes. with insulation to 85%.
With the typical lap siding, building wrap, ply-
Load and Energy Calculations wood sheathing, “2 × 4” wood-stud framing or 3.5 in.
To predict the appropriate size HVAC system for such (89 mm) of XPS, air/moisture retarder, and interior
a THOW, first the occupants’ expectations need to be wood paneling, the area-adjusted R-value for the walls,
defined. Many occupants intend, at least initially, to via data from the ASHRAE Handbook’s tables,5 is about
“rough it” with little or no HVAC. Frozen pipes and 18.7 h∙ft2∙°F/Btu (3.29 m2∙K/W]), typically meeting
fingers in the first winter often change their minds, as or exceeding local building code’s R-13 to R-15 mini-
does the inability to sleep well in the summer due to mum. In conventional houses, roofs’ rafters are deep,
heat and humidity. Natural ventilation can, for many e.g., 2×8s. However, tiny houses’ sloped roofs are often
hours of a year, meet the thermal loads depending on framed with only 2×4s due to their short spans. With XPS
the climate and the internal loads. However, this initial insulation and metal roofing, the wood-area adjusted
study assumes occupancy where the all-electric HVAC R-value of this house’s roof is about 17.9 h∙ft2∙°F/Btu
system is utilized year ‘round simulating, for example, (3.15 m2∙K/W); this value is well below that suggested
someone with allergy, security, noise, or other concerns or required for new houses’ energy conservation, e.g.,
that would minimize windows’ use for ventilation and R-30+.6 Tiny houses on wheels’ floors are also typi-
conditioning. cally 2×4 construction, vs. 2×8 or 2×10 for conventional
For conventional houses, Manual J is the typical houses, although the THOWs floors are placed on top of
approach used for load calculations; it uses a modified the metal frames of their trailers. With XPS insulation,
version of ASHRAE’s CLTD/CLF method.3 One goal of thicker plywood decking, and thin vinyl flooring, the
this study was to observe the effect of various load calcu- floor’s composite R-value is again similar to that of the
lation techniques on this new class of buildings, so one walls and roof at 17.6 h∙ft2∙°F/Btu (3.1 m2∙K/W). However,
of several widely used commercial programs that allows because these are “exposed floors” their R-values are
many algorithms was used.4 In addition, this same code typically below the R-25 or more required by codes for



conventional buildings in all except warm climates. This FIGURE 2 A tiny, one-room house of old that had seven occupants. “HVAC” was a
apparent under-insulation of roofs and floors is due wood stove, natural ventilation and sleeping outside in hot weather. (Photo cour-
tesy of the Rocks and Kubis/Gamroth family archives.)
to the need to keep THOWs’ overall height below 13.5 ft
(4.11 m). Tiny houses’ envelopes are often constructed
extremely well, so their thermal performance can be
quite good due to reduced infiltration and thermal
bridging; a performance, rather than prescriptive-only,
path to energy code compliance may be appropriate for
well-constructed tiny houses.
Exterior windows and doors are typically conventional
with double-pane glazing for windows and insulated
steel or solid wood for doors. Screened, operable win-
dows, placed both high and low, would encourage use
of cross- and buoyancy-flow natural ventilation, and if
employed in the bathroom and kitchen, may eliminate
the requirement for exhaust fans. However, with THs
being very tight and of small interior air volume, mois-
ture-control becomes critical. Most THOWs seek to be
high-performing, energy-wise, so low-e-coated double-
pane windows were assumed for this study’s base case.
Due to the TH’s small exterior yet need for standard- mainstream. A fairly conventional, modern occupancy
sized windows for views, ventilation, and fire egress, the is assumed for this article. While most load and energy
percent window-to-wall area is a fairly high 14% in this calculations use a watts-per-unit-floor-area approach
study. No skylights were included, but some THs have for estimating lighting and equipment heat gains, tiny
one or more and they are often operable to enhance nat- houses’ nature makes defining specific internal heat
ural ventilation; some RV-like roof “hatches” incorporate sources easy. Equipment spec-sheets are readily avail-
exhaust-only or reversible fans. able from manufacturers via the Internet.
Lighting is mostly overhead and minimal, but task
People, Lights, and Equipment lights in the sleeping and living areas are common.
For most North American observers it would be dif- LED or compact fluorescent was assumed; a total of
ficult to imagine even one person living in such tiny an 150 W was used for overhead, and 50 W for task light-
abode. However some tiny house owners intend for two ing. Equipment is also typically minimal; the study
adult occupants, possibly children, too, and often one included a laptop computer (50 W), a modem/router
or more pets. Figure 2 shows a single-room tiny house (6 W), a 32-inch flat screen TV (45 W), a set-top box (60
in northern Montana from a mid-1910s homestead – W), cell phone charger (5 W), small ceiling fan (55 W), a
within it were not only a married couple but also their dual-element cooktop (2 × 1500 W), a small microwave
five young children, including the author’s then-future oven (600 W), a small refrigerator (100 W), a coffee
father, so high occupant-densities were not uncommon maker (700 W), a very small 120V combination washer/
in the past. For this base-establishing study of a modern dryer (1440 W), a special tank-type water heater (900
TH, only two occupants will be assumed with one being W), an alarm-clock (2 W), and infrequently used mis-
an adult human and the other a large dog; the effect of cellaneous devices (25 W). Ovens are rare except in
different occupancies, human or otherwise, is a variable larger versions of these simple residences, and some
for future study. THs do use propane for cooking or water-heating, for
The other internal heat gains for tiny houses are tra- example. This study’s all-electric devices were sched-
ditional, but in some ways are greatly reduced. Many uled, including diversity of use, for a typical week with
owners will be extremely energy-conscientious and use the occupant’s employment being outside the home
super-efficient devices, while other occupants are more Monday through Friday. The large dog was modeled as



FIGURE 3 Peak cooling load using various calculation procedures for this THOW FIGURE 4 Distribution of the peak cooling and heating loads’ components for
in Topeka, Kan. The TETD-TA1 method, popular with HVAC design engineers for Topeka, Kan. Windows’ and doors’ (W&D) conduction is shown separately from the
decades, was used for the remainder of this study. solar heat gain through their glazings.

14,000 4,500
Cooling Heating
Design Cooling Load (Btu/h)


Design Load (Btu/h)

13,500 3,500
13,000 2,500
12,000 1,000
11,500 0







Window &










Cooling Load Calculation Method Component of Total Design Load

being indoors, and temperature setbacks used, while (W&D) conduction heat loss, as well as the walls’, are the
the worker was away. largest parts of the peak heating load.

Ventilation and Infiltration Effect of Orientation

As is typical in most U.S. houses, ventilation is through Because the base case is a tiny house on wheels, its
infiltration, intentional use of operable windows, and, orientation on a site can vary. When moved later to
if any, exhaust fans. Via TH experience of others, having another site, near or distant, the TH’s orientation likely
kitchen and bath exhaust fans that vent to the exterior
are recommended even if not required. Due to very tight
envelope construction, makeup air ports are needed,
too.7 Blower-door and tracer gas studies would be ben-
eficial to find the typical ranges of air exchange in THs;
for this study’s calculations, 0.4 air changes per hour
(ach) infiltration, adjusted for weather, was used and
was based on estimates found online.

Base-Case’s Loads and Energy Use

With the design engineer-type data-gathering com-
plete and assumptions made, the base THOW was
evaluated with the software for Topeka, Kan., which has
both hot/humid summers and cold/dry winters. The
software used the conventional “UA∆T” method for find-
ing the peak design heating load; it was a low 6,171 Btu/h
(1.81 kW) due to the well-insulated and -sealed envelope.
Various cooling load methodologies are available in the
software, and Figure 3 presents the results which do vary
significantly. As the base case, the popular TETD-TA1
method yielded a cooling load of 12,630 Btu/h (3.7 kW),
just over 1 tonR (3.52 kW), with this peak occurring in
July at 6 p.m., the hour when the worker is home and
cooking dinner. Figure 4 shows that equipment and the
solar heat gain through windows are the major con-
tributors to the peak cooling load, and window and door



FIGURE 5 For the base case’s THOW in Topeka, how the peak cooling load varies FIGURE 6 The annual HVAC energy consumption does not vary much with orienta-
with trailer orientation. The peak design heating load, which does not include solar tion for the base THOW sited in Topeka, Kan.
or internal heat gains, is not affected greatly by house orientation.

2,500 Cooling Energy Heating Energy


Annual Energy Use (kWh/yr)

12,500 2,000
Design Cooling Load (Btu/h)

12,000 1,500

11,500 1,000

11,000 500

10,500 0
10,000 Orientation of the THOW’s Trailer-Tongue
Orientation of the THOW’s Trailer-Tongue
possibly a wide range of climates. Keeping the base
case’s other factors constant, Figures 7 and 8 show how
will change. The base-case orientation for this study is the design loads and annual energy use can vary when
with the door facing south and the trailer’s tongue to the this study’s THOW is relocated. A full, typical year at
north as shown in Figure 1. This THOW has a fairly uni- each site was assumed. As expected, the design cooling
form distribution of windows on its four exterior walls, load increases with hotter climates, and the heating load
but Figure 5 does show that they still affect significantly increases in colder climates. The variation in heating
the peak cooling load depending on how the house is load is greater than for the cooling load, percentage-
oriented. Setting the long axis of the house East-West wise, because peak summer design-conditions aren’t
instead of North-South results in the lowest peak cooling typically that dramatically different across much of the
loads, especially when the smallest window area of the U.S. However, the hours per year needed for cooling or
house’s tongue-side faces the low, afternoon sunshine. heating do vary greatly with climate as shown by the
To estimate the energy consumption of this THOW, estimates for annual cooling and heating energy use in
the HVAC equipment needed to be sized. From the load Figure 8. For mild-winter locations, due to the well-con-
calculations for many locations, a design-decision was structed envelope, this THOW’s internal loads can meet
to use a 1.2 tonR (4.2 kW) , U.S. code-minimum 13 SEER most if not all the space-heating needs. Mechanical cool-
air conditioner and a 2.5 kW electric-resistance heating ing and dehumidification is needed almost everywhere,
coil. Through-the-wall unitary equipment is popular in though, when the windows are kept closed.
THOWs, as are mini-splits; in the software a similar PTAC Figure 9 shows the predicted month-by-month total
unit, with raised efficiency parameters, was utilized. energy consumption for the house in four very differ-
Figure 6, for Topeka, shows that the estimated annual ent climates. For all, however, the peak demand is in
cooling and heating energy use should not vary much the summer via the need for air-conditioning. Another
with this house’s orientation. Including other interior peak occurs in winter for space-heating, but is much
electricity uses, but not any exterior, and assuming the lower except in the coldest climates. For all the results,
national average $0.12/kWh, the energy cost should be the software used its reduced-set typical year weather
about $1,050 per year for this THOW. Actual energy use data; both the actual peak cooling and heating loads and
and cost would, of course, vary significantly due to use energy use will vary significantly with real weather con-
of windows, different temperature setpoints, higher or ditions that do change year to year.
lower occupancy, and many other factors.
Effect of Windows’ Glazing
Effect of Location Finally, due to the many options available to home-
Most of these tiny houses, including the one studied owners, several common window glazing types were
here, are on wheels and are thus intended for use in studied for Topeka, Kan. Figure 10 shows that, as



FIGURE 7 With North orientation, how the THOW’s peak cooling and heating loads FIGURE 8 Annual energy consumption for cooling and heating only in various loca-
vary by location in the United States. tions with the THOW’s orientation being North.

14,000 Cooling Load Heating Load 4,000 Cooling Energy Heating Energy

Annual Energy Use (kWh/yr)

12,000 3,500
Design Load (Btu/h)

6,000 1,500
4,000 1,000
2,000 500
0 0

Albany, N.Y.
Anchorage, Alaska
Boise, Idaho
Columbus, Ohio

Madison, Wis.
Minot, N.D.
Nashville, Tenn.
Orlando, Fla.
Portland, Ore.
San Antonio
Topeka, Kan.
Tucson, Ariz.
Albany, N.Y.
Anchorage, Alaska
Boise, Idaho
Columbus, Ohio
Madison, Wis.
Minot, N.D.
Nashville, Tenn.
Orlando, Fla.
Portland, Ore.
San Antonio
Topeka, Kan.
Tucson, Ariz.

expected, having windows with a single layer of clear,

FIGURE 9 Monthly total indoor energy use for the base, all-electric THOW with
high-iron glass will have both higher peak heating and North orientation, for four diverse weather sites in the U.S.
cooling loads than double-glazing, as is also shown in
the figure. Additionally, and also as expected, an e-coat- 1,000 Atlanta
Minot, N.D.
ing on the double-glazing decreases the solar heat gains 950
Topeka, Kan.
Monthly Energy Use (kWh)

900 Tucson, Ariz.

further thus reducing the cooling load but not dramati-
cally the heating load. Figure 11, for the predicted annual 800
energy consumption, shows the expected large reduc- 750
tion in heating energy when upgrading from single to 700
double glazing. However, unexpectedly, the annual 650
cooling energy in Topeka increased slightly by going from 600
single to double, clear glazing. This result requires fur-
ther study, and should not be considered applicable to Jan. Feb. Mar. Apr. May Jun. Jul. Aug. Sep. Oct. Nov. Dec.
other situations–it may be due to a quirk in the geometry Typical Weather Year
or the weather-year data for Topeka, for example. Or
it may be due to the hour-by-hour temperature differ- behave, thermally, a little more like commercial build-
ences, especially at night, in combination with the well- ings, loads-wise, than standard houses from an HVAC
insulated enclosure and high internal loads. When the designer’s point-of-view.
e-coating was added to the double-glazing, the cooling The calculations showed that for this study’s base
energy was slightly reduced vs. single or double, clear 160 ft2 (14.9 m2) THOW the design load equates to
glazing, and thus returned to that expected. 152 ft2/ton (4.02 m2/kW) for cooling and dehumidifica-
tion in Topeka. This is much lower than the rule-of-
Conclusions thumb of 500 to 700 ft2/ton (13.2 to 18.5 m2/kW) for this
This study of the predicted design loads and annual region’s conventional houses. Through-the-wall/PTAC or
energy use in THOWs, for cooling and heating and using mini-split air conditioners are typically used in THOWs,
typical HVAC engineering design methods and software, and fortunately appropriate-capacity and high-effi-
showed that THOWs, unlike their conventional single- ciency systems are widely available. Finding units that
family house brethren, are internal-loads dominated provide adequate moisture removal is important; this
rather than shell-dominated. This is due to tiny houses’ study’s base case in Topeka showed a needed cooling-
high people, lights, and equipment heat gains per unit coil sensible heat ratio (SHR) of 0.94, an easily-achiev-
floor area as well as their small, typically well-con- able value if the windows are kept closed. However,
structed and highly insulated enclosures. As such, THs with exhaust fans in operation, or a sensible-heat-only



air-to-air heat exchanger in use, the needed SHR could FIGURE 10 How the peak design cooling and heating loads vary with glazing type for
be much lower and thus harder to achieve, especially at the THOW in Topeka, Kan., with North orientation. The infiltration rate was not varied.
part-load. Variable speed HVAC units, aka “with invert-
ers” for fans as well compressors, are recommended 18,000 Cooling Load Heating Load

for energy conservation as well as potentially improved 16,000

moisture removal during part-load cooling. Units that

Design Load (Btu/h)

include heat pump mode are also available, but may be
limited in availability due to the typical 120 vac-only,
rather than 120/240 vac, used in many tiny homes.
Although a different distribution of some windows 4,000
to other walls of this study’s base THOW would affect 2,000
the results, in general the orientation of the house 0
Single-Clear Double-Clear Double-Coated
doesn’t have a large influence on the peak heating or
cooling loads, nor the annual energy consumption. Window’s Glazings
Geographic location does have a logical effect on peak
FIGURE 11 For the same orientation and location used for Figure 10, the variation
heating loads in this relatively well-insulated build- in annual cooling and heating energy use with different window glazings.
ing. Cooling energy consumption, in terms of quantity
Cooling Energy Heating Energy
and not local-utility-influenced cost, also shows a mild 3,000
effect due to location because natural ventilation was
Annual Energy Use (kWh/yr)

not included; mild climates would show a dramatic
reduction in cooling energy use if the occupants use, 2,000
properly, operable windows or economizer mechanical 1,500
ventilation systems.
Designers of future tiny houses can benefit by review-
ing the innovations tried through the many entries to 500
the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon and 0
similar competitions. For the 2017 Decathalon, student- Single-Clear Double-Clear Double-Coated
built houses are to be much larger, 600 to 1,000 ft2 Window’s Glazings
(56 to 93 m2), than most THs.8 However, in all the years
of the competition, many interesting features have been Acknowledgments
used that improve sustainability, as well as function and This project was supported by the University of Kansas
appearance, and are likely appropriate for some THs. (KU) and Rock Consulting Engineers, both of or near
Many potential TH owners intend their houses for off- Lawrence, Kan.
grid locations, so integrating renewable energy systems
into their houses’ designs would reduce their depen- References
dency on conventional fuels. 1. ACCA. 2016. Manual J, Residential Load Calculations. Arlington,
Va.: Air Conditioning Contractors of America.
Construction code-development for tiny houses is 2. Louche, D. 2016. Tiny House Design & Construction Guide, 2nd ed.
underway. A significant advancement was made recently Tilt Development.
through the efforts of Andrew Morrison that resulted 3. Rudoy, W., J. Cuba. 1979. Cooling and Heating Load Calculation
Manual. Atlanta: ASHRAE.
in the approval of RB168-16 for the 2018 International 4. Trane, 2017. Trane TRACE® load and energy calculation soft-
Residential Code (IRC). As with anything new, experi- ware. La Crosse, Wis.: The Trane Company.
ence gained over the years will help guide code-develop- 5. 2017 ASHRAE Handbook—Fundamentals.
6. U.S. DOE. 2008. “Insulation Fact Sheet.” DOE/CE-0180, the
ment and lead to improved designs. And if these build- U.S. Department of Energy.
ings continue to attract increasing consumer interest, 7. Morrison, A. Jan. 19, 2016. “How to Save Your Tiny House from
new, dedicated products will be developed and will help Mold.”
make these tiny houses one of the next big things even if 8. U.S. DOE. 2017. U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon®
their HVAC systems can be fairly small. competition.



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Contact your Greenheck rep today | | 715-359-6171



Zero energy schools engage students to meet educational as well as energy

goals, exemplified by this rooftop solar laboratory at Discovery Elementary
School in Arlington, Va. VMDO Architects/©Lincoln Barbour.

Advanced Energy Design Guide KÐ12

Next Generation of
School Design & Operation

Driven by energy-efficiency advances and renewable energy cost reductions, zero

energy buildings are popping up all around the country. Although zero energy repre-
sents a bold paradigm shift—from buildings that consume energy to buildings that
produce enough energy to meet their energy needs on an annual basis—it isn’t a
sudden shift. Zero energy buildings are the result of steady, incremental progress by
researchers and building professionals working together to improve building energy

ASHRAE is taking the lead by publishing—in part- Zero Energy (K–12 ZE AEDG) is the first in this series.
nership with the American Institute of Architects All the AEDGs are free downloads from ASHRAE
(AIA), the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES), (
and the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and
with financial and technical support from the A Little History
U.S. Department of Energy (DOE)—a new series of When the AEDGs debuted in 2004, the idea was to
advanced energy design guides (AEDGs) focused on show the market how easy it was to achieve a 30% sav-
zero energy buildings. The forthcoming Advanced ings over ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-1999,
Energy Design Guide for K–12 School Buildings: Achieving Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential
Buildings. Energy modeling was used to pre-compute
Paul A. Torcellini, Ph.D., P.E., is a principal engineer at National Renewable Energy a series of solutions, and the AEDGs provided practi-
Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colo., and is on the faculty at Eastern Connecticut State
University in Willimantic, Conn. Shanti Pless is a senior energy efficiency researcher at cal guidance on how to hit the 30% energy reduction
NREL. They have each chaired several Advanced Energy Design Guides. goal.1 In 2004, only a few zero energy buildings existed,



School Case Studies

For more details on these schools, see the Advanced Energy
Design Guide for K-12 School Buildings: Achieving Zero Energy.

Discovery Elementary School

A zero energy school can create a culture in which
students, teachers, and parents understand how their
actions contribute to maintaining zero energy each year.
Discovery Elementary in Arlington, Va., is an impres-


sive example of such a school that has also exceeded its
energy target expectations.
Energy Data
Predicted EUI: 21.1 kBtu/ft2·yr (239.6 MJ/m2·yr)
Predicted RE: 21.5 kBtu/ft2·yr (244.2 MJ/m2·yr)
Predicted Net EUI: –0.4 kBtu/ft2·yr (–45.4 MJ/m2·yr) Discovery Elementary School students enjoy interacting with the real-time
data displayed on the energy dashboard and learning about their school’s
Actual EUI: 15.8 kBtu/ft2·yr (179.4 MJ/m2·yr) photovoltaic system.
Actual RE: 19.0 kBtu/ft2·yr (215.8 MJ/m2·yr)
Actual Net EUI: –3.1 kBtu/ft2·yr (–35.2 MJ/m2·yr)

Richard J. Lee Elementary School

The Coppell Independent School District set out to
construct a 21st century school that is sustainable while


providing the best educational environment for the stu-
dents. The Richard J. Lee Elementary School in Dallas fits
the bill, coming close to zero energy with a low energy
use intensity and a 358 kW solar photovoltaic system.
Energy Data
Predicted EUI: 18.5 kBtu/ft2·yr (210.1 MJ/m2·yr)
Predicted RE: 18.3 kBtu/ft2·yr (207.8 MJ/m2·yr)
Predicted Net EUI: 0.2 kBtu/ft2·yr (2.3 MJ/m2·yr) The Richard J. Lee Elementary School near Dallas is the first zero energy
elementary school in Texas, and it integrates its sustainability features with an
Actual EUI: 18.9 kBtu/ft2·yr (214.6 MJ/m2·yr) innovative educational approach to engage and motivate students.
Actual RE: 16.9 kBtu/ft2·yr (191.9 MJ/m2·yr)
Actual Net EUI: 2.0 kBtu/ft2·yr (22.7 MJ/m2·yr)

Dearing Elementary School

Dearing Elementary School in Pflugerville, Texas, is
one of the first zero energy ready schools built in Central

Texas. Its innovative design incorporates opportunities

for teaching and learning into every aspect of the school.
A sophisticated energy management system helps staff
make informed decisions about future energy activities.
Energy Data
Predicted EUI: 19 kBtu/ft2·yr (215.8 MJ/m2·yr)
Actual EUI: 23.58 kBtu/ft2·yr (267.79 MJ/m2·yr) The zero energy ready Dearing Elementary School in Pflugerville, Texas, com-
bines an innovative design that includes multiple opportunities for teaching and
learning with digital displays that show the building’s energy use.



largely because energy-efficiency technologies were operating a zero energy school. The project committee
expensive; the cost of renewables was very high; and the was tasked with creating comprehensive design guid-
details of zero energy design, construction, and opera- ance to achieve zero energy in school buildings by look-
tion weren’t well understood.2 ing at aggressive market-ready energy-efficiency strate-
gies that reduce energy use to the point that a PV system
Fast Forward 13 Years. can meet the remaining energy loads.
Since 2004, ASHRAE, AIA, IES, USGBC, and DOE com-
pleted a set of 30% guides and later produced a series Why Schools?
of 50% guides that further pushed commercial build- The decision to focus on K–12 schools for ASHRAE’s
ing energy-efficiency limits, the number of energy first zero energy AEDG was based on several factors.
simulation tools has multiplied, and the ability to First, a number of schools have been built over the last
execute thousands of simulations in the cloud is a real- few years that either are zero energy or could be if a PV
ity (who’d even heard of the cloud in 2004?). The cost of system was added to their rooftops.
solar photovoltaic (PV) systems—the renewable energy In addition, schools are generally high profile build-
technology considered in the K–12 ZE AEDG—has also ings with considerable educational impact and influ-
dropped 70% and the cost of many energy-efficiency ence on students, teachers, parents, and the community
technologies has also dropped.3,4 at large. Schools tend to be one to three stories, which
In 2007, a National Renewable Energy Laboratory helps make zero energy an achievable goal with on-site
assessment5 showed that zero energy was techni- renewables. (As the number of stories increases, the
cally feasible with the use of on-site renewables. More energy intensity relative to the area of the roof increases,
recently, California adopted zero energy targets for 50% making it harder to meet the on-site renewable energy
of the floor area of existing state-owned buildings by requirement with a PV system on the building.)
2025 and for all new or renovated state buildings begin- As a submarket, the 232,000 U.S. K–12 schools account
ning design after 2025.6 California has also set a target for 7.7% of commercial building energy consumption.11
of making all new commercial buildings zero energy by This is substantial, given that most school buildings have
2030.7 Several other states are thinking along the same very similar activities and functions. In contrast, the
lines and have established task forces that are working total office building energy use is approximately three
on the issue. Although still a very small portion of the times that of schools in the United States, but office
market, approximately 400 potential zero energy build- building sizes and shapes vary widely and the range of
ings have been identified in the United States and the their uses is broader.
number is growing rapidly.8 Zero energy buildings are still relatively rare, but—
Much has been written about what zero energy build- given that K–12 schools touch the lives of many more
ings are, and the idea of a measurable, achievable zero people than most buildings—successful zero energy
energy goal is taking hold in the marketplace.9,10 The schools can help familiarize the general public with the
discussion has now shifted from “what” to “how.” As concept and benefits of zero energy. Zero energy is also
they did when they developed other AEDGs, a steering easy to explain and understand, making it attractive as a
committee made up of each participating organization portal to teaching schoolchildren and community mem-
(ASHRAE, USGBC, AIA, and IES) created a scope for the bers about the broader consequences of energy use.
new AEDG series that focused on primary and second-
ary schools. DOE serves an ex-officio member because A Unique Approach
it provides much of the funding to develop the AEDGs as Zero energy buildings use an absolute energy use
well as directing the national labs to assist with analysis. intensity (EUI) target rather than comparing energy
The steering committee then formed a special proj- savings with a predetermined base case such as a
ect committee (ASHRAE SP-139) made up of technical code-compliant building. Unlike the 30% and 50%
experts representing the school sector, HVAC, envelope, AEDG series, the K–12 ZE AEDG provides no reference
architecture, and lighting, with a strong emphasis on building or comparison. It does, however, provide
choosing members who had experience delivering and clear guidance on how to achieve an absolute energy



consumption target. FIGURE 1 Climate zone map for U.S. states and counties. Source: ASHRAE Standard 169, Normative Appendix B.
To clarify what a zero Dry (B) Moist (A)
energy building is, DOE Marine (C)
published a common
definition in 2015: “An
energy-efficient build-
ing where, on a source
energy basis, the actual
annual delivered
energy is less than or
equal to the on-site
renewable exported
energy.”12 Note that this
definition is not lim-
ited to buildings; it can
also apply to campuses,
communities, portfo-
lios, etc.
The DOE definition
uses source energy as
the metric measured
at the site. The K–12 ZE
AEDG provides targets
to meet that definition.
A few characteristics of zero energy building design and strategies. Maintaining the theme of using energy
include: modeling to help drive decisions, NREL completed a
• Increased emphasis on early stage energy modeling feasibility study in 2016 showing that zero energy K–12
(predictive modeling); schools could be designed and built successfully in dif-
• Prioritization on reducing the energy consumption ferent climate zones.13
of the building; The recommendations in the K–12 ZE AEDG meet the
• Integration of renewables at a scale appropriate to zero energy requirements in the eight U.S. ASHRAE cli-
the building’s energy consumption; mate zones (1–8) and the three corresponding subzones.
• Innovative procurement processes and owner en- This has changed slightly from the 50% design guides in
gagement; and that Standard 169-201314 was used with updated climatic
• Verification that the goal is met based on actual data. In addition, Climate Zone 0 was added. In total, 19
operations. climate zones were analyzed with the U.S. zones shown
The last characteristic shifts the discussion from sav- in Figure 1. Note that Standard 169 has world-wide infor-
ings compared with a baseline as a design exercise to mation including maps and city tables.
actual measured data that can prove the energy target The audience for this K–12 ZE AEDG is primarily
has been met. This is the real objective—show that zero design teams looking for guidance on processes and
energy buildings perform according to their design strategies to achieve a zero energy school design. In
intent and that the intent is to reduce the energy and addition, there is useful information for school admin-
environmental impact of the building. istrators, school boards, facility managers, and anyone
One of the major barriers to the widespread accep- who procures school buildings. It is also anticipated
tance of zero energy buildings is that design teams and that the K–12 ZE AEDG will provide inspiration to stu-
contractors are not confident that zero energy can be dents and those looking to push the limits of school
achieved at a reasonable cost using today’s technologies energy performance.



Establishing Energy Targets

To establish reasonable energy targets for achieving Stage
ZE performance in all U.S. climate zones, two pro-
totypical school models based on DOE prototypical Corridor Gym
models (which were also used for the 50% design guide
for K-12 schools)—an 82,500 ft2 (7665 m2) elementary Bathrooms Resource Rooms Cafeteria
school (two stories) and a 227,700 ft2 (21 154 m2) sec- Mech Kitchen
ondary school (three stories)—were developed and
analyzed using hourly building simulations. A typical
elementary school layout is shown in Figure 2.
The buildings were modified by the project com- Mechanical Main Entrance
mittee to reflect current design trends. For example,
increasing the number of stories makes the model Media
more relevant to urban and suburban in-fill buildings
and replacement schools. However, this created a chal-
lenge of having enough roof area to accommodate the
FIGURE 2 Example baseline building for an elementary school.
PV system to balance the energy needs of the building.
One set of hourly simulations was run for each proto- could be generated by a PV system on the building’s roof.
type in each climate zone using the recommendations These EUIs are intended not as a prescriptive require-
in the K–12 ZE AEDG. All materials and equipment used ment, but as a starting point of minimum performance
in the simulations are commercially available from two that could be cost-effectively attained. Further optimiza-
or more manufacturers. The simulation results led to tion through building simulation and integrated design
target EUIs for each climate zone, and each was verified is recommended to reach the lowest possible EUI for the
not to exceed the amount of renewable solar energy that specific conditions of a particular project.

The previous 30% and 50% design guides documented IES/USGBC Standard 189.1-2014, which are the current
a prescriptive path to achieving the energy goal;15 that is, standards for energy efficiency in commercial buildings.
if you followed the list of recommendations, you would The steering committee provided specific scope to the
achieve the goal. The solutions were pre-computed and project committee concerning space types. The K–12 ZE
recommendations were put into tables. AEDG includes administrative and office areas, class-
The K–12 ZE AEDG takes an energy-performance- rooms, hallways, restrooms, gymnasia, locker rooms with
based approach that considers whole-building energy showers, assembly spaces, libraries, and dining and food
use. Energy targets are presented and a series of how-to preparation areas. The K–12 ZE AEDG does not cover atyp-
tips outline methods and techniques to achieve these ical spaces, such as indoor swimming pools, laboratories,
energy targets. These strategies are based on modeling career and technical education, and other spaces with
as well as expert opinions from project committee mem- higher energy loads and ventilation requirements. The
bers. In addition, case studies provide examples of com- K–12 ZE AEDG also does not cover modular classrooms,
pleted school buildings operating near the target EUIs specialty laboratories, maintenance areas, domestic water
and detail the strategies used to achieve the targets. well pumping, or sewage disposal. Although only elemen-
Most of the guidance is practical and can be read- tary and high schools were modeled, middle schools are
ily applied to school designs. The project committee typically a combination of the two.
focused on providing simple, easy-to-follow guidance
that would result in a large number of zero energy For Owners, It Starts With Measurable Goals
schools. The recommendations and strategies all meet The first part of the K–12 ZE AEDG targets school
or exceed ASHRAE/IES Standard 90.1-2016 and ASHRAE/ administrators, school boards, and other district staff


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and discusses how high performance learning environ- achievable today in any climate zone within a conven-
ments can use a zero energy school building as a catalyst. tional school budget. It also discusses the importance
Chapter 1 covers the fiscal aspects of building a school and of communicating that clearly to multiple stakeholder
the environmental aspects of zero energy. It makes it clear groups in terms they can understand. The architects and
that zero energy schools are attainable within a standard other team members can use their expertise and experi-
school budget and discusses the advantages of setting an ence to engage the community and assure them that the
energy goal as an absolute number rather than compar- pathway to zero is attainable. Because the design team
ing performance against a code or standard. is pivotal in achieving project goals, the chapter also
Measurable goals are key to the success of any zero describes the characteristics of a successful design team
energy building, particularly setting an energy use to help owners choose wisely.
goal. Setting and achieving an energy use goal means
the building is ready for a renewable energy future— People, Process, Procurement
whether the renewable energy is included during con- With the foundation of zero energy set, Chapter 3 pres-
struction or not. Such a building is “zero energy ready.” ents the keys to success. When owners, design/construc-
The chapter points out that zero energy is an operational tion team members, teachers, school administrators,
as well as a design goal, and looks at actual measured data operations and maintenance staff, and other stakehold-
after the building has operated for at least 12 months. ers embrace the zero energy concept and—especially—a
Meeting a measurable energy goal demonstrates success, measurable energy consumption goal, the chances of
and that success can be shared with the design team, success increase dramatically.
school administration, teachers, and students. A major Zero energy “champions” may or may not be the same
advantage of building a zero energy school—as opposed to people during different stages of a project. For that rea-
a less public zero energy building—is that the community son, a broad range of stakeholders should be included
shares in the success of the energy achievement. in the process from the outset. For example, includ-
Chapter 1 also discusses that the goal must be persis- ing operations and maintenance staff or kitchen and
tent—the first year of performance is good, but the real food service personnel during planning and design can
proof is year-over-year performance. For that reason, ensure that the building operates as it’s designed.
the owner needs to select a design team that represents Chapter 3 provides high-level strategies as a “loading
its interests. Often, this team comprises administrators, order” or pathway to achieving zero in a logical design
teachers, security personnel, operations and mainte- progression. The chapter also offers examples of ways
nance staff and capital construction professionals. Team to calculate whether a building is zero energy and dis-
members must be consulted and included and must cusses how to verify the end result. In addition, it covers
agree on the goals from the beginning of the process. commissioning as a process that begins in design and
continues through occupancy.
Zero Energy Schools Are Exemplary Schools The focus for the owner is to hire a design team com-
Chapter 2 of the K–12 ZE AEDG identifies the principles mitted to the goal and willing to work creatively and
fundamental to creating a zero energy school. For exam- collaboratively throughout the process to find the best
ple, it is important to ensure good indoor environmental solutions for meeting the energy target and optimizing
quality in any building, and a zero energy school is no the learning environment. Toward that end, this chapter
exception. discusses procurement strategies and provides guidance
The functionality of the school as a learning environ- so that the design team can respond effectively to the
ment is critical, so this chapter discusses the integration owner’s needs.
of the curriculum with building elements. For example, Procurement strategies are important to achieving a
engaging students in data collection through energy zero energy goal.16 They provide a framework for deci-
dashboards can be educational, but can also be struc- sion making as well as clear direction and motivation to
tured such that it supports the energy performance of guide design teams and construction contractors. Many
the building. school districts have established procurement policies,
The chapter builds confidence that zero energy is and this chapter can help them incorporate energy goals


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into those policies or may even prompt them to adapt TABLE 1 Target energy use intensity.
existing policies so that they support the routine deliv- SITE ENERGY SOURCE ENERGY
Some owners know from the outset that they want a ZONE SCHOOL EUI SCHOOL EUI SCHOOL EUI SCHOOL EUI
zero energy building and create procurement methods
0A 22.5 22.9 69.1 70.5
geared to selecting an appropriate design team. In other
projects, it’s the design team that champions zero energy 0B 23.1 23.2 71.4 71.6
by promising to deliver a zero energy building without 1A 21.3 21.1 65.5 65.0
increasing the budget, giving that team a significant 1B 21.7 21.6 66.6 66.6
competitive advantage. 2A 20.9 21.3 63.8 65.1
Even when they’re committed to the zero energy 2B 19.6 19.9 59.7 60.8
concept, many owners and design teams need guid- 3A 18.8 19.1 56.7 57.7
ance setting energy targets. To develop that guidance, 3B 19.0 19.4 57.3 58.8
NREL researchers started with baseline buildings and
3C 17.5 17.6 52.6 52.8
applied a number of strategies to a computer model. The
4A 18.8 18.9 56.3 56.7
researchers also established the on-site solar allowance
4B 18.4 18.5 55.1 55.5
or the expected amount of sun for each climate zone.
They then compared models across climate zones for 4C 17.5 17.6 51.9 52.3

consistency, and established maximum EUI targets for a 5A 19.2 19.1 57.1 56.9
school to be zero energy ready. Those targets are shown 5B 18.7 19.0 55.6 56.6
in Table 1. As a tangible outcome of this work, energy 5C 17.4 17.6 49.7 52.3
models will be available in Spring 2018 at www.ashrae. 6A 21.1 20.6 62.8 61.2
org/freeaedg for design teams to use as a starting point 6B 19.5 19.5 57.9 57.9
for their own analyses. 7 22.3 21.5 66.2 63.7
8 25.2 23.8 71.1 70.7
Model Early and Often
Chapter 4 discusses energy simulation methods and school operating at zero energy throughout its lifetime.
how building simulation can be a valuable decision-mak-
ing tool as the design team frames and refines the design. Getting the Details Right
Energy models are often used only for code compliance or Chapter 5 contains the bulk of the how-to guidance,
to provide an energy rating for a certification program. broken into specialty areas—building and site plan-
In fact, they are not only effective design tools, but ning, envelope, daylighting, electric lighting, plug loads,
can also help ensure that the building operates at zero kitchens and food service, water heating, HVAC, and
energy from year to year. Therefore, the building should renewable generation. Each section contains multiple
be modeled throughout design, construction, commis- tips that move the design incrementally toward the zero
sioning, and operations to evaluate decisions and mea- energy goal.
sure progress. The key is keeping the building model Cross references are provided where strategies overlap
up-to-date with the as-built design (and condition) of and rely on another strategy. The cautions and best prac-
the school. tices provided throughout the chapter are based on the
Modeling first considers climate, building mass- practical experiences of project committee members.
ing, energy, daylighting, and lighting. It should then As the many educational, fiscal, and environmental
be used to help select and size mechanical systems. benefits of zero energy schools become better under-
Models can also help evaluate acoustics, air movement, stood, these innovative buildings will become more
heat and moisture migration, and thermal comfort. common. The purpose of the K–12 ZE AEDG—the most
The investment in modeling can effectively make comprehensive source of practical wisdom for design-
design decisions, creating a better school environment ing, building, and operating a zero energy school cur-
that hits its energy targets as well as helping to keep the rently available—is to speed that shift.


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References 8. NBI. 2016. “2016 List of Zero Net Energy Buildings.” New Buildings
1. Colliver, D.G., Jarnagin, R.E. 2005. “Advanced energy design Institute.
guide for small office buildings: saving 30% over standard 90.1- GTZ_2016_List.pdf.
1999.” ASHRAE Journal (3). 9. Liu, B., et al. 2017. “A conversation on zero net energy buildings.”
2. Pless, S., P. Torcellini, J. Peterson. 2004. “Oberlin College ASHRAE Journal 59(6):38–49.
Lewis Center for Environmental Studies: A Low-Energy Academic 10. Torcellini, P., S. Pless, M. Deru, D. Crawley. 2006. “Zero Energy
Building.” World Renewable Energy Congress VIII and Expo. www. Buildings: A Critical Look at the Definition.” ACEEE Summer Study on Energy Efficiency in Buildings.
3. Fu, R., et al. 2017. “U.S. Solar Photovoltaic System Cost Bench- fy06osti/39833.pdf.
mark: Q1 2017.” National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) 11. EIA. 2012. Commercial Buildings Energy Consumption Sur-
Technical Report NREL/TP-6A20-68925. vey. Table PBA3-2012.
fy17osti/68925.pdf. data/2012/c&e/cfm/pba3.php.
4. Feldman, D., et al. 2012. “Photovoltaic (PV) Pricing Trends: 12. DOE. 2015. “A Common Definition for Zero Energy Buildings.”
Historical, Recent, and Near-Term Projections.” U.S. Department U.S. Department of Energy.
of Energy Technical Report DOE/GO-102012-3839. resource/1938.
docs/fy13osti/56776.pdf. 13. Bonnema, E., D. Goldwasser, P. Torcellini, S. Pless, D. Studer.
5. Griffith, B., et al. 2007. “Assessment of the Technical Potential 2016. “Technical Feasibility Study for Zero Energy K–12 Schools.”
for Achieving Net Zero-Energy Buildings in the Commercial Sector.” National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) Technical Report
National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) Technical Report NREL/TP-5500-67233.
NREL/TP-550-41957. 14. ASHRAE Standard 169-2013, Climatic Data for Building Design
6. SAM. 2017. “Energy and Sustainability: Zero Net Energy for Standards.
New and Existing State Buildings.” [California] State Administrative 15. Bonnema, E., et al. 2012. “50% Advanced Energy Design
Manual. Guides.” ACEEE Summer Study on Energy Efficiency in Buildings.
sam_master_file/chap1800/1815.31.pdf. 16. Pless, S., et al. 2013. “How-To Guide for Energy-Performance-
7. CPUC. 2011. “California Energy Efficiency Strategic Plan [up- Based Procurement.” National Renewable Energy Laboratory
date].” California Public Utilities Commission. (NREL) Report Number TPP-5500-56705. https://buildingdata.


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What You Need to Know

New Federal Regulations

For Ceiling Fans

In January 2017, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) finalized its first efficiency
performance standards for ceiling fans,1 which included minimum efficiency require-
ments for large-diameter ceiling fans. The DOE is covering commercial and industrial
fans and blowers in a separate rulemaking that has yet to be finalized.2
Ratings using the DOE test procedure allow compari- an update with respect to DOE’s previous test proce-
sons of products based on electric input power and dure. Effective June 15, 2018, the DOE test method will
airflow. Fan companies that fail to use the prescribed be used for qualification for ENERGY STAR certification.
DOE test procedure for making representations of ceil- For large-diameter (greater than 7 ft [2.1 m]) ceil-
ing fan performance would be subject to fines.3 Because ing fans, performance testing is based on a standard
the DOE performance metric is not based on a specific published by Air Movement and Control Association
airflow point, some additional effort on the part of the (AMCA) International: ANSI/AMCA Standard 230-15,
designer may be required to evaluate fan performance Laboratory Methods of Testing Air Circulating Fans for Rating and
equitably at a specific airflow point. Certification. AMCA 230 initially was published in 1999;6
Here, then, are four things to know about the DOE’s the most recent revision, published in 2015,7 was dis-
regulation of ceiling fans that will help to ensure a suc- ournal article.8
cussed in detail in a previous ASHRAE Journal
cessful and efficient ceiling fan selection. As of July 2017, all temporary testing extensions
1. The Test Methods Are Based on Well-Known In- granted by the DOE are expired; thus, all ceiling-fan
dustry Standards manufacturers now are required to use the DOE test-
The DOE test methods for ceiling fans are defined in ing methods as the basis of any published performance
the Code of Federal Regulations (CFR).4 data, per DOE’s representation requirements at 10 CFR
For small-diameter (7 ft [2.1 m] or less) ceiling fans, 429.32.3
performance testing is based on a modified version of 2. Fan Manufacturers’ Performance Data Should Not
ENERGY STAR® Testing Facility Guidance Manual: The Solid Change Dramatically.
State Test Method for ENERGY STAR Qualified Ceiling Fans,5 Although the DOE regulations differ slightly from
which has been in use for testing residential ceiling fans AMCA 230-15, airflow is calculated according to
since 2002. DOE’s final rule incorporates some aspects AMCA 230-15, and published performance data
from version 1.2 of the guidance manual, but is formally should not vary dramatically from those obtained
Christian Taber is principal engineer, Codes and Standards, at Big Ass Solutions, manufacturer of HVLS fans. Michael Ivanovich is senior director, Industry Relations, at Air Movement
and Control Association (AMCA) International, a not-for-profit manufacturers association.



Status of Draft Standards TABLE 1 Impact of test method on a circulator fan’s maximum-speed perfor-
mance data.
At press time, AMCA 208 had been approved by AMCA TEST METHOD POWER THRUST AIRFLOW
and was undergoing ANSI accreditation. Publication was (WATTS) (POUNDS FORCE) (CFM)
expected in January 2018. For more information about AMCA 230-99 750 36.5 113,664
AMCA 208, see the peer-reviewed technical papers at
AMCA 230-07 750 37.0 N/A
AMCA 230-12 750 37.0 80,897
ASHRAE Standard Project Committee 216 anticipated
AMCA 230-15 750 37.0 80,365
ASHRAE Standard 216P would be approved for its first
public review in late 2017 or early 2018. DOE Regulations 2016/17 750 37.0 80,365

with AMCA 230-12. In the case of airflow calculated ∑ i ( Airflowi × OH i )

from thrust, it is worth noting the equation in AMCA DOE Efficiency (cfm/W)=
Wsb × OH sb + ∑ i (Wi × OH i )
230-99 inflates performance by incorrectly multiply-
ing by the square root of 2; if performance data are
determined using AMCA 230-99, updated published Large Diameter Fan DOE Efficiency =
airflow will decrease by approximately 30%. The Airflow20% × Hours20% + Airflow40%
erroneous airflow equation was removed for AMCA × Hours40% + ... + Airflow100% × Hours100%
230-07, and changes were made to the thrust equa-
tion to account for air density. A corrected version of W20% × Hours20% + W40% × Hours40% + ...
the airflow equation was added in AMCA 230-12. Table +W100% × Hours100% + Wsb × Hourssb
1 shows how maximum-speed performance data for where
the same fan tested under each version of AMCA 230 Airflowi = Airflow at speed i
would vary. OHi = Operating hours at speed i
3. Minimum-Efficiency Standards Go Into Effect in Wi = Power consumption at speed i
2020. OHsb = Operating hours in standby mode
The implementation of these new test methods is Wsb = Power consumption in standby mode
the first step in creating minimum energy-efficiency
requirements, also known as energy conservation Starting in 2020, the DOE will require all ceiling fans
standards. to meet or exceed the specified DOE efficiency levels,
Much like Integrated Part Load Value (IPLV) for chill- which are set based on fan diameter and product class.1
ers, the DOE efficiency metric (which is actually an 4. Efficiency vs. Efficacy—Why the DOE Metric Does
efficacy metric) for ceiling fans is based on a weighted- Not Tell You All You Need to Know.
average at multiple operating points, i. For large-diam- Say you want to transport 100 people 100 miles
eter fans, the DOE calculates efficiency using a weighted (161 km). You could select a moped, which has a high
average of data collected in standby mode and up to five fuel-efficacy rating at 100 mpg (42.5 km/L), or you could
speeds. The number of speeds to test is based on the select a transit bus, which gets about 3 mpg (1.28 km/L).
number of available speeds, as specified in Table 2 of the Because the moped can carry only one person, 100
DOE test method. For calculating a ceiling fan’s overall mopeds would have to be used, and the mopeds would
efficiency, the calculated efficiency at each tested speed use approximately 100 gallons (379 L) of fuel. The bus
will be equally apportioned active mode operating hours could take everyone in one trip, using 33 gallons (125 L)
(e.g., if five speeds are tested, each speed is given 20% of of fuel. In this case, despite its lower efficacy rating, the
the overall daily operating hours).4 The resulting metric bus would be the more energy-efficient choice.
essentially is the airflow delivered by a fan in a “typical” The fan affinity laws make the same general principle
day divided by the power consumed by the fan in a “typi- hold true for ceiling-fan efficacy and efficiency. For a given
cal” day. diameter, slowing down a fan reduces input power and
Equation 1: DOE efficiency (efficacy) metric for large- airflow, but input power is reduced more significantly than
diameter fans tested at five speeds airflow. Consequently, at lower speeds, a fan would have a



higher efficacy in terms of the DOE metric. This FIGURE 1 Impact of reduced maximum airflow on DOE efficiency.
makes slowing a fan the simplest way to achieve a 1,200
high efficacy at an equal or lower efficiency (Figure 150 cfm/W (DOE)
1,000 Fan 1 Fan 2
1). Instead of relying solely on the DOE metric, a
designer should determine the amount of airflow 800

Power (W)
a fan needs to move or the size of the area that 207 cfm/W (DOE)
needs to be covered with elevated air speed and 400
then compare fan-energy performance for fans
that meet the needs of the application.
Fan 1 and Fan 2 are alike physically; however, 0
0 20,000 40,000 60,000 80,000 100,000
Fan 2 has been programmed to operate at a 20% Airflow (cfm)
lower maximum speed. The DOE efficiency
increases by 57 cfm/W (38%) solely because of
TABLE 2 Fan-efficiency metrics for three large-diameter ceiling fans.
the reduction in maximum airflow, while the
fans’ input power-to-output air power efficien- FAN 1 FAN 2 FAN 3

cies at any common airflow point are identical. FAN SPEED AIRFLOW POWER AIRFLOW POWER AIRFLOW POWER
100% 100,000 1000 80,000 550 80,000 733
Beyond DOE Efficiency
80% 80,000 550 64,000 297 64,000 396
Looking forward, two standards that may have
60% 60,000 250 48,000 144 48,000 192
a dramatic impact on ceiling fans are being
40% 40,000 100 32,000 74 32,000 97
developed: AMCA Standard 208-2017, Calculation
of the Fan Energy Index,9 and ASHRAE Standard 20% 20,000 50 16,000 45 16,000 59
216P, Methods of Test for Determining Application Data Standby – 10 – 10 – 10
of Overhead Circulator Fans. 10 DOE Effi ciency 150 207 157
AMCA 208 is a calculation standard establish- FEI at Maximum Speed 1.31 1.43 1.07
ing a new metric: fan energy index (FEI), the FEI at 80,000 cfm 1.43 1.43 1.07
ratio of the electric input power of a reference fan
to the electric input power of a selected fan. In the previous example. Fan 3 is similar in design to Fan 1,
effect, FEI rates a circulator fan according to how but operates at the same lower maximum speed as Fan 2
much power is used to achieve a specified airflow rate and has a lower-efficiency motor. As a result, when com-
and pressure. By accounting for the amount of work being pared to Fan 1, Fan 3 provides 20% less airflow at 100%
done by a fan—and the utility provided to the user of the of maximum speed and, for a given airflow, consumes
product—FEI potentially is more complete than the DOE approximately 33% more power. Because of the reduced
metric because it removes the penalty imposed on high- maximum speed, the DOE efficiency of Fan 3 is greater
efficiency fans that achieve relatively high airflow rates. At than that of Fan 1. Because of the lower-efficiency motor
the same time, unlike the DOE metric, FEI penalizes low- and same operating speeds, the DOE efficiency of Fan
airflow fans that do not create airflow efficiently. 3 is less than that of Fan 2. On the other hand, the FEI
For a specified airflow rate, FEI is calculated using for Fan 1 is significantly higher than that for Fan 3 and
Equations 2 and 3, which are simplifications of the reflects the use of a better motor. Fans 1 and 2 have the
equations provided in AMCA 208. same FEI at the same airflow because they essentially are
Actual Fan System Efficiency the same fan. The impending publication of AMCA 208
Baseline Fan System Efficiency may offer the DOE a better means of regulating ceiling
Baseline Fan Electrical Input Power fans and encourage increased efficiency at all airflow
FEI = rates and diameters in future rulemaking.
Actual Fan Electrical Input Power
Note that in Table 2 the author proposes constants P0, Q 0,
Table 2 shows AMCA 230-15 performance data, DOE and 0 different than the ones in AMCA 208 for calculat-
efficiency, and FEI for three fans. Fans 1 and 2 are from ing the baseline fan electrical input power. The constants



used to calculate the FEI values in Table 2 were

FIGURE 2 Fan performance data for Fan 1, Fan 2 and Fan 3 from Table 2.
derived from the performance ratings of 170
large-diameter fans tested to AMCA 230-15. 1,200 2.5
The constants in AMCA 208 were derived 1,000 2.0
from data for fan types other than large- 800

Fan Energy Index

Power (W)
diameter ceiling fans. 600
Figure 2 shows airflow, power, and FEI at the 1.0
five operating points required by AMCA 230-15
200 0.5
for all three fans. The power-vs.-airflow curve
shows Fans 1 and 2 use less power at a given 0
0 20,000 40,000 60,000 80,000
airflow than Fan 3, while the FEI values show Airflow (cfm)
Fans 1 and 2 have the same efficiency at a given
Fan 1 Power Fan 2 Power Fan 3 Power
airflow as and are more efficient than Fan 3.
Fan 1 FEI Fan 2 FEI Fan 3 FEI
ASHRAE Standard 216P, Methods of Test for
Determining Application Data of Overhead Circulator
Fans, will provide a standard test method for measuring large-diameter fans aggregates performance at the maxi-
the occupant-level air speed of overhead circulation fans. mum and part-load airflow settings inherent to the fan. For
The data collected using Standard 216P will complement comparing performance of fans at a given airflow point,
power and airflow data from AMCA 230-15. Occupant-level designers may have to look beyond the DOE metric. Soon,
air speed will be used to demonstrate compliance with the in addition to data determined using the DOE test method,
thermal-comfort requirements of ANSI/ASHRAE Standard engineers will be able to use AMCA 208 to determine FEI
55-2017, Thermal Environmental Conditions for Human Occupancy, 11 and have applications data from ASHRAE Standard 216P
and enable designers to optimize low-energy designs that testing to guide ceiling-fan selection and application.
use the cooling effect of air movement to maintain comfort.
Summary 1. DOE. 2017. “Energy conservation program: energy conserva-
tion standards for ceiling fans: Final Rule.” Federal Register 82:6826.
Federally mandated test methods for small- and large- U.S. Department of Energy.
diameter ceiling fans are now in place. The small-diam- documents/2017/01/19.
eter test method is based on the well-known ENERGY 2. DOE. 2017. “Commercial and Industrial Fans and Blowers.” U.S.
Department of Energy.
STAR Testing Facility Guidance Manual: The Solid State Test pliance_standards/standards.aspx?productid=51&action=viewlive.
Method for ENERGY STAR Qualified Ceiling Fans, with modi- 3. DOE. 2016. “Civil Penalties for Energy Conservation Stan-
fications, while the large-diameter test method is based dards Program Violations—Policy Statement.”
on the 2015 version of AMCA 230. program-violations-policy-statement.
Although the DOE regulations vary slightly from the 4. Office of Federal Register. 2017. “Uniform Test Method for Mea-
2015 version of AMCA 230, published performance data suring the Energy Consumption of Ceiling Fans, 10 CFR Appendix
U to Subpart B of Part 430.”
determined using the DOE test procedure should not dif- 5. EPA. 2002. “ENERGY STAR® Testing Facility Guidance Manual:
fer dramatically from those determined using the 2012 Building a Testing Facility and Performing the Solid State Test
version of AMCA 230. However, there will be significant Method for ENERGY STAR Qualified Ceiling Fans, Version 1.1.” U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency.
differences compared with fan-rating data calculated 6. ANSI/AMCA Standard 230-99, Laboratory Methods of Testing Air
using the 1999 version of AMCA 230. The DOE regulations Circulating Fans for Rating and Certification.
require that manufacturers with published ratings for 7. ANSI/AMCA Standard 230-15, Laboratory Methods of Testing Air
Circulating Fans for Rating and Certification.
ceiling fan performance that are not consistent with the
8. Taber, C. 2015. “Circulator fan performance testing standards:
DOE test method be re-tested to the DOE test method to The thrust of ANSI/AMCA Standard 230-15.” ASHRAE Journal 57(9).
make public representations of ceiling fan performance. 9. AMCA Standard 208-2017, Calculation of the Fan Energy Index.
Compliance with the DOE energy conservation standards 10. ASHRAE Standard 216P, Methods of Test for Determining Application
Data of Overhead Circulator Fans.
for ceiling fans will become mandatory in 2020. 11. ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 55-2017, Thermal Environmental Condi-
Designers should be aware that the DOE metric for tions for Human Occupancy.


The 29th International Exhibition for Refrigeration,
Air-conditioning, Heating and Ventilation,
Frozen Food Processing, Packaging and Storage

April 9-11, 2018

New China International Exhibition Center, Beijing

Organizers Show Management

Hotline: Tel: +86-10-58565888-629/625
400-680-3553 Fax: +86-10-58566000
E-mail: China Refrigeration Expo. WeChat

Stephen W. Duda

Air-Handling Units

vs. Draw-Through

The most common arrangement of commercial air-handling unit components in

general building construction, in order of airflow, is a return/outdoor air mixing
section, a filter bank, a preheat coil (if needed), a humidifier (if needed), an access
section, a cooling coil, and a supply air fan or fans. Often, this is preceded, in order
of airflow, by a return fan(s) and economizer section. Indeed, most of the diagrams
found in Chapter 4 of the 2016 ASHRAE Handbook—HVAC Systems and Equipment1 depict
the supply air fan downstream of the cooling coil as just described. But I want to use
this column to explore that conventional order and, in particular, whether to position
the supply fan in the blow-through or draw-through position.
In a draw-through air-handling unit, the supply fan the coil, a more even velocity profile across the entire
is positioned downstream of the cooling coil; whereas a cooling coil is achieved.
blow-through air-handling unit positions the supply fan The primary conventional caution when specifying a
upstream of the cooling coil, as depicted in Figure 1.2 draw-through arrangement is that fan heat is added to
The age-old argument in favor of draw-through the supply air temperature, necessitating an equivalent
is that it offers a more even airflow profile as air is depression of the cooling coil leaving air temperature to
induced across the cooling coil; whereas a conven- account for it. Let’s look at that fan heat factor in more
tional housed centrifugal fan has a rather direct dis- detail.
charge blast pattern that makes the blow-through
arrangement problematic. Unless the laying length Fan Heat
from centrifugal fan outlet to the cooling coil face is First, the issue of fan heat: Early in my career, I may
exceptionally long, or an energy-wasting diffusion have said “fan heat is fan heat” and that it really doesn’t
plate is added, too much air will be forced through the matter where it occurs as long as one accounts for it.
center of the cooling coil and not enough through the After all, the fan is still within the building in either
outer perimeter, leading to possible moisture carry- case, so at first glance the fan heat wouldn’t appear
over from the center section and possible loss of capac- to impact the overall building energy use either way.
ity via underutilization of the outer portions of the coil. Stephen W. Duda, P.E., is senior mechanical engineer at Ross & Baruzzini, Inc. in
When air is induced by a fan positioned downstream of St. Louis.



However, there actually is an energy consumption dif- FIGURE 1 Typical air-handling unit configuration.
ference. If using blow-through, fan heat raises the tem-
Filter Cooling Coil
perature of air before it enters the cooling coil, and that
added heat is entirely sensible. If using draw-through C
Supply Air
and you depress the cooling coil’s leaving air tempera- Outdoor Air
ture an equivalent amount to account for fan heat, you
“accidentally” add additional latent load to the system Supply Air Fan
Return Air
since depressing the coil leaving temperature in an Draw-Through Unit
already saturated condition strips additional moisture
from the airstream. (The building will be maintained at Filter Cooling Coil
a slightly lower indoor humidity level as a result.) C
Said another way, let’s say you or your favorite cooling Supply Air
Outdoor Air
load calculation program have determined that air needs C
to discharge from the diffuser into the space at 55°F (13°C) Supply Air Fan
to provide desired space temperature and humidity Return Air Blow-Through Unit
control. Cooling a given amount of 82°F (28°C) air with a
dew point of 62°F (17°C) down to 55°F (13°C) saturated is
not the same as cooling the same air from 80°F (27°C) air and 76°F (24°C) wet bulb.
at 62°F (17°C) dew point down to 53°F (12°C) saturated. • According to the ASHRAE Handbook,4 temperature
The sensible load is essentially the same either way, but rise across the fan can be estimated by Equation 1.
the latent load differs. The difference is large enough to
∆PC p
warrant consideration, as in this age we are trying to save ∆T = (1)
even small amounts of energy anywhere we can. ρc p J η
A caveat is needed here. If the system is to be located where
in an exceptionally dry climate where air crossing a ∆T = temperature rise across fan, °F
cooling coil never reaches saturation, this discussion is ∆P = pressure rise across fan, in. of water
not applicable. But in any of the “A” Climate Zones3 (2A, Cp = conversion factor = 5.193 lbf /ft2·in. of water
3A, 4A, 5A, etc.) in the eastern two-thirds of the United ρ = density, lbm/ft3
States, this discussion most certainly is applicable cp = specific heat = 0.24 Btu/lbm·°F
because moisture removal is a frequent if not constant J = mechanical equivalent of heat = 778.2 ft·lbf /Btu
occurrence throughout the summer. η = efficiency, decimal

Fan Heat Example Using the example data given above, temperature rise
Let’s take a detailed look at a specific air-handling unit across the fan is therefore found to be 2.8°F (1.6°C).
cooling selection for the same conditions but with the Draw-Through: With the supply fan downstream
fan location varied from draw-through to blow-through. of the cooling coil, all fan heat is modeled as reheat,
• Total Airflow = 25,000 cfm (11 800 L/s) necessitating a depression in the coil leaving tempera-
• Outdoor Airflow = 5,000 cfm (2400 L/s) ture to meet the desired room supply air temperature
• Total Static Pressure = 5 in. w.c. (1.2 kPa) of 55°F (13°C).* Fan heat in this case results in a warm-
• Net Combined Fan/Motor Efficiency = 65% ing of the air by 2.8°F (1.6°C), meaning our air must
• Desired Room Supply Air Temperature = 55°F (13°C) leave the cooling coil at 52.2°F (11.2°C). The blend of
• Return Air Temperature = 76°F (24°C) outdoor air with return air yields a coil entering condi-
• Return Air Relative Humidity = 60% tion of 79.8°F (26.6°C) dry bulb and 68.4°F (20.2°C)
• Outdoor Air Temperature = 95°F (35°C) dry bulb wet bulb. Using either your favorite psychrometric

*You may also want to depress the AHU leaving air temperature to account for other factors such as downstream duct heat gain due to
imperfect insulation, but that is the same situation regardless of whether draw-through or blow-through is applied. I have ignored it in this
column since I am only interested in a comparison of the factors that differ.


software calculation program or the manual method nearly saturated air to cross over the saturation curve
outlined in the ASHRAE Handbook,5 cooling 25,000 cfm and thereby drop a little liquid water on its way through.
(11 800 L/s) of 79.8°F/68.4°F (26.6°C/20.2°C) air down Even though slight, the accumulation of liquid moisture
to 52.2°F (11.2°C) saturated requires 756,000 Btu/h (221 builds over time. Since the passing air is at saturation,
kW) sensible heat removal and 1,285,000 Btu/h (376 no opportunity exists for drying or re-evaporation. So
kW) total heat removal. the filters get wet and stay wet.
Blow-Through: With the supply fan upstream of the Consider adding a second chilled water coil down-
cooling coil, the fan heat is modeled as an immediate stream of the primary chilled water coil, and pipe it
sensible increase in the entering air temperature. Fan using the outlet chilled water from the first coil. This
heat again in this case results in a warming of the air by provides just enough reheat to keep the filters dry. For
2.8°F (1.6°C), meaning our mixed air is warmer enter- example, say you are using 42°F (5.5°C) entering water
ing the cooling coil. The blend of outdoor air with return and 58°F (14.4°C) leaving water in a chilled water coil
air yields a coil entering condition of 82.6°F (28.1°C) dry to produce 53°F (11.7°C) supply air. And being a good
bulb and 69.3°F (20.7°C) wet bulb. Cooling 25,000 cfm engineer, you pipe the cooling coil in counterflow to the
(11 800 L/s) of 82.6°F/69.3°F (28.1°C/20.7°C) air down to direction of airflow. Now, piping the 58°F (14.4°C) leav-
55°F (13°C) saturated requires 756,000 Btu/h (221 kW) ing water immediately into the inlet connection of the
sensible heat removal and 1,120,000 Btu/h (328 kW) total second chilled water coil makes that second coil a reheat
heat removal. While sensible heat removal is the same coil (58°F [14.4°C] water versus 53°F air [11.7°C]), which
either way, the difference in latent (and therefore, total) will heat the supply air just a degree or so—enough to
heat removal is significant. pull your supply air temperature away from the satura-
tion curve on a psychrometric chart and guard against
Final Filters in Hospitals moisture condensing in the filter bank. At the same
Another consideration when choosing blow-through time, you “precool” the chilled water in the second coil
or draw-through occurs specifically in hospitals. slightly, so the net energy impact at the chiller is essen-
Engineers who routinely design air-handling systems tially neutral. You do, however, pay an energy penalty
for hospitals and other health-care facilities know that for the air pressure drop across the second cooling coil
many hospital codes and standards (for example, ANSI/ and a water pressure drop through the second chilled
ASHRAE/ASHE Standard 170-2013, Ventilation of Health water coil, so this is not ideal.
Care Facilities6) require a filter bank downstream of fans Another idea is to place the supply air fan between the
and wet cooling coils. The result is a filter bank in the cooling coil and the final filter bank, so fan heat becomes
blow-through position by necessity. This leads to the sensible reheat for the supply air in an effort to keep the
conundrum of how to keep those filters from becoming final filters dry. This won’t work well with a conventional
wet, which could in turn lead to microbial growth on the housed centrifugal fan as we said earlier, because that
filters. Since the air generally leaves the cooling coil very fan has a direct blast discharge pattern that may stress,
near saturation, hospital plant operators sometimes find deform, or even blow out the center portion of the fil-
their final filters are wet even if there is no visible mois- ter bank while leaving the outer perimeter underused.
ture carryover from the cooling coil. But the advent of plenum fans and plenum fan arrays
Why? We know that warmer air is capable of hold- makes it possible to place the supply air fan between the
ing more water vapor than colder air. 55°F (13°C) air at cooling coil and the final filter bank, and this may be an
100% relative humidity and 75°F (24°C) at 50% relative application where draw-through fan positioning has an
humidity both contain essentially the same amount of important benefit: enough reheat to keep the filters dry.
water vapor in absolute terms. A similar but less dra-
matic relationship exists between ambient air pressure Additional Considerations
and air’s ability to carry water vapor. Since final filters As discussed above, placing the fan(s) in a blow-through
in a hospital are usually selected for a rather high MERV position often results in air leaving the cooling coil very
rating with higher pressure losses, the simple decrease near saturation, without the “benefit” of fan-provided
in absolute air pressure across a filter bank is enough for reheat. One must be concerned that liquid condensation


ANSI/ASHRAE/ASHE Standard 170-2017—
Ventilation of Healthcare Facilities
Standard 170-2017 outlines key ventilation requirements that provide environmental control for
comfort, asepsis and odor in health care facilities.

This 2017 revision includes a number of significant improvements to the 2013 edition, including
a reformat into three sections to facilitate coordination between the standard and Facility
Guidelines Institute (FGI) documents.

Use alongside HVAC Design Manual for Hospitals and Clinics for comprehensive design
guidance on hospitals, nursing and outpatient facilities.

$79 ($67 ASHRAE Member)

Developed in partnership with FGI and American Society of Health Care Engineering (ASHE),
ASHRAE Standard-170 has been providing key guidance on ventilation requirements for health
care industry facilities since 2008.
could blow off the coil, landing on duct downstream of the arrays as a practical matter. On the other hand, use of
coil. This is especially problematic in lined ductwork. draw-through units allows more choices of fan types
Even if no liquid moisture carryover exists, supply air including the plenum fan and array options plus conven-
that is extremely near saturation is in danger of drop- tional housed centrifugal fans or even vaneaxial fans.
ping some condensation along its path. As discussed
previously, a decrease in absolute air pressure is some- Conclusions
times enough for very nearly saturated air to cross over For the majority of my career, I have specified air-han-
the saturation curve and drop a little liquid water. This dling units that are predominantly draw-through. For a
could occur in supply air on its transition from a coil significant part of that career, only conventional housed
or discharge plenum (typically at low velocity) into a centrifugal fans or vaneaxial fans were commonly applied
higher-velocity supply air main, or at high pressure- in air-handling equipment, and the direct discharge blast
loss fittings. The designer may even have to consider pattern of both of those fan types made blow-through
the possibility of condensation at diffusers. Those wor- configurations too impractical. Even after plenum fans
ries are mitigated in the draw-through arrangement as became available, I avoided specifying them because, at
fan-provided reheat moves the supply air away from the first, there was very little independent third-party testing
saturation curve. So one must balance the risk-avoiding verification of their published capacity and even less data
design benefit of fan-provided reheat against the added on their long-term reliability. And perhaps the inertia of
latent load and resultant energy penalty associated with “that’s how I’ve always done it” came into play.
draw-through air-handling equipment. Now plenum fans and plenum fan arrays have a track
Finally, use of blow-through air-handling equipment record of performance and independent third-party test-
almost necessitates either plenum fans or plenum fan ing verification of their published capacity. Because the
air discharge pattern downstream of a plenum fan tends
to be much more uniform, and because enough energy
differential exists to warrant attention, I find that I am
recommending to both myself and the reader to at least
consider—with appropriate caution—specifying air-han-
dling equipment in the blow-through configuration in
the humid climate zones. Doing so in conventional office
or educational occupancies offers energy savings by add-
ing fan heat prior to the cooling coil and allowing for a net
reduction in latent heat load. In health-care occupancies,
using plenum fans or plenum fan arrays in the draw-
through position with respect to the cooling coil, but in
the blow-through position with respect to the final filters
For thermal comfort–this is will guard against moisture accumulation and possible
microbial growth in the final filter bank.
the standard.
ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 55-2017 1. 2016 ASHRAE Handbook—HVAC Systems and Equipment, Chap. 4.
2. 2016 ASHRAE Handbook—HVAC Systems and Equipment, Chap. 4,
Thermal Environmental Conditions for Figure 1, p. 4.4.
Human Occupancy 3. ASHRAE Standard 169-2013, Climatic Data for Building Design
Standards, Table B-1: U.S. Climate Zones by State and County.
4. 2016 ASHRAE Handbook—HVAC Systems and Equipment, Chap. 21, Section 7, p. 21.7.
5. 2016 ASHRAE Handbook—HVAC Systems and Equipment, Chap. 23,
Section 7, pp. 23.9 – 23.14.
6. ANSI/ASHRAE/ASHE Standard 170-2013, Ventilation of Health
Care Facilities, ¶6.4.2.



Joseph W. Lstiburek

Increasing Permeance

Scratch Coat
Brown Coat
Finish Coat

PHOTO 1 Pompeii. Stucco applied over Roman brick. Minor issue with Mount Vesuvius in 79 A.D. FIGURE 1 Traditional Stucco. Each successive layer to the exterior was
more vapor open than the layer it covered. Yup. Old timers had it dialed in. Today? Not so much.

The Coming
How can you take a system with thousands of years of history and screw it up? Easy.
Keep improving it until it does not work. Babylonians used stucco. Egyptians used it.
Greeks used it. Romans used it (Photo 1). Everyone used it and everyone uses it. But it
sure has changed and what we put it over sure has changed.
Over several millennia† stucco has gone from lime- Type of Stucco Permeance1,2
based to lime-Portland cement-based to Portland Traditional Lime-Based Greater Than 20 Perms
cement-based to polymer modified—and each step
Lime-Portland Cement-Based 5 to 10 Perms
of the way it has gotten stronger—and less vapor
Portland Cement-Based 1 to 5 Perms
This has had huge consequences. Duh. When walls get Polymer Modified Less Than 1 Perm

wet, they can’t dry. They used to be able to. Today? Not Traditional lime-based stucco was three layers:
so much. scratch coat, brown coat and finish coat (Figure 1). Each
*We were here before almost a decade ago (“The Perfect Storm Over Stucco,” ASHRAE Journal, February 2008)—more problems now,
more worried now.
†“Kiloyears.” Yes, this is a valid term. Who knew?



successive layer to the exterior was

more vapor open than the layer
it covered. Yup. Old timers had it
dialed in. Today? Not so much.
Stucco historically had good
compressive strength but not very
good tensile strength. As we have
manipulated the stucco “recipe”
over the years, compressive strength
FIGURE 2 Stucco Tinkertoy. The older stucco Tinkertoys had larger “voids” than newer Tinkertoys.
has gotten better. And over the Water molecules could move through the older stucco Tinkertoys more easily than the newer
years so has tensile strength. To Tinkertoys. FIGURE 3 Polymer Modified Tinkertoy. Another Tinkertoy inside the voids of the original
Tinkertoy. This new Tinkertoy has tensile strength that now complements the original Tinkertoy that
that end we have added cow dung, had the good compressive strength. Good news. Except now the voids are much smaller because of
egg whites, pigs blood and finally this new Tinkertoy taking up much of the space in the voids of the original Tinkertoy.
polymers to the recipe. The “key”
to the recipe is to create a strong than the scratch coat depending on board (OSB). We were here before
“Tinkertoy”‡ (Figure 2). The older what is added and how much. Oops.# (“The Evolution of Walls,” ASHRAE
stucco Tinkertoys had larger “voids” We used to put the stucco over Journal, June 2009). We increased
than newer Tinkertoys. Water mol- brick and stone. If things got wet, so the strength of the substrate and
ecules could move through the older what? Nothing to rot. And the walls increased constructability. But we
stucco Tinkertoys more easily than were not insulated. Lots of energy reduced permeance and therefore
the newer Tinkertoys. But all of the flow. Lots of energy available for dry- drying, and we reduced the ability
Tinkertoys could be pulled apart ing. Lots of drying. Life was good. of penetrating water to be redistrib-
pretty easily. Then we started to put stucco over uted, and we increased the moisture
So what to do? Ah, add another wood. Wood rots. But it does not rot sensitivity of substrate. We were
Tinkertoy inside the voids of the unless you get it real wet for a long also here before (“Inward Drive –
original Tinkertoy (Figure 3). The time. We didn’t get the wood real wet Outward Drying,” ASHRAE Journal,
new Tinkertoy has tensile strength for a long time. And more impor- June 2017). None of this was good.
that now complements the origi- tantly it was real wood. And we We then insulated. And we insu-
nal Tinkertoy that had the good didn’t insulate the walls. Lots of dry- lated. And insulated some more. This
compressive strength. Good ing available even if the real wood reduced the ability of the assemblies
news. Except now the voids are got real wet. We learned to put the to dry when they got wet. A poorly
much smaller because of this new stucco over building paper to reduce insulated wall sheathed with plywood
Tinkertoy taking up much of the the water entry. Life was still good. covered with building paper and
space in the voids of the original Then we did three things. We stucco could get wet and dry before
Tinkertoy. The water molecules don’t stopped using real wood. We insu- real damage occurred. A well-insu-
move so easily any more. Welcome to lated—a lot. And we stopped putting lated wall sheathed with OSB covered
polymer modification.§ the stucco over building paper. with building paper and Portland
The new recipe does not always We went from woven branchesII to cement-based stucco, not so much.
follow the old rules laid out in board sheathing. Then from board Could we make it worse? Yes,
Figure 1. Sometimes the finish coat sheathing to plywood. Then, finally, of course. We can improve build-
and brown coat are less permeable from plywood to oriented strand ing papers. We could make them
dimensionally stable. When building
were invented in 1914 by Charles Pajeau to enable future engineers to under-
stand materials science. Pajeau was a stonemason. It doesn’t get better than this. papers (aka, water resistive barri-
§Apologies to real material scientists and chemical engineers for this oversimplification of ers or WRBs) were hygroscopic, they
the real world.
#Not good when you are on the coast of a big body of water with salt in it. Salt solution gets
Joseph W. Lstiburek, Ph.D., P.Eng., is a principal of
in, phase change happens, salt gets left behind, osmosis, fun, blisters, bond failure. Building Science Corporation in Westford, Mass. Visit
IIWattle and daub.



Dimensionally Unstable
Hygroscopic WRBs “Good”

FIGURE 4 Dimensionally Unstable Building Paper.

When building papers (aka water resistive barriers
or WRBs) were hygroscopic, they expanded and
contracted and stucco did not bond effectively to
them. PHOTO 2 Stucco Bonded to Building Paper.
When stucco bonds to building paper, the building
paper loses water repellency and its ability to drain.

PHOTO 3 (TOP) Vancouver Condo. Classic build-

ing design. Folks tried to blame the lack of
overhangs. PHOTO 4 (BOTTOM) Vancouver Tarp.
You could tell you were in Vancouver based on
the number of tarps and scaffolding covering the
rotting buildings.

the 1990s, and we almost rotted that

great city to the ground. Low perme-
ance stucco, high thermal resistance
wall assemblies, OSB sheathing and
dimensionally stable WRBs.** You
could tell you were in Vancouver
based on the number of tarps and
scaffolding covering the rotting
buildings (Photos 3 and 4).
The images were dramatic: “crying”
Vancouver stucco (Photo 5), which was
stucco bonded to plastic WRBs (Photo
PHOTO 5 (LEFT) More Vancouver. “Crying” stucco. PHOTO 6 (TOP) Still More Vancouver. Stucco bonded to 6) and rotting OSB behind plastic
plastic WRB. PHOTO 7 (BOTTOM) Vancouver End Game. Rotting OSB behind plastic WRB.
WRBs (Photo 7). We should have paid
attention. Vancouver happened first
expanded and contracted and stucco paper loses water repellency and its because of the exposure and because
did not bond effectively to them ability to drain (Photo 2). Could we the changes to thermal resistance and
(Figure 4). Manufacturers of building make it worse? Yes, of course. We material properties happened early.
papers began to make them more could develop plastic WRBs that are Then things began to move south
hydrophobic and dimensionally even more dimensionally stable so and east. First on the multistory
stable. How could this be bad? We the stucco bond is even more robust, wood frame buildings because the
began to get the stucco bonding to and the material even more sensi- rain exposure increases with height
building paper. When stucco bonds tive to loss of water repellency. (Photo 8) then on regular wood frame
to building paper, the building It all came together in Vancouver in low rise (Photo 9).
**Vancouveralso had interior polyethylene vapor barriers that completely eliminated any interior drying. Made it worse. But even if there
had been no poly, the buildings were doomed. It just would have taken a little longer.


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Bond Break

Dimensionally Stable WRB

PHOTO 8 (LEFT) Multistory Wood Frame. Things began to move south and east. First on the multistory wood
frame buildings because the rain exposure increases with height. PHOTO 9 (RIGHT) Wood Frame Low Rise. Even
though the exposure is less on low rise, they are not immune.

It became clear there were issues of the more effective means of accom- FIGURE 5 Bond Break. It became clear that
with WRBs behind stucco, and the plishing both is to provide a drainage there were issues with WRBs, and the first
intervention was to use two layers—an outer
first intervention was to use two lay- mat between the bond break and the layer that would act as a bond break and an
ers—an outer layer that would act WRB (Figure 6). We have learned this on inner layer that was the “true” WRB.
as a bond break and an inner layer the multistory wood frame buildings
that was the “true” WRB (Figure 5). (Photos 10 and 11). We learned it on the So what do we need to do? Easy.
Unfortunately, this was not enough. multistory wood frame buildings first Provide a 3/8 in. (9.5 mm) air space
The assemblies needed enhanced because they began to experience the behind stucco installed over OSB
drainage and enhanced drying. One problems first. sheathing in regions where it rains

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Drainage Mat

FIGURE 6 Drainage and Drying Gap. The assem-

blies needed enhanced drainage and enhanced PHOTO 11 Drainage and Drying
drying. One of the more effective means of PHOTO 10 Multistory Wood Frame Done Right. We learned to Gap. Plastic WRB covered with
accomplishing both is to provide a drainage mat do it correctly on the multistory wood frame buildings first a drainage mat with an integral
between the bond break and the WRB. because they began to experience the problems first. bond break.

more than 20 in. (508 mm) per year. That’s it. References
Things are getting worse. But things have to get intol- 1. Mukhopadhyaya, et al. 2007. “Development of high perfor-
erably bad before we change. We didn’t learn from mance stucco as cladding material.” IRC MEWS.
Vancouver. I predict they are going to get intolerably bad 2. Straube, J. 2009. “Building science for strawbale buildings.”
sooner than later. The stucco-pocalypse is coming. Building Science Digest, 112.



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Marwa Zaatari

6 Reasons Why Commercial

Buildings Operate Without
Adequate Ventilation

Outdoor air ventilation is required in building codes and standards to dilute indoor
concentrations of indoor-generated pollutants. Lower outdoor air ventilation
rates are associated with decreases in satisfaction with indoor air quality (IAQ) and
increases in building-related health symptoms in office workers. Reductions in office
and schoolwork performance and increased absence rates have also been demon-
strated at lower ventilation rates.1–6 Despite the evidence of the importance of venti-
lation, commercial buildings often have the outdoor damper closed, eliminating any
intentional ventilation of the building.
My team and I have conducted field walkthroughs in much easier to measure compared to employee produc-
hundreds of commercial buildings that have the out- tivity or the impact on student learning, so the opera-
door air damper closed. And this is not just in low-rent, tions also tend to optimize around energy savings only.
run-down buildings, but also in Class A office space,
government buildings and universities. Facility man- 1. HVAC Systems Designed With Too Little Capacity
agers have many reasons for closing the outdoor air Most buildings are designed for one of three differ-
damper, but the following list contains the top ones. ent possible HVAC capacities: 99.6%, 99% or 98% of the
They generally are related to two primary facility man- annual cumulative frequency of occurrence of tempera-
agement concerns: comfort and cost. Because IAQ often tures and humidity for the building’s location. Thus, if
has a much subtler effect on people compared to ther- designing for 99%, these designs cannot meet the load
mal comfort, HVAC system operations tend to optimize
for comfort and to minimize complaints, while some- Marwa Zaatari, Ph.D., is vice president building solutions at enVerid Systems in Needham,
times compromising IAQ. Similarly, energy costs are Mass.


for 1% of the time each year, or roughly 88 hours a year. of calibration. These issues combined with general effi-
For a cooling system, that could be roughly three hours ciency declines make it difficult for some HVAC systems
per day for the 30 hottest days of the summer. A facility to keep up with the load on those very hot (or cold) days.
manager doesn’t want to hear complaints day after day When this happens, the first line of defense can be to
because the building temperature is too hot, so they may close the outdoor damper.
be inclined to close the outdoor air damper. Even bigger
problems may arise because it might become too much 3. Financial Incentives to Decrease Energy
hassle to decide whether to open or close the outdoor air It is extremely common for property managers and
damper each day of the summer, so the damper remains facility managers to receive pay bonuses for reducing
closed the entire summer until it is time for economizer energy expenses. Usually, these programs look at the
mode. lower utility bills and assume the building is simply
In a year-round hot climate, the damper may remain being run more effectively. But these programs need
closed year-round. This same behavior occurs in cold to document what exactly was done, since one of the
climates, where again a 1% design results in 88 hours easiest ways to save energy—without receiving comfort
in which the HVAC system is not designed for the heat- complaints from occupants—is to stop conditioning out-
ing load, and the damper gets shut and remains shut door air. In fact, outdoor air is typically 30% to 50% of the
throughout the winter. Thus, many buildings are not HVAC load, so it provides a significant reduction with
being ventilated for three to four months in the summer almost no effort. Owners may be saving some money,
and three to four months in the winter, or worse, all 12 but they may be putting themselves at a liability risk.
months in hot climates of the United States.
Building owners expect 20 to 25 years of life from their 4. Avoid Triggering Freeze Stats
HVAC equipment, and the EPA reports that based on During the winter, cold outdoor airflow can trigger
data from NOAA 2016, the continental U.S. has seen a 1°F “freeze stats,” temperature-sensing devices that prevent
to 3°F (1.8°C to 5.4°C) increase in average temperatures the coils in an air-handling unit (AHU) from freezing
over the past 20 to 25 years.7 These changes in tempera- by shutting the system down. Freeze stats are typically
ture can change a 99% design to a 98% design. Suddenly set for 38°F (3.3°C), and if not installed correctly or
those 88 hours become 176 hours, and a building is faced maintained properly, they will trigger the system to shut
with three hours a day for 59 days that it cannot meet the down unnecessarily. For example, a freeze stat placed
load. too close to the outdoor air intake, rather than down-
Finally, input from building engineers is too often not stream of the first heating coil (or upstream from the
part of the HVAC design process. If they were involved first non-heating coil) will get triggered unnecessarily.
in reviewing HVAC designs, they might insist on a 99.6% Also, AHUs can sometimes have stratification of air in
design criterion—such that only 35 hours a year are too the mixing box, resulting in the cold outdoor air and
hot or cold for the HVAC system. Meanwhile, the build- warm return air not mixing and causing freeze stats to
ing owner, who is part of the HVAC design review but trigger on cold days. To avoid these unnecessary AHU
does not deal with the day-to-day management of the shutdowns, the facility manager may choose to reduce
building, may not realize the impact of these design the outdoor air on cold days by closing the outdoor air
choices. damper—and rather than take any chances, they may
close it for the entire winter.
2. Aging Equipment or Poorly Maintained Systems
As HVAC equipment ages, not only does its efficiency 5. Outdoor Air Pollution
decrease, but lack of adequate maintenance frequently Outdoor air pollution can be very bad in major
impacts its capacity. Common examples are coils getting metropolitan areas, or even in small towns if you are
covered with dust; filters not being replaced, reducing located near a highway or airport. Municipalities can
airflow through the unit (in constant volume units); declare an Ozone Action Day, which could prompt
energy recovery ventilators (ERVs) breaking and not get- a facility manager to close the outdoor air damper.
ting repaired; and sensors used for controls going out Studies show that outdoor air pollution impacts



productivity8, and even just working in a building near or accidental events that can cause an IAQ issue.
a highway can be bad for your health.9 While ASHRAE Incentives program should be built around IAQ, not
Standard 62.1-2016 requires treating ozone, it is only only around energy savings.
required in locations where the ozone levels are quite
severe and well above the non-attainment classifica- Conclusion
tion from the EPA. There is too often a systemic failure in building ventila-
Also, other outdoor contaminants, such as carbon tion practices. These failures have a direct and negative
monoxide, NOx, and SOx, cannot be addressed by most impact on indoor air quality. To avoid these failures, the
filtration technologies. If a building has its outdoor air important messages are: 1) Place IAQ on the table at the
near a bus stop or major road, occupant complaints beginning of the design process to have a chance for IAQ,
about vehicle exhaust fumes may result in a facility energy and other project objectives to mutually reinforce
manager closing the outdoor air damper. each other rather than to be at odds with one another.
ASHRAE’s IAQ guide provides a wealth of information on
6. Lack of Appreciation and Accountability for IAQ how to design for IAQ.10 2) Properly commission, operate
Often, a lack of knowledge exists about the impor- and maintain the building systems with IAQ as one of the
tance of IAQ and how to solve an IAQ problem. optimization factors. 3) Have staff with the proper train-
Provision of acceptable IAQ requires conscientious ing, knowledge, tools and skills to follow the IAQ policy
effort by building owners and managers. It starts by and react promptly and effectively to failures that may
setting IAQ policy, providing the staff with educa- compromise indoor air quality. As designers, we owe it to
tion, tools and responsibilities so they can be proac- the occupants—the employees, customers, students and
tive about IAQ and notice malfunctioning equipment visitors—to do our best to ensure their health and pro-
ductivity are not compromised by poor indoor air quality.

1. Seppänen, O. A., W.J. Fisk, M.J. Mendell. 1999. “Association
of ventilation rates and CO2 concentrations with health and other
responses in commercial and institutional buildings.” Indoor Air
2. Seppänen, O.A., W.J. Fisk. 2004. “Summary of human re-
sponses to ventilation.” Indoor Air 14 Suppl 7:102–118.
3. Fisk, W.J., A.G. Mirer, M.J. Mendell. 2009. “Quantitative
relationship of sick building syndrome symptoms with ventilation
rates.” Indoor Air 19(2):159–165.
4. Sundell, J., et al. 2011. “Ventilation rates and health: multidis-
ciplinary review of the scientific literature.” Indoor Air 21(3):191–204.
5. Li, Y., et al. 2007. “Role of ventilation in airborne transmission
of infectious agents in the built environment—a multidisciplinary
systematic review.” Indoor Air 17(1):2–18.
6. Mendell, M.J., et al. 2013. “Association of classroom ventila-
tion with reduced illness absence: a prospective study in California
elementary schools.” Indoor Air 23(6):515–528.
7. EPA. 2016. “Climate Change Indicators: U.S. and Global
Temperature.” U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. www.epa.
8. Chang, T., J.G. Zivin, T. Gross, M. Neidell. 2016.“The Effect of
Pollution on Worker Productivity: Evidence from Call-Center Work-
ers in China.” National Bureau of Economic Research. www.nber.
9. Lane, K.J., et al. 2016. “Association of modeled long-term
personal exposure to ultra-fine particles with inflammatory and
coagulation biomarkers.” Environmental International (92–93):173–82.
10. ASHRAE. 2009. The Indoor Air Quality Guide: Best Practices for De-
sign, Construction and Commissioning.



Andy Pearson

Let’s Get Critical

be superheated because the liquid cools it down. The two
Last month, we celebrated the genius contribution states of the fluid converge on the saturation temperature
of Richard Mollier to refrigeration design with his for- at the prevailing pressure and everything is stable.
mulation of the pressure-enthalpy chart. This is a good However, in some cases, particularly if the gas and liq-
introduction to a few key concepts related to the chart uid phases are not well mixed, a temperature difference
that have become topical recently. between gas and liquid can persist. This might arise when
Everything to the left of the saturated liquid line is there is stratified flow in a tube, or in a receiver vessel
liquid cooled to a temperature below its boiling point. with cold liquid at the bottom. This can be very confus-
This is “subcooled liquid,” which simply means it has to ing. Another example, which can also cause equipment
be warmed up before it will start boiling. Conversely, damage, is when small droplets of liquid are carried in
everything to the right of the saturated vapor line is streamline flow in the suction line of a compressor. The
gas heated above its condensing temperature. This is droplets are so small that the surface tension of the liquid
“superheated gas,” which means it needs to be cooled a creates a pressurizing effect, which produces an appar-
bit before it starts turning to liquid. In general, if a mix- ent subcooling within the droplet, preventing it from
ture of liquid and gas is well mixed, the liquid can’t be Andy Pearson, Ph.D., C.Eng., is group managing director at Star Refrigeration in
subcooled because the gas warms it up, and the gas can’t Glasgow, UK.

Principles of Heating,
Ventilating and Air-
Conditioning, 8th ed.
Textbook based on ASHRAE
Handbook outlines key HVAC



evaporating and enabling it to persist over long distances because heat has to be added to it. The critical point is sim-
from the evaporator to the compressor. ply the point at which the two densities become the same. It
These droplets can cause mechanical damage by wash- is then not possible to differentiate between gas and liquid.
ing oil from the bearings, or erosion on valves, or can The fluid above the critical point is known as “supercritical
agglomerate and cause excessive pressure when com- fluid”—this is neither liquid nor gas. The more heat it con-
pressed. The only way to deal with the small droplets is to tains the more gas-like it becomes, and at lower heat con-
cause them to group together into larger drops that can tent it becomes almost incompressible, more like liquid.
then be separated from the gas flow. Many other weird things happen at the critical point on
The place on the chart where the two saturation lines the Mollier chart. As well as the latent heat diminishing
meet is called the “critical point.” This used to be a “don’t to zero, the line of constant temperature (isotherm) that
even go there” zone on the Mollier chart. For low-pressure touches the top of the dome is, at that instant, horizontal;
refrigerants such as R-11 and R-123, the critical point was its gradient is zero. The specific heat capacity of the gas,
usually off the top of the chart. Recent interest in CO2 which is proportional to the reciprocal of the gradient of
refrigeration systems that pressurize the gas to a level well the isotherm, therefore becomes infinite and the speed
above the critical pressure has created new interest in of sound in the fluid drops to zero. All this weirdness sug-
what happens up there. gests that a process that passes through the critical point
To really appreciate this, it is necessary to understand would be problematic, whether an expansion from high
what defines the critical point. In general, at a given pres- to low pressure or the rejection of heat from high to low
sure, liquid is more dense than gas. As saturated gas is enthalpy. In fact, no drama occurs and since the process is
pressurized, its density increases; however, if liquid is pres- just transiting through the critical point from one condi-
surized and kept at its saturation point, its density reduces tion to another, life goes on as normal.

The Guide to Meeting the

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Part 1

Fog Computing

There’s a deep fog rolling in across the data center industry as distributed comput-
ing further muddies the waters of the old central computing model. Traditional data
centers have been defined by a structure with four walls and a roof over it. They can be
brick and mortar, modular, containerized, or combinations of these. This has been the
long-standing industry location and model for data storage and computing, which can
be thought of as the “grounded” or “earth-bound” version of centralized data centers.
In recent years, computing has migrated further away these functions being performed at a centralized
from a centralized model to a distributed model through location.
“edge” data centers and various forms of colocation data Fog computing has made the predicting and planning
centers. The distributed computing model attempts of centralized and distributed computing, storage, and
to put more of the data storage and computing power networking much more challenging, hence the fogging
closer to the end use in what we now refer to as “the conditions. This column is Part 1 of a series that intro-
cloud.” duces the concept of fog computing and the evolution of
Taken a step further, the Internet of Things (IoT) con- the data center leading up to this condition.
tinues to push more compute and storage capabilities
into the end devices themselves. These devices include Grounded (Centralized) Data Centers
traditional known items like smartphones and personal Brick and mortar data centers are the staple of the data
computers, but more recently, less-known devices like center industry and what most MEP engineers think of
autonomous vehicles, home appliances, smart-lighting, when the term “data center” is mentioned.
meters, personal robotic assistants, and digital displays. Original design of these structures involved largely
This is where things get a bit “foggy” because the lines known boundary conditions:
between the traditional “grounded” model and the • Known code requirements for building construc-
“cloud” model have been blurred. tion;
“Fog computing,” as it’s become known, is the • Defined spatial parameters;
wider distribution of end-user clients or near-user • Defined power density;
edge devices that carry out a substantial portion of Donald L. Beaty, P.E., is president, David Quirk, P.E., is vice president, and Jeff Jaworski
storage, compute, and communication, rather than is an engineer at DLB Associates Consulting Engineers, in Eatontown, N.J.



• Defined cadence for the ITE (aisle/equipment spac- Cloud Computing

ing); The data center terms, such as cloud computing, are
• Defined air management approach; and derived from terms used to describe the internet and
• Defined PUE target. other private network architectures. All forms of cloud
Further, industry boundary conditions have been pub- are essentially “remote” hosting, computing, and/or
lished in ASHRAE’s Datacom Equipment Power Trends and storage of data from the owned and occupied premises
Cooling Applications, 2nd ed.1 of a given owner, whether public or private forms of it.
These boundary conditions led to well-defined HVAC Cloud computing involves a networked aggregation
requirements and predictable performance for a given of hardware and software that is abstract or “clouded”
geographical location. from the end-user.
Brick and mortar data centers have remained The context of cloud computing is the attempt to marry
popular for many of the industry giants and corpo- information technology (IT) strategies and overall busi-
rate enterprise alike because it translates into direct ness strategies. The rapid advancements of the former
control. Some benefits to having the ability to control combined with the infinite variability of the latter make
include: for a myriad of possibilities of how to achieve an aligned
• Physical assets, such as: outcome. This is the driver behind why there are so many
• The quality, reliability, optimization, and mainte- variants for the types and models of cloud computing.2
nance of the infrastructure, and As we’ve seen with historical trends, data generation
• The stored data itself; its security, analysis, integ- and consumption continues at an exponential rate glob-
rity, etc.; ally. Nowhere has this been more apparent than in the
• Scaling ability; and social media space and the rate of increase of data usage
• Logical, physical, and cyber-security. in “An Internet Minute.”3
Today’s data center and telecommunication models The cooling challenges of a cloud computing facility
are “centered” on the theme of centralization, known involve being adaptive and flexible enough to cope with
as centralized computing. Enterprise, governmental, an unguaranteed, limitless, capacity on-demand load-
telecom, and internet platforms all have centralized data profile while still being energy efficient and resilient to
centers to some scale. The consolidation of hardware, scheduled and unscheduled outages (e.g., equipment
software, points of presence, etc., simplified the cost maintenance, utility interruptions, etc.).
models, regulatory compliance, staffing, cybersecurity, Cloud computing is a rapidly evolving industry. The
data analysis, and so on. cloud’s need to be flexible and adaptable is driven by
What is also characteristic of these data centers is their technology advancements and highly variable business
long lead times to budget, plan, procurement, design, needs that are expected to be unlimited and on-demand
approvals, construct, commission, and outfit with ITE but with little to no risk, guarantee, or commitment on
for production and operation. As more traditional the part of the customer.
procurement models have dominated and commod- As a result, the data center facilities that house cloud
itization of everything has occurred, it has taken even computing infrastructure are subject to highly volatile
more time for these traditional data center construction power and cooling loads in terms of their magnitude
approaches to go through these steps. This is particularly and profile. This compounds the challenge for data cen-
true for the budgeting, planning, procurement, and ter designs to not only maintain their 24/7 availability,
approval phases. but to do so for loads that can significantly fluctuate
Further, many publicly traded companies prefer to while still attempting to be energy efficient and not
reduce their capital expenditures as they mature and capital or operating cost prohibitive.
take the hits on the operating side of the balance sheet. The diversity in cloud models brings about different
To work around some of these challenges and oth- challenges for the associated infrastructure. With enter-
ers we’ve talked about in prior columns, the industry prise data centers or private cloud, the growth model
emerged with new models of off-site premise hosting or may be known for the company managing the data
“cloud” data centers. center infrastructure. However, some other models of


public, hybrid, or community cloud often create unpre- scaling and optimization of the infrastructure.
dictable growth requirements because the services are
driven by many different businesses operating in this Edge Computing
cloud environment outside the control or visibility of the While much of the data center industry is in the midst
ones managing the data center. of “mega” consolidation of their data centers, one could
The use of the services in the cloud can be highly vari- argue they are moving in the wrong direction. Data ana-
able, resulting in more variable load swings within the lytics and knowledge generation at the source of data,
data center. This results in the need for extremely scal- otherwise known as edge computing, is the next frontier.
able infrastructure. It is true there are strong arguments for centralized com-
Despite all the variations of cloud, one thing is consis- puting and data storage, yet distributed edge computing is
tent; they still largely take the form of “brick and mor- emerging as a better means of managing the growing num-
tar” data centers, including all the variations of modu- ber of connections, data development, and data analysis as
lar, container, etc., construction. networks of all types are stretched to their capacities.
The boundary conditions of cloud data centers vary As the term implies, edge computing shifts the “com-
slightly from the centralized “grounded” model in puting” functions to the edge of the telecommunications
that optimization and scaling are more challenging and IT networks. It covers a wide range of technologies
and unknown since the data center owner has little including this small sample:
control over how their customers use the space and • Mobile technologies such as mobile edge comput-
power they purchase. Ironically, the “cloud” serves ing, cloud-based radio access, mobile data acquisition,
dual meaning here and also represents the nature of and mobile signature analysis;
the unknowns (clouds constantly change form) for • Wireless sensor networks;

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• Fog computing; network, over time there is potential for the principles
• Distributed data storage and retrieval; of rapid and automated reconfiguration of network
• Remote cloud services; and resources to be applied more widely and closer to the
• Augmented reality. edge.  A distributed computing resource would become
The edge computing trend is being fueled by many part of this paradigm and that resource now has a name:
other important trends, including the explosion of edge “fog computing.”
devices or sensors (Internet of Things), analytics of con- Further details on edge computing can be read in the
sumer data as sources of targeted advertising, and limi- past column, Exploring Edge Computing.4
tations on network bandwidths, among other things.
In the past, data centers were used primarily to support Fog Computing
internal functions, now they are being used to support end- The industry is pushing the edges of the centralized
user applications and content. Companies are shifting to (ground) and cloud models as they seek to gain more and
obtain more revenue from those applications and content more data on everything the consumer and its associated
through advertising, in particular, targeted advertising. devices are doing. This race to optimize everything and gain
Edge computing essentially moves the “brains” of com- data insights to everything has created a “fog” in between.
puting where less data needs to be moved across tele- Fog computing has been considered a virtualized plat-
communication networks or internet service provider form that is typically located between end-user devices
(ISP) networks. ISP’s and telecom providers are increas- (smart objects and sensors) and the cloud data centers.
ingly under pressure to expand the capacity of their Fog computing has been driven by a host of factors:
networks to manage the exponential growth in data • Increasing compute capabilities in small form-factors;
demands. One way to solve this problem is to architect • Intermittent connectivity with the cloud (interfer-
applications and software solutions with edge comput- ence, remote, etc.);
ing capabilities to reduce the amount of network traffic. • Insufficient network bandwidth and increased
Perhaps one of the best examples of edge computing is latency (software applications are outpacing network
the smartphone in the palm of your hand. The smartphone advances and deployments);
is one example of the mobile edge computing (MEC) trend. • The need for device-to-device communications for
Edge computing translates into more agility for future more real-time applications and machine-to-machine
data center growth. Increasingly, companies are now (M2M) communications; and
beginning to realize the potential competitive advan- • An explosion of smart-devices and small sensors for
tage obtained through increased use of edge-computing everything.
strategies. They are also beginning to realize there are Fog computing has been labeled many things, but
significant cost savings available through a divergence perhaps it’s single greatest purpose is to enable “Aware
from centralized data management. Machine-to-Machine Communication.” A way to think
For data center consultants, this means looking at of this is sensors in virtually everything. In other words,
future-proofing concepts with more dimensions. Those everything becomes digital and has a digital signature
dimensions need to no longer only consider increased and data associated with it.
capacity but the higher potential of stranded assets and/ There needs to be a means of network communica-
or the need for more dynamic exit strategies. tion amongst devices that is not dependent upon bog-
Today’s designs are primarily singularly focused on ging down the same network that humans use because
future increases in loads and space needs. However, as machines will communicate orders of magnitude greater.
we’ve seen with the introduction of virtualization, some Machine-to-machine communications generate data at
disruptions can result in the reverse trend. Edge com- different velocity, veracity, and volumes than humans.
puting is another such trend that aims to diversify the As stated in the last column, Changing Landscape of Data
data center across more assets in smaller segments. Centers, Part 4: Future Disruptive ITE and Paradigms, data cen-
There is a link between virtualization, IoT, cloud, ters are about to undergo yet another major disruption.
Software Defined Networks (SDN), and edge comput- This next disruption may be more about the monumen-
ing.  While SDN is focused on data centers and the core tal shifts in software and data demands.5


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Closing Comments services to the end devices. This includes both
Just when the industry thought things had cleared to mobile and stationary assets like smart appliances,
a predictable model in the data center industry, the fog autonomous vehicles, personal AI assistants, virtual
settles in and blurred the lines between the traditional and augmented reality wear, drones, M2M sensors,
“grounded brick and mortar” data centers and the and even robotics. We’ll further explore fog com-
“cloud” data center models. puting and the IoT evolution it supports in the next
The centralized model meant that data center con- column.
sultants had a single large, predictable target to focus Rapid changes will continue in the data center indus-
on. Edge computing changes the game entirely and try, but all indications are that the new norm will be the
distributes the data center everywhere and anywhere. hybrid that is a combination of centralized computing
The definition of the data center will need to be revis- (cloud) and distributed computing (edge).
ited as its location, size, and loads will no longer be as
predictable. References
Edge computing emerged to solve a host of problems 1. ASHRAE. 2012. Datacom Equipment Power Trends and Cooling Ap-
plications, Second Edition.
associated with the ground and cloud models, but it’s 2. Beaty, D. 2013. “Cloud Computing 101.” ASHRAE Journal (10).
not the final frontier. Solutions like mobile edge com- 3. Quirk, D., B. Durham. 2015. “Social media data centers, telco’s,
puting, wireless mesh networks, remote cloud services, and net neutrality battles.” Data Center Journal (2).
machine-to-machine, and a host of other services aim to 4. Beaty, D., D. Quirk. 2015. “Exploring edge computing.” ASHRAE
Journal (12).
further optimize data collection, compute, storage, and
5. Beaty, D., D. Quirk, J. Jaworski. 2017. “Changing landscape of
transmission. data centers, part 4: future disruptive ITE and paradigms.” ASHRAE
Fog computing aims to further distribute software Journal (9).

Procedures for
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Peel Yamashita Kuski Phoenix Hart Schmitt

• Brent Schroeder, group president Elected to another three-year term on the

Peel Becomes New Heating and Air Conditioning, Emerson; board of directors was Mats Sandor, techni-

AHRI Chairman • Michael Schwartz, CEO Daikin Applied

Americas, Daikin; and
cal director, Systemair AB.
AMCA also awarded Distinguished Ser-
The Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Re- • Kevin Wheeler, president and COO,
vice Awards to Timothy D. Kuski, Member
frigeration Institute (AHRI) held its Annual A.O. Smith. ASHRAE, and C.F. Yang.
Meeting Nov. 12-14 in Miami, during which
it elected its new officers and presented Several individuals received awards from
awards to industry leaders. AHRI. Receiving the Richard C. Schulze SMACNA Elects
Award for distinguished service were Joe
AHRI’s new chairman is Chris Peel, presi-
dent and COO of Atlanta-based Rheem Man-
Boros of Rheem Manufacturing; Janine Board Members
Brady of AHRI; Gus Faris, Life Member The Sheet Metal and Air Conditioning Con-
ufacturing. The officers are: ASHRAE, of Nailor Industries; Nick Giuffre tractors’ National Association (SMACNA)
• Vice Chairman: Dave Regnery, execu- of Bradford White Corp.; Rob “Dutch” Usel- elected four members to its board of direc-
tive vice president, Climate & Industrial ton, Member ASHRAE, of Lennox; and Jim tors at their annual business meeting on Oct.
Segments, Ingersoll Rand; VerShaw of Trane. The 2017 recipient of AH- 25 at SMACNA’s 74th Annual Convention.
• Vice Chairman: Bill Steel, president RI’s Public Service Award was John Ehlen of Four directors will serve four-year terms.
and CEO, Bard Manufacturing; Penton Media. Receiving Distinguished Ser- One director appointed mid-year is serving
• Treasurer: Ron Duncan, president, vice Awards—AHRI’s highest honor—were a two-year term. The newly elected directors
Magic Aire; Dave LaGrand, recently retired from Nortek serving four-year terms are:
• Immediate Past Chairman: Chris Global; and Tom Watson, Presidential Mem- • Kyle Bellmon, United Mechanical Inc.,
Drew, executive vice president, Burnham ber/Fellow/Life Member ASHRAE, recently Oklahoma City;
Holdings. retired from Daikin Applied. • James E. Hall, Member ASHRAE,
The Executive Committee: AHRI also announced the promotion of Car- Systems Management and Balancing Inc.,
• Dennis Appel, executive vice president oline Davidson-Hood to be the association’s Waukee, Iowa;
-Heat Transfer Solutions, Modine; general counsel. She formerly was associate • Gary G. Luthe Sr., Luthe Sheet Metal
• Gary Bedard, executive vice president, general counsel. Inc., Cherry Hill, N.J.;
president and COO, Worldwide Refrigera- • Thomas E. Martin, Associate Member
tion, Lennox;
• Jason Bingham, president, Residential
Yamashita Named ASHRAE, T.H. Martin Inc., Cleveland;
• Serving a two-year term is James M.
HVAC and Supply, Ingersoll Rand; AMCA President Morgan, Worcester Air Conditioning, Ash-
land, Mass.
• R. Bruce Carnevale, president & COO,
The Air Movement and Control Association
Bradford White Corp.; SMACNA elected four new members to its
(AMCA) International Inc. introduced Doug
• Jim Dagley, president, Heating and College of Fellows. They were:
Yamashita, Member ASHRAE and execu-
Water Solutions, Watts;
tive vice president of sales and marketing at • John Comforte, Climatemp Inc.,
• John Galyen, president North America,
Acme Engineering & Manufacturing Corp., Broadview, Ill.;
as its president for 2017 – 18. Also during its • Joseph Lansdell, Poynter Sheet Metal,
• Chris LaPietra, business leader, Sta-
2017 Annual Meeting, AMCA elected the fol- Greenwood, Ind.;
tionary Refrigerants, Honeywell;
lowing to three-year terms on its board of • Bruce Sychuk, Member ASHRAE,
• Doug Murdock, president and COO,
directors: SMACNA British Columbia, Surrey, B.C.,
Canada; and
• Chris Nelson, president North America • Yongning Chen, senior engineer, Zhe-
• Dana Thompson, SMACNA, Chantilly,
HVAC Systems and Service, Carrier; jiang Yilida Ventilator Company Ltd;
• Earle Pfefferkorn, president, Cleaver- • Trinity Persful, vice president of mar-
Brooks; keting, Twin City Fan Companies Ltd; and Julie Muller-Neff, Esq., executive vice pres-
• Rod Rushing, vice president and • Mike Wolf, Member ASHRAE, director ident of the SMACNA Western Washing-
president Building Solutions North America, of regulatory business development, Green- ton chapter, received the Petersen-Dunn
Johnson Controls; heck Fan Corp. Award as Chapter Executive of the Year. Milt



Kosterno Thomann Hernandez Wrobel Wirth Clark

Goodman, executive vice president of ACCO & Drives business unit for Commercial In- and knowledge manager in its membership
Engineered Systems, Glendale, Calif., re- dustrial Solutions Americas. Most recently, team.
ceived the SMACNA Contractor of the Year Wiseman was vice president/general man-
Dino DeFeo, P.E., has been named manag-
award. ager for Nidec’s Commercial/Industrial
ing partner of AKF.
Stellar has named Clint Pyle as its new
Vexor Technology has appointed Mario
Heating, Air-conditioning & Refrigeration senior vice president/chief financial officer.
Romero as CEO. Steve Berry will continue
Distributors International (HARDI) has ap- He succeeds Scott Witt as the CFO. Witt has
with Vexor as a board member, shareholder
pointed Stephen Torrice, president of S.G. been promoted to Stellar’s Board of Direc-
and in a senior leadership role.
Torrice Co. based in Wilmington, Mass., as tors, where he will serve as Chair of the Fi-
the interim Northeast Region Director on the David Kosterno is now a vice president in nance Committee.
HARDI board of directors. Torrice replaces the Miami office of WSP USA, heading up the
In addition, Stellar promoted three profes-
Joe Fernandez, who retired from F.W. Webb office’s mechanical department.
sionals to officer-level positions:
Co. earlier this year. WAGO has named Toby Thomann president • Jason Duff to division vice president,
Moser Mayer Phoenix Associates is now of North American headquarters in German- Engineering;
part of the architecture, engineering, plan- town, Wis. Thomann has been with WAGO • Luke Facemyer to division vice
ning firm Clark Patterson Lee (CPL). The for 23 years. WAGO North America named president, Refrigeration Contracting; and
Greensboro, N.C., location will be CPL’s 13th Daniel Hernandez as the new general man- • Chris Williams to vice president
office. Principals Thomas H. Phoenix, P.E., ager for Mexico. Shaun Nagi is now WAGO’s operations, Mechanical Services.
Presidential Member/Life Member ASHRAE; regional sales manager for British Colombia.
William D. Moser, Jr., AIA; Kenneth C. Scott Carter was promoted to regional sales
John Wrobel has joined Mestek as director of manager for Nor-Lake.
Mayer, Jr., FAIA; J. Alan Cox, AIA; Cheryl S. training and development.
Graeub; and their team of 20 design profes- Pietro “Pete” Giovenco, P.E., was named
sionals joined CPL on Nov. 1. RJN Group, Inc. announced that William
CEO of Bergmann Associates. Giovenco takes
Siegel, P.E., past president and CEO of
EEA Consulting Engineers founder and pres- over from Tom Mitchell, P.E., who served as
Kleinfelder, has been elected to RJN’s Board
ident Mike Hart, Life Member ASHRAE, an- CEO for 14 years, and who will stay on as ex-
of Directors.
nounced he would retire as president at the ecutive vice president for client relations and
end of 2017 and focus on responsibilities as Hill International, Inc. appointed Michael V. business development.
chairman of the board. Vice president Todd Griffin, P.E., regional president, Americas,
RCI, Inc. announced the appointment of Li-
Schmitt, Associate Member ASHRAE, will and Vic Spinabelli, Jr., P.E., to the role of se-
onel Van der Walt as its new executive vice
become president of the Austin-headquar- nior vice president and mid-Atlantic region-
president and CEO. Van der Walt succeeds
tered, employee-owned firm. Paul Scheib- al manager for the company.
James Birdsong, who retired at the end of
meir has been hired as senior project man- The International Code Council (ICC) 2017 after nearly 17 years.
ager in their Austin office. named Kelly D. Sadler, J.D., as its new gov-
ernment relations regional manager for Ar- SmithGroupJJR has hired David Rosenfeld
Alyse M. Falconer, P.E., Member ASHRAE, and Regina VanderWerff to lead business
is now associate principal for Point Energy kansas, Oklahoma and Texas.
development efforts for its San Diego and Los
Innovations. The Plastics Pipe Institute, Inc. recently in- Angeles offices.
stalled members in new roles on its board of
Pierre-Yves Rollet is now CEO of Cooltech Ap-
directors. David Fink is now chairman of the Accurex recently announced that Jim John-
plications, taking over for Christian Muller,
board; Peter Zut, vice chairman; Jim John- son and Deborah Parenza have joined the
founder of the company, who wished to focus
son, advisory council chairman; and Doug Accurex management team, Johnson as di-
more of his time and efforts on accelerating
Keller, treasurer. rector of aftermarket service and Parenza as
the development of the technology as general
business development manager.
manager and chief scientific officer. BSRIA announced the appointment of Tina
Fahmy as its new client relationship manag- Matthew Wirth is now director of training
Nidec Motor Corp. has promoted Chris
er in its Worldwide Market Intelligence De- for North America at Canature WaterGroup.
Wiseman into the role of president of its
partment. Steve Sansom is now information Jill Clark is now the marketing manager.
newly created Commercial Industrial Motors


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asHrae Journal
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Advertisers Index/Reader Service Information ASHRAE JOURNAL
Two fast and easy ways to get additional information on 1791 Tullie Circle NE | Atlanta, GA 30329
(404) 636-8400 | Fax: (678) 539-2174
products & services in this issue:
Greg Martin |
Go to to search for products by category or Associate Publisher, ASHRAE Media Advertising
Vanessa Johnson |
company name. Plus, link directly to advertisers’ Web sites or request Advertising Production Coordinator

information by e-mail, fax or mail. NORTHEAST U.S.

Nelson & Miller Associates –
Denis O’Malley
5 Hillandale Ave., Suite 101
Stamford, CT 06902
*Regional (203) 356-9694 | Fax (203) 356-9695
Company Page Company Page Company Page

AHR Expo Chicago 2018......................13 American Aldes Ventilation Corp.....S120 CECO Environmental Corp...................19
Millennium Media, Inc. –
590 Hickory Flat Road
AAON, Inc ...............................................17 Armacell LLC..................................... S129 China Refrigeration...............................47 Alpharetta, GA 30004
Doug Fix (770) 740-2078 | Fax (678) 405-3327
Lori Gernand-Kirtley (281) 855-0470 | Fax (281) 855-4219
*ASHRAE Standard 170 ..................... 51 Automatic Airflow Balancing ......... S131 Cleaver Brooks ................................. S141;

Accurex, LLC ..........................................57 AQC Industries....................................S25 Climate Control Group.......................S95 OHIO VALLEY U.S.
LaRich & Associates – Tom Lasch
512 East Washington St.
A-J Manufacturing Company, Inc..... 58 Air Monitor Corp ................................S31 Continental Control Systems LLC....S135 Chagrin Falls, OH 44022
(440) 247-1060 | Fax (440) 247-1068
AERMEC ..............................................S99 Control Solutions .............................S163
ACREX.................................................... 59

Babbitt Chainwheels ............................64
ASHRAE Technology Portal................ 61 Cooper-Atkins Corp ...........................S87 Kingwill Company – Baird Kingwill; Jim Kingwill
664 Milwaukee Avenue, Suite 201
Prospect Heights, IL 60070
Baltimore Aircoil co.........................S159 (847) 537-9196 | Fax (847) 537-6519
ASHRAE Principles of HVAC.............. 65 Daikin North America LLC............S6-S7;
Belimo Aircontrols USA ....................S97
ASHRAE Tall Buildings........................ 66 Dambassinas S.A.................................. 45
Lindenberger & Associates, Inc. –
Berner International..........................S41
ASHRAE Standard 55-2017.................52 Danfoss Inc ....................................... S107 Gary Lindenberger; Lori Gernand-Kirtley
7007 Winding Walk Drive, Suite 100
Houston, TX 77095
Bosch Thermotechnology Corp ..... S137
Delta Controls................................... S123 (281) 855-0470 | Fax (281) 855-4219
ASHRAE Standard 62.1 2016..............67;
Bradford White Corp .........................S53
ASHRAE Standard 90.1 2016 ........S164 Delta Cooling Towers....................... S102
Bradford White corp........................S163 LaRich & Associates – Nick LaRich, Tom Lasch
512 East Washington St.
ASHRAE DOAS.......................................70 Delta Products Corp ..........................S59 Chagrin Falls, OH 44022
Building Automation Products Inc..S83
ASHRAE Geothermal ........................... 71 Desiccant Rotors International Pvt. Ltd (440) 247-1060 | Fax (440) 247-1068
Carel USA LLC ....................................S58
ASHRAE Commerical Bldg Energy KOREA
Audits ......................................................74 Ductmate Industries, Inc................ S127 YJP & Valued Media Co., Ltd – YongJin Park
Carlisle HVAC Products ..................S156
Kwang-il Building #905, Dadong-gil 5
Jung-gu, Seoul 04521, Korea
ASHRAE Standard 62.2........................77 Dwyer Instruments .......................... S147 82-2 3789-6888 | Fax: 82-2 3789-8988
Carlo Gavazzi Inc ...............................S62

Aerco International Inc ..................... S10 Carrier Corp ...........................................37 ebm-papst, Inc ...................................S19
Steve Comstock
AHRI ................................................... S115 Carrier Corp .......................................... 39 Greentrol Automation Inc ......................2 (404) 636-8400 |

Aire Technologies..............................S117 Carrier Corp .......................................... 41 Ebtron................................................ Cvr 3 RECRUITMENT ADVERTISING AND REPRINTS
ASHRAE – Greg Martin
(678) 539-1174 |
Addison .............................................. S119 Carrier Corp ...........................................73 Energy Saving Products Ltd.............S18


Advertisers Index/Reader Service Information
Two fast and easy ways to get additional information on products & services in this issue:
Go to to search for products by category or company name. Plus,
link directly to advertisers’ Web sites or request information by e-mail, fax or mail.

Company Page Company Page Company Page Company Page

Entrematic Fans ........................................ S153 Karl Dungs, Inc.......................................... S164 Parker Boiler................................................ S20 SPX Cooling ................................................. S61

Evapco Inc.................................................. S163 Krueger ............................................................ 11 Perma-Pipe ................................................ S164 Sterling Steam Control Products............S133

Evapco, Inc.................................................. S114 LG Electronics.............................................. S27 Petra Engineering ..................................... S167 Taco Inc.............................................. 2nd Cvr-1

FasTest Inc. .................................................. S80 LG Electronics U.S.A. Inc........................... S43 Pittsburgh Corning ..................................... S71 Taco Inc....................................................... S109

Foam Supplies Inc. ..................................... S42 Mestek, Inc. ................................................S149 Portacool LLC .............................................. S60 Titus............................................................... S45

Forty49 Ltd................................................... S23 Metraflex ...................................................... S52 Portacool LLC .................................................60 Titus.............................................................S168

Fuji Electric Corp. of America .................. S24 Milwaukee Electric Tool Corp................... S29 Pottorff...............................................................5 Tjernlund Products Inc ............................ S163

Mitsubishi Electric & Electronics USA Inc... Proco Products, Inc ...................................S102 Topog-E Gasket Co.................................... S101
Fujitsu General America, Inc ...................S145
........................................................................ S47

Fulton Companies, The .............................. S93 Pure Humidifier Co. ...................................S125 Toxalert ......................................................... S20
*Mitsubishi Electric Sales Canada Inc......51

Genesis International................................S135 Raypak, Inc................................................... S89 TPI Corporation ....................................... S2-S3

Miura Boiler............................................... S162

Greenheck........................................................29 Rectorseal Corporation.............................S139 Tranter........................................................... S26

Modular Framing Systems ...................... S157

Regal Beloit Corporation ........................... S79 Triatek ............................................................S17

Greenseam Industries...................................S8 Mostra Convegno Expocomfort...................53

Reliable Controls............................................S4 TSI, Inc.........................................................S122

Harsco Industrial, Patterson-Kelley ........ S81 Multistack, LLC/Desert Aire ..................... S55

Roberts-Gordon........................................... S54
Haydon Corp............................................... S164 Munters Corp............................................... S15 Tuttle & Bailey................................................35

Rotor Source Inc....................................... S101

Heat Pipe Technology................................ S113 Munters Corp.........................................4th Cvr UL LLC......................................................... S151

Rupp Air Management Sys, Div of

Heresite......................................................... S38 Navien ........................................................... S39 Captiveaire ................................................. S105 Viega.............................................................. S65

Hisense ......................................................... S91 Neptronic...................................................... S77 Ruskin ........................................................... S63 Whalen Company, The................................ S16

Hotline Trading ...............................................25 Nexus Valve.................................................. S49 Schebler Company, The ...........................S160 Whalen Company, The...................................23

Hurst Boiler & Welding Co. Inc................ S37 Nexus Valve.................................................S143 Seasons-4, Inc................................................ 10 Wilo USA ....................................................S161

IMI Hydronic Engineering ..............................7 Nortek Global HVAC.................................... S67 Seiho International ..................................... S51 Xylem...........................................................S155

Intellihot Green Technologies Inc ...........S103 Onicon, Inc ................................................... S75 Sheet Metal Connectors, Inc.................... S57 Yaskawa America Inc ................................ S111

JJM Boiler Works..........................................40 Panasonic Appliance AC N.A..................... S73 Shortridge Instruments, Inc ..................... S80 Ziehl-Abegg Inc........................................... S85

Karl Dungs, Inc...........................................S104 Panasonic Eco Solutions of N.A............... S21 Southwire/PSS ...........................................S121 Zoo Fans ........................................................S14



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