eLearning Software Platform









Building Performance Expertise

• Ashrea 90.1


High performance building design (HPBD)

Project Overview

Using the Pacific Northwest National Lab’s (PNNL) ASHRAE 90.1–2004 and –2010 EnergyPlus reference models of non-residential buildings as a starting point, an open-source set of highly parameterized generic-building template models and scripts are under development.


The parameterized models will allow researchers, designers, consultants, building portfolio managers and policy analysts to consider the energy savings potentials of particular efficiency measures in different climates, relative to one of a set of benchmark configurations.


All US climate zones and one Canadian climate zone, along with three climate types (Humid, Dry, and Marine), are accounted for through 15 representative cities. In addition to the ASHRAE 90.1-2004 and ASHRAE 90.1-2010 benchmark configurations, two high-performance benchmarks are also under development: (EP) “Enhanced Performance”, with 50% better energy performance than ASHRAE 90.1-2004; and (HP) “High Performance”, with the goal of reaching efficiency levels that make a Net Zero Energy Building plausible.


EnergyPlus simulation results: EUI per climate zone and simulation run



EnergyPlus Office Building Models

The template EnergyPlus models make extensive use of the EnergyPlus macro language. The scripts are in Python. The overall system may be easily wrapped into a user interface, or may be used to automatically generate and evaluate a large number of parametric modifications. A representative medium office building with multiple perimeter and core HVAC zones was used as the starting model.


• Building aspect ratio
• Window-to-wall ratio (WWR)
• Roof insulation level
• Wall insulation level
• Infiltration level
• Fenestration properties (U-factor, solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC), visible transmission (Tvis)
• Solar shading
• Daylighting controls
• Percent of building floor area covered
• Perimeter zone depth
• Percent of lighting energy reduction


Reference Building (medium office building with multiple perimeter and core HVAC zones)