Monday, December 27, 2010

Net-Zero Energy

Zeroing In on Net-Zero Energy

December 2010 - Given its mission of developing renewable energy and energy-efficient technologies, it isn’t so surprising that the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), in Golden, Colorado, would want an ultra-high-performance building for the more than 800 staff members it planned to move from leased office space to its research campus at the base of South Table Mountain. The building, the 220,000-square-foot Research Support Facility, or RSF, which opened in June, is designed to be just that. If it performs as intended, the RSF will consume only 35 kBtu per square foot annually, even taking into account the power requirements for a data center that serves all 2,200 NREL employees. This energy use intensity (a measurement of the amount of energy consumed by a building relative to its size) is about 50 percent less than that for one that complies with the 2004 version of the ASHRAE 90.1 standard. {continued}

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