Paper Conference

Proceedings of eSim 2016: 9th Conference of IBPSA-Canada


Energy flow analysis on a multi-zonal building scale using Sankey diagrams

Aly Abdelalim, Zixiao Shi, William O’Brien

Abstract: Modern commercial buildings have complex mechanical systems and heat transfer paths, and their performance is typically difficult to visualize. Current data availability and visualization tools do not lend themselves well to identifying inefficiencies and possible solutions. Sankey diagrams have been found to be useful tool in energy management and performance improvement. However, there are limited existing applications on the building level. This paper proposes a method to estimate and visualize energy flow on the building level. The objective is to demonstrate the applicability of Sankey diagrams to identify opportunities for energy savings. The proposed methodology is then applied to an 8,000 m² multi-zone Canadian university building. Data for resource consumption were obtained from meters and sensors installed in the building. While building energy performance data were obtained from a calibrated building performance simulation (BPS) model of the building to understand the interrelated variables that affect building performance. The outcome of this work is to help identify and quantify the significant measured and unmeasured energy flows.
Pages: 284 - 294