Paper Conference

Proceedings of eSim 2022: 12th Conference of IBPSA-Canada


Data-driven evaluations of building operational settings: Lessons learned from the development of a user-focused tool

Connor Brackley 1, Mohamed M. Ouf 1, William O’Brien 2
1 Department of Building, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Concordia University
2 Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Carleton University

Abstract: Building automation systems have created opportunities for energy saving in commercial buildings; however, these systems are typically not well designed for data analysis. To respond to this, tools for continuously monitoring and analysing building data are becoming increasingly popular. This work proposes a data-driven method to estimate the energy associated with equipment schedules; packaged into an interactive tool. We discuss this tool’s role in a building operators’ workflow, focusing on prioritizing short interaction time, metric transparency, and robust outputs. When applied to a case study office building, we found that even minor adjustments to equipment schedules provide a non-trivial effect on energy. For example, extending the weekday occupied mode operation from 5 pm to 8 pm would lead to an estimated 5% increase in annual energy use compared to current practices. This tool could be rapidly applied to building portfolios to understand how widespread changes to operation affect energy use.
Keywords: Building Operation, Energy, Data-driven, User-focused, Interface design