Our very own Michele Sagehorn recently had the opportunity to present with one of our top clients Chris Weyandt of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory as part of the Virtual 2020 BCxA Conference. The event, which is still available for viewing and continuing education credits, was held on August 24th and included several experts from the world of building commissioning and operations.

Their presentation was titled: “Let’s Bend the Curve:  New Strategies to Maximize Ongoing Building Performance” and focused on the recently completed Integrative Genomics Building (or IGB) on the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory campus.

The IGB laboratory is an example of a project helping the University of California (UC) meet its aggressive sustainability goals, including “2025 carbon neutrality”. Through not only its efficient design, the site also is a leader in planning and prioritizing ongoing operational performance. The IGB is an all-electric 77,000 sf facility consisting of wet/dry laboratories and office spaces. Key highlights of the design include:

  • Completely eliminated onsite carbon emissions from space and water heating.
  • Integrative passive design strategies in the orientation, massing, and façade.
  • Innovative HVAC systems, including heat pumps, heat recovery, radiant floors, chilled beams.
  • Integrated HVAC-lighting occupancy controls and plug load controls.

With an innovative design and green HVAC systems one would expect an immediate impact on operational energy compared to other new buildings.  However, adding technology to the building system does not automatically result in operational success.  In fact, high performance buildings often increase the overall complexity in operations at first and require integration of many systems which can increase the amount of resources in time and energy required. Commissioning coupled with “Ongoing Commissioning” is a path to optimize and improving a building be able to manage energy consumption during its entire life cycle and ideally keep things simple. It is the key to maximizing innovative designs to be able to realize long-term benefits. Using the IGB as a case study, this presentation discusses new commissioning challenges in all-electric buildings and introduces the need for a new management approach to operating buildings through an ongoing process to resolve operating problems, improve comfort, optimize energy use, and identify future retrofit opportunities.  The IGB serves as an example of a scalable solution for UC and other buildings to “Bend The Curve” on climate change.

About the BCxA Conference

The 2020 BCxA Annual Conference is a premiere annual event full of training, memorable speakers, and presentations. This year’s conference was held entirely online and hosted 35+ speakers covering industry topics and trends. The Conference had five tracks delivered every Monday in August. The tracks are now available with the option to purchase, view and receive up to 25 continuing education credits. (See the link below)

Tracks Now Available at the Links Below

Michele Sagehorn, CEM, LEED AP | Red Car Analytics   Michele Sagehorn has worked for over 15 years on high performance buildings, including as a leading commissioning agent. She holds a B.S. in Aerospace Engineering and began her career as a quality assurance engineer in the automotive industry. As a commissioning agent, she brings a standard of care that is unique to the built environment. Her experience spans numerous project types, including leadership on eight ZNE and twelve carbon-neutral buildings. In 2018, Michele and her colleagues launched Red Car Analytics, a company dedicated to engaging clients in building and operating high performance buildings through analytics.

Chris Weyandt, Energy Management Engineer, LBNL   Chris Weyandt leads an ongoing commissioning team aimed at improving the energy performance of Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory facilities. He draws on his background in facility maintenance, information technology, and control systems to develop innovative solutions for the modernization and optimization of buildings. He holds a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Minnesota, is a licensed Professional Controls Systems Engineer, and is a graduate student in Data Science at UC Berkeley.