Kulkarni, Aditya Arun (2012-02). Impact of Continuous Commissioning(R) on the Energy Star(R) Rating of Hospitals and Office Buildings. Master's Thesis.
Re-commissioning, retro-commissioning, Continuous Commissioning(R) (CC(R)) are examples of successful systematic processes implemented in buildings to reduce overall building energy consumption, and improve efficiency of systems and their operations and control. The impact of the Continuous Commissioning(R) Process on the Energy Star(R) Rating (ESR) of office buildings and hospitals is examined in this thesis. The improvement in performance of a building, and subsequently its ESR, is found to be influenced by its initial ESR, while its location has no impact on improvement. The improvement in ESR is observed to be almost linearly proportional to the percentage of energy saved. For 10% - 20% reductions in energy use typical of the CC(R) process, the ESR is increased by 10-19 ESR ranks for office buildings and by 13 - 26 ESR ranks for hospitals. The CC(R) process is found to potentially enable an office building of average initial ESR of 62 and a hospital of average initial ESR of 55, located anywhere in the US, to be eligible to achieve ESR of 75 and consequently the Energy Star recognition. The improvement of ESR is a function of the initial ESR and the building type; hence it is observed to be different for hospitals and office buildings in the study. For hospital and office building models occupying 100,000 ft2 of floor area each, a difference of about 30% in the ESR improvement (greater for hospitals) is observed. The energy intensities may be different for buildings with same ESRs that have different location and/or type. An averaged maximum difference of energy intensity of approximately 10% is observed to exist for identical buildings and of the same type but located at different locations. Hospitals are observed to be more than twice as energy intensive as office buildings for the same location and equal ESRs. ESR plotted against % energy savings at site reveals the stepped nature of ESR system. At specific initial ESR and corresponding % savings a reduction of up to approximately 1% for office buildings and up to 1.5% for hospitals does not change the respective ESRs for the model set of buildings in the study.