In October, ASHRAE announced the winners of their 2014 competition for energy efficient HVAC systems. As reported by Energy Manager Today, the competitors had to design a HVAC system for a two-story office building in New York City with a research and development facility.
HVAC Design Calculations: University of Central Florida
First place was awarded to the University of Central Florida in Orlando in the HVAC Design Calculations category. The Florida team designed a high-efficiency HVAC system with variable refrigerant flow (VRF) systems with simultaneous heating and cooling and dedicated outdoor air systems (DOAS) with energy recovery. Other equipment included air valves for lab areas and high-efficiency particulate absorption filters and exhaust fans. The $570,203 system incorporated efficiency, health and safety, comfort, functionality, longevity, flexibility and maintainability with a low life cycle cost.
HVAC System Selection: Kansas State University
The top prize for the HVAC System Selection category went to Kansas State University. This entry included a ground source heat pump (GSHP) system in which water is pumped through vertical piping in the ground. It provides a heat source and heat sink for the heat pumps. The main water loop serves the heat pumps and DOAS, allowing heat transfer between spaces to maximize energy efficiency. The system is low-cost, reliable, flexible, maintainable and sustainable, and the energy savings are immense.
Integrated Sustainable Building Design: Montana State University
The winning entry in the Integrated Sustainable Building Design category went to Montana State University in Bozeman. This system implemented multiple HVAC systems with high efficiencies, using the nearby river as a heat exchanger. Although this entry has a more costly front end price tag, it is more economical over the life span of the building. This design provided a 70 percent reduction in energy consumption and it is estmated that it will pay for itself in 12 years. Over the span of four decades the building will generate cost savings of almost one million dollars.
Applied engineering Challenge: California Polytechnic State University
First place in the Applied Engineering Challenge went to California Polytechnic State University in San Luis Obispo. This award is for the design of a small, portable air conditioner that must be affordable, maintainable and effective in the local cultural environment. The winning system involves a series of measures that a family living in Mexico City can take to improve the indoor air quality in their house.
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