Toward Building Energy Reduction Through Solar Energy Systems Retrofit Options: An Equest Model

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Office buildings are responsible for a great portion of total energy consumption. In this study, solar system based retrofitting measures such as daylighting control system (DCS), Trombe wall (TW) and photovoltaic (PV) systems are modeled to an office building located in Dayton, Ohio, United States. An energy modeling tool, eQuest is utilized to analyze the economic and environmental impacts of the proposed single retrofitting measures along with the combined measure to identify the optimized building energy reduction opportunity. Compared to the baseline energy consumption, adopting single energy efficiency measures such as PV, DCS, TW, and overhangs/fins to windows results in about 25, 10, 9, 1 percentages of energy reduction respectively. In terms of economic perspectives, overhang and fins provide the best simply payback time around 1 year. Other solar system based retrofitting measures such as TW, DCS and PV can provide economic simple payback with 1.5, 2.5, and 12 years respectively. PV turned out to be the most costly options although it provides the largest energy savings which lead to the largest CO2 reductions. Adopting the combined system along with 50 kW photovoltaic array to the rooftop results in 45 percent office building energy reduction.

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