In order to help architects more accurately predict the energy consumption in their design projects, the American Institute of Architects (AIA) has put together An Architect’s Guide to Integrating Energy Modeling in the Design Process. The guide is a step-by-step map to predicting (and thus reducing) the energy usage of buildings.
Written and assembled by a committee of architects, sustainability experts, and government building science officials, as well as AIA staff, the guide surveys a wide swath of the building design and construction industry to present baseline best practices for empirically evaluating the energy performance of buildings. Beyond defining and making a case for energy modeling, this primer walks readers through different types of energy modeling and the individual tools and software available for it. As a relatively new technical specialty, the guide also discusses how to bring energy modeling to other building team members, like engineers, and most important of all—to clients. From initial exploratory design concepts to code compliance and ongoing energy maintenance, this manual covers the entire spectrum of design and building.
“Energy modeling is fast becoming a more useful means to better inform major design decisions early and often throughout the building design process. It can provide a roadmap to help practitioners lead their clients toward energy efficiency goals, green code compliance and building certification programs,” said AIA President, Jeff Potter, FAIA. “It is imperative for the entire design and construction industry to be cognizant of the energy use implication buildings have, in terms of limited resources, climate change, and rising utility costs. This guide provides the energy modeling fundamentals that can serve the client’s high expectations and ultimately reduce energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions.”