End-Use Load Profiles for the U.S. Building Stock

NREL and its research partners are collaborating on a multiyear study to develop a database of end-use load profiles representing all major end uses, building types, and climate regions in the U.S. commercial and residential building stock.

End-use load profiles are critically important to understanding the time-sensitive value of energy efficiency, demand response, and other distributed energy resources. This foundational data set will help electric utilities, grid operators, manufacturers, government entities, and research organizations make critical decisions about prioritizing research and development, utility resource and distribution system planning, and state and local energy planning and regulation.

The team, which includes Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Argonne National Laboratory, is using an innovative approach that benefits from the reach, cost-effectiveness, and granularity of data-driven and physics-based building stock modeling using the ResStock™ and ComStock™ capabilities developed by NREL for the U.S. Department of Energy. These stock models will be informed by and validated against the best-available ground-truth data—from submetering studies, statistical disaggregation of whole-building interval meter data, and other emerging data sources. The resulting public database will be generated using the stock models and will not contain the ground-truth data used to develop and calibrate the models.

A graphic showing the workflow for this multiyear project. Beginning with the identification of data gaps for high-priority use cases and collecting the best available ground truth data, the workflow then moves to data analysis. Data analysis feeds into two separate paths: 1) updated model inputs, which moves into stochastic occupant behavior models; and 2) model validation and calibration, which moves into uncertainty quantification. The workflow centers around the ResStock and ComStock buildings stock modeling tools. The work results in a foundational dataset of end-use load profiles for the U.S. building stock, as well as calibrated models for evaluating the impact of future scenarios and technologies.

This multiyear project centers around NREL’s building stock modeling tools, resulting in a foundational data set of end-use load profiles for the U.S. building stock, as well as calibrated models for evaluating the impact of future scenarios and technologies.

Project Outcomes

The three-year project, funded by the U.S. Department of Energy Building Technologies Office, will result in:

  • Validated end-use load profiles for the U.S. building stock at both aggregate and individual building scales, representing all major end uses, building types, and climate regions in the U.S. building stock
  • Calibrated open-source building stock end-use models with the ability to estimate energy efficiency and demand response savings profiles for existing and emerging technologies
  • Documentation of load profile use cases, critical gaps, model methodology, and user guide.

A technical report, End-Use Load Profiles for the U.S. Building Stock: Market Needs, Use Cases, and Data Gaps, highlights first-year project accomplishments including the formation of a technical advisory group, identification of market needs and data gaps, and next steps to verify the accuracy of calibrated model outputs. View a webinar to learn more about the project's first year.

Upon the project’s conclusion, the publicly available data set will be released and presented during a public webinar in October 2021, followed by the publication of a Methodology and Results report and an Applications and Opportunities report. Sign up below to be notified about the webinar and data set release.

Technical Advisory Group

A technical advisory group has been established to ensure that the direction and outcomes of the work are aligned with market needs. The technical advisory group includes roughly 50 representatives from organizations that are likely to use the resulting load profiles in their work, including utility companies, utility program implementers, grid operators, consultancies, research centers, state regulatory agencies, and regional energy efficiency organizations. 

Download Technical Advisory Group Presentations

Jan. 28, 2021

Sept. 22, 2020

May 26, 2020

March 5, 2020

Dec. 17, 2019

June 18, 2019

March 5, 2019

Nov. 27, 2018

Data-Sharing Partners

A growing number of partners are sharing data with NREL researchers for this project's validation effort. Access to data sources for a range of regions and building types ensures the resulting data set is valuable to stakeholders.

Data sources of interest include:

  • Circuit-level or appliance submeter data
  • Whole-building meter data (hourly or subhourly interval advanced metering infrastructure data)
  • Utility customer class load shape (e.g., residential, small commercial)
  • Home energy monitor or building automation system data
  • Connected thermostat data
  • Other occupancy-related data.

The data can be anonymous, will not be shared publicly, and will be used to validate/calibrate building stock simulation models for this project only. NREL has a history of working with sensitive utility data and can work with companies to ensure any data security and privacy requirements are met.

If you have data or suggestions for potential sources of data that may be useful for this project, please contact us.

Partner with Us

Representatives from data-sharing partner organizations are welcome to serve on our technical advisory group, providing feedback on project direction and helping ensure that the results are as useful as possible. Note that we recognize research partner companies on our website and in project reports, as requested.


For more information on this end-use load profiles project, contact Eric Wilson or Natalie Mims Frick.

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