Buildings News

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Sept. 29, 2022

First Cohort of Innovators Enter West Gate

West Gate is a program that embeds innovators at NREL and pairs them with national laboratory scientists and capabilities over a period of two years, during which they have prime access to world-class national laboratory capabilities and expertise to significantly advance the development of their clean-energy technologies.

Sept. 21, 2022

Considerations To Achieve a Sustainable U.S. Commercial Building Stock

New study led by the Joint Institute for Strategic Energy Analysis identifies drivers, barriers, and costs of adopting building sensors and controls systems.

Sept. 14, 2022

Buildings Researcher Ensures Energy Models Focus on the People

As a child growing up in suburban Nigeria, Opeoluwa Wonuola Olawale recalls when the portable fan in her room stopped working.

Aug. 25, 2022

Discovering Building Science Career Opportunities

As early-career researchers get ready to head back to campus, their impactful research and unique perspectives will live on with the contributions made to a variety of buildings projects.

Aug. 22, 2022

News Release: R&D 100 Awards Honor NREL Innovation

R&D World magazine today presented NREL with one of its annual R&D 100 Awards for research innovations. The Standard Energy Efficiency Data (SEED) Platform, developed in collaboration with Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, is a data management and analysis tool that helps cities improve their building stock and reduce carbon emissions.

Aug. 22, 2022

Decarbonizing the Building Sector: The Devil's in the Data

In 2019, Washington, D.C., started using the Standard Energy Efficiency Data (SEED) Platform, a web-based software created by NREL and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory to manage data from large groups of buildings and help cities reduce the energy consumption and carbon emissions of their building stock.

Aug. 16, 2022

Visiting the Land of Ice, Whales, and Climate Change

Whaling season had just begun when the housing survey team from NREL's Cold Climate Housing Research Center (CCHRC) showed up in Point Lay this spring.

Aug. 9, 2022

NREL Releases Comprehensive Databases of Local Ordinances for Siting Wind, Solar Energy Projects

State and local zoning laws and ordinances influence how and where wind and solar energy projects can be sited and deployed—which can have a measurable impact on U.S. renewable energy resource potential.

Aug. 8, 2022

Partner Forum Helps Cement Partnership Between NREL, Dallas Fort Worth International Airport

NREL and DFW Airport have committed to working from the ground up at the system level on sustainability, decarbonization, and energy-efficiency overhauls, designing upgrades and implementations that can integrate intelligently across the board.

Aug. 4, 2022

New NREL Dataset Shows Value Building Flexibility Adds to Grid

Researchers at NREL ran hundreds of millions of simulations to gauge the contribution buildings make to gross grid value and created a publicly available dataset for others to use.

July 20, 2022

NREL's Johney Green Appointed Chairman of National GEM Consortium

Johney Green, associate laboratory director for Mechanical and Thermal Engineering Sciences at NREL, was appointed Chairman of The National GEM Consortium Board of Directors on July 18, 2022. GEM is a 45-year-old national nonprofit organization whose vision is to make scientific impact through underrepresented minority STEM talent in the United States.

July 18, 2022

Build Your Team! Solar Decathlon 2023 Design Challenge Opens Registration

Want to design a zero-energy building while still in school? Register now and form a 2023 Design Challenge team to develop sustainable building expertise and tackle real-world problems through the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon® collegiate competition.

July 15, 2022

NREL Set To Receive $5.4 Million in Funding To Research Turning Buildings Into Carbon Storage Structures

NREL has been selected to receive over $5.4 million from the U.S. Department of Energy Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) for the development of technologies that can transform buildings into carbon storage structures.

July 15, 2022

NREL Addresses Energy Challenges for Sustainable Aviation

From sustainable fuels to airport infrastructure analysis to next-gen aircraft, NREL offers solutions for lowering emissions in a sector that is among the most difficult to decarbonize.

July 7, 2022

Solar Decathlon Honored With U.S. Green Building Council Leadership Award

Last month, the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon was honored with the Malcolm Lewis IMPACT! Award during the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) Live conference.

June 7, 2022

Decarbonizing Windows Takes a Big Step Toward Industry Certification

In our world where windowless buildings rarely exist, the subtle significance of windows can easily be lost. Today, windows are responsible for about 10% of energy use in buildings and influence end uses that comprise 40% of building energy use.

June 6, 2022

Solar Decathlon Expands, Bringing Zero-Energy Programs to High School Students and Mid-Career Professionals

At the DOE Solar Decathlon 2022 Competition Event, Secretary of Energy Jennifer Granholm announced the launch of two Solar Decathlon workforce development programs to bring the collegiate competition's sustainable buildings expertise, experience, and mentorship into high school classrooms and architectural studios across the country.

May 31, 2022

Building Experts Needed To Tackle Critical Challenges for Clean Energy Economy

NREL provides technical support to the residential construction industry through its Subject Matter Experts (SME) program.

May 25, 2022

NREL Pledge Curbs Emissions as Part of Larger DOE Initiative

Martin Keller, director of NREL, said he expects the Flatirons Campus near Boulder, Colorado, will reach net zero emissions annually by the end of fiscal year 2023 and the South Table Mountain Campus outside Golden, Colorado, to hit that achievement three years later.

May 4, 2022

Georgia Institute of Technology and The University of Arizona Named DOE Solar Decathlon 2022 Design Challenge Grand Winners

DOE announced the winners of the 20th annual Solar Decathlon, DOE's longest-tenured student competition that has challenged 40,000 students across the world to use the latest technologies to design and build the most sustainable buildings possible.

April 14, 2022

Helping Cities Achieve Just and Equitable Climate Futures Through Residential Energy Retrofits

Already a pioneer in applied building simulations, NREL expanded its partnerships to the city level, utilizing its ResStock™ tool and place-based data to help develop a roadmap for residential energy efficiency in Chicago through the Chicago Advanced Building Construction project.

April 14, 2022

Win-Win: Prize Competitions Drive U.S. Clean Energy Entrepreneurship

NREL customizes competitions for DOE technology offices—solar, water, buildings, geothermal, and others—to meet industry needs. American-Made is a pillar of DOE's activities, incentivizing U.S. entrepreneurs to strengthen American leadership in energy innovation and domestic manufacturing.

April 5, 2022

Solar Decathlon Turns 20!

2022 marks the 20th anniversary of the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon, an international collegiate competition that has helped popularize renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies, while training the clean energy workforce of tomorrow.

March 14, 2022

News Release: Scientists Show Large Impact of Controlling Humidity on Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Greenhouse gas emissions from air conditioners are expected to climb as economic growth drives efforts to control both temperature and humidity, according to an analysis by scientists from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and Xerox PARC.

March 4, 2022

55 Solar Decathlon Design Challenge Teams Advance as Finalists

Fifty-five teams representing 38 universities are advancing as finalists in the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2022 Design Challenge.

Feb. 16, 2022

Addressing Energy Challenges of Housing Health Care Professionals on Remote IHS and U.S. Tribal Lands

The Indian Health Service (IHS) serves 2.6 million American Indians and Alaska Natives annually on a mission to raise physical, mental, and spiritual health. One of the biggest hurdles is staffing.

Feb. 16, 2022

Blok-by-Blok: Lower Emissions and Costs With Net-Zero Energy Modules

A new report from Blokable, the Wells Fargo Innovation Incubator (IN2), and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) details actionable pathways to developing and building net zero energy (NZE) housing without increasing costs yet still reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. IN2 is managed by NREL's Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center.

Feb. 8, 2022

JUMP Into STEM Final Event Exemplifies Commitment to Equity From the Next Generation of Building Science Professionals

The JUMP into STEM Final Event—held virtually Jan. 27 and 28, 2022—showcased holistic solutions from student teams covering three challenge areas: equal access to indoor air quality, resilience for all, and accelerated market adoption.

Feb. 3, 2022

Leader in Buildings Research Receives Prestigious Black Engineer of the Year STEM Award

After more than a decade of leading innovative building research and mentoring dozens of young scientists, Roderick Jackson is being honored with a Black Engineer of the Year Award (BEYA) at the 36th annual BEYA STEM Conference, Feb. 17-19, 2022, in Washington, D.C. He is the first BEYA recipient from NREL.

Feb. 2, 2022

REopt Is Not Lite Anymore

REopt, a free, techno-economic decision support model, helps users optimize energy systems for buildings, campuses, communities, and microgrids. Once called REopt Lite, the REopt tool is dropping the "Lite" in 2022 to better reflect its true status as a heavy-hitting and comprehensive optimization tool.

Jan. 18, 2022

REopt Targets Emissions for Tomorrow's Cleaner, Healthier Built Environment

The REopt® web tool is a techno-economic decision support platform used by researchers to optimize energy systems for buildings, campuses, communities, microgrids, and more, helping users determine the optimal size and combination of energy systems to maximize cost savings while meeting resilience or energy performance goals.

Jan. 5, 2022

Python Opens Up New Applications for EnergyPlus Building Energy Simulation

Buildings account for more than 40% of U.S. energy use and 70% of U.S. electricity use. Reducing that consumption and "shaping" it to match renewable generation requires us to design and operate buildings to be more efficient, flexible, and responsive. To do that, we must be able to better predict and model building energy use.

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