OCHRE: Object-Oriented Controllable High-Resolution Residential Energy Model

OCHRE logo

Emerging technologies in residential buildings are changing the nature of energy consumption and creating opportunities for demand flexibility. To study these opportunities, NREL has created the Object-oriented Controllable High-resolution Residential Energy (OCHRE™) model.

Residential buildings are seeing growth in demand-side technologies; rooftop solar, electric vehicles, and energy storage systems; and smart, energy-efficient heat pumps. Many of these devices are “smart” and equipped with cloud-connected controllers that enable advanced control. OCHRE can simulate new control opportunities at scale and identify potential grid benefits and impacts. OCHRE uses detailed thermal and electrical modeling of residential end uses and devices and integrates with grid simulators and device controllers.

Researchers at NREL have used OCHRE to perform high-resolution time-series cosimulation of thousands of buildings connected to the grid simultaneously, enabling the control and aggregation of tens of thousands of customer distributed energy resources and end-use devices. OCHRE allows NREL to answer pressing questions about the impacts of emerging demand-side technologies on the grid, develop control solutions to enable the integration of renewable resources, and quantify the opportunities for demand-side provision of grid-services.


  • Model end-use loads and building-sited distributed energy resources such as smart HVAC equipment and thermostats, water heaters, electric vehicles, rooftop solar, and energy storage
  • Model the building thermal envelope and interactions between electrical and thermal loads at high resolution
  • Examine the impacts of novel control strategies on building energy consumption and occupant comfort
  • Perform scalable building-grid cosimulation with a diverse sample of residential buildings
  • Leverage capabilities from NREL's established modeling tools, including EnergyPlus™, BEopt™, ResStock™, SAM, and EVI-Pro


OCHRE: The Object-oriented, Controllable, High-resolution Residential Energy Model for Dynamic Integration StudiesApplied Energy (2021)

Co-Simulation of Transactive Energy Markets: A Framework for Market Testing and Evaluation, International Journal of Electrical Power and Energy Systems (2021)

Incorporating Residential Smart Electric Vehicle Charging in Home Energy Management Systems, IEEE Green Technologies Conference (2021)


Killian McKenna

Grid Integration Lead


Jeff Maguire

Building Modeling Lead