Commercial Prototype Building Models

The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) supports the development of commercial building energy codes and standards by participating in review processes and providing analyses that are available for public review and use.

To calculate the impact of ASHRAE Standard 90.1, researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) created a suite of 16 prototype buildings covering 80% of the commercial building floor area in the United States for new construction, including both commercial buildings and mid- to high-rise buildings. These prototype buildings—derived from DOE's Commercial Reference Building Models—cover all the reference building types except supermarkets, and also add a new building prototype representing high-rise apartment buildings. As ASHRAE Standard 90.1 evolved, PNNL also made substantial modifications to the commercial reference building models, with extensive inputs from ASHRAE 90.1 Standing Standards Project Committee members and other building industry experts.

The prototype models include the 16 building types in 17 climate locations for three editions of ASHRAE Standard 90.1 (90.1-2004, 90.1-2007 and 90.1-2010). This combination leads to a set of 816 building models (in EnergyPlus™ Version 6.0).

Table 1 contains a scorecard for each prototype building. The scorecard is a spreadsheet (Microsoft® Excel®, .xls, format) that summarizes the building descriptions, thermal zone internal loads, schedules, and other key modeling input information. The prototype models for all three editions of ASHRAE Standard 90.1 are also available for download (compressed, .zip, format). Each .zip file includes EnergyPlus model input files (.idf) and corresponding output files (.html) in all 17 climate locations.

Downloads

Files can be downloaded either as a complete package, containing all building types, or by individual building type (see Table 1), either by specific ASHRAE Standard 90.1 edition or as a complete set.

Table 1. Individual Prototype Building Models
Building Type Complete Set Scorecard 90.1-2004 90.1-2007 90.1-2010
Small Office ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Medium Office ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Large Office ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Stand-alone Retail ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Strip Mall ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Primary School ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Secondary School ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Outpatient Healthcare ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Hospital ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Small Hotel ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Large Hotel ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Warehouse (non-refrigerated) ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Quick Service Restaurant ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Full Service Restaurant ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
Mid-rise Apartment ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
High-rise Apartment ZIP XLS ZIP ZIP ZIP
All Building Types ZIP (88.5MB) ZIP ZIP ZIP ZIP

The associated EnergyPlus TMY2 weather files for the 17 climate locations are available for download in Table 2.

Table 2. TMY2 Weather Files
Climate Zone Weather Data
1A Miami EPW
1B Riyadh EPW
2A Houston EPW
2B Phoenix EPW
3A Memphis EPW
3B El Paso EPW
3C San Francisco EPW
4A Baltimore EPW
4B Albuquerque EPW
4C Salem EPW
5A Chicago EPW
5B Boise EPW
5C Vancouver EPW
6A Burlington EPW
6B Helena EPW
7 Duluth EPW
8 Fairbanks EPW
All Climate Zones ZIP

The final analysis of the prototype building models indicated that without plug loads in the energy percentage saving calculations, site energy savings are 32.7%, and energy cost savings are 29.5%, between the 2010 and 2004 editions of ASHRAE Standard 90.1. When plug loads are included, the site energy savings are estimated at 25.6%, and energy cost savings at 23.2%. A summary for the national-weighted energy savings is also available for download.

Detailed model descriptions are presented in the PNNL report "Achieving 30% Goal: Energy and Cost Saving Analysis of ASHRAE/IES Standard 90.1-2010." This report documents the approach, methodology, and modeling strategy used to develop the prototype models, and the energy and cost saving analysis results, as well as answering most questions regarding the ASHRAE Standard 90.1 prototype models. For questions not covered in the report, or to report discrepancies found in the models and report, please contact the Building Energy Codes Program help desk.

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