Field Evaluation of Very High Efficiency Dedicated Outdoor Air Systems Finds Persistence of Savings


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Researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) evaluated the long-term performance of Very High Efficiency (VHE) Dedicated Outdoor Air Systems (DOASs) installed in eight buildings.

The eight buildings had participated in field evaluation studies sponsored by the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (NEEA) and the Institute for Market Transformation (IMT) from 2015 to 2020 (Pratt et al. 2022). PNNL found that the sites continued to see high energy savings (48%) and were able to decarbonize heating systems while reducing electric load.

PNNL’s study resulted in a technical report issued in December 2023 that outlines energy performance findings from the previous studies and compares them to the systems’ performance in 2023. In addition, it evaluates both Indoor Environmental Quality (IEQ) as perceived by occupants pre- and post-system conversion, and building operator feedback pre- and post-conversion.

Findings related to both the long-term persistence of energy savings and occupant and building operator feedback are important considerations for building owners and managers who may be interested in installing VHE DOASs. The PNNL results align strongly with the original evaluations.

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