Three keys to successful energy recovery

Consider these energy recovery options for a nonresidential building.

By Daniel Cohen and Jay F. Ramirez, Environmental Systems Design August 29, 2014

When evaluating energy recovery options for a facility, there are three key items to consider:

1. Understand the systems and internal processes of the existing facility or design intent. Take these processes to the model and develop a unique load profile for the facility.

2. Overlay the other HVAC systems in the load profile and find opportunities where energy can be shared. Also, review the processes to see what other forms of recoverable energy are available and try to pair them with the technologies that are available.

3. Understand the utility rate structure the customer is under so the return on investment embraces what the customer is paying for, as some of these technologies can help with peak shaving versus energy reduction. This can have more of a significant impact than just energy reduction, which is why the heating and cooling load profile is so important, both annually and on a 24-hour/day basis.

Daniel Cohen is a senior associate and mechanical engineer with Environmental Systems Design. He specializes in high-efficiency buildings, central plants, and analysis and building modeling. Jay F. Ramirez is a senior vice president and the practice leader for the health, science, and education market sectors at Environmental Systems Design with 28 years of experience in high-tech facilities including R&D, laboratory, manufacturing, and healthcare.