DOE, PNNL Release Report on Cutting Energy Use in Half in Commercial Buildings
October 08, 2010
Report details strategies to save energy in quick-service restaurants
The U.S. Department of Energy and its Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) have released a technical report that provides recommendations on how to achieve up to 50% energy savings in quick-service restaurants. PNNL, with help from industry collaborators and under the direction of DOE's Building Technologies Program, performed the research, analysis, and documentation that support DOE's goal of significantly improving the energy efficiency of new and existing commercial buildings across the United States.
Technical Support Document: 50% Energy Savings for Quick-Service Restaurants details a package of energy-efficiency measures that cut energy use in quick-service restaurants by up to 50% compared to a baseline standard in less than five years. The 50% goal involves reducing site energy usage in all eight U.S. climate zones, relative to buildings constructed to meet minimal code-compliant requirements of ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2004.
For the analysis, PNNL developed a 2,500-square-foot building model that was based on actual floor plans in prototypical quick-service restaurant design. PNNL used EnergyPlus, an energy simulation program, to determine the energy savings provided by the energy-efficiency measures. The prototype building was analyzed in the eight U.S. climate zones, which were further divided into 16 representative climate cities. The report establishes the baseline energy use by end-use category in a typical quick-service restaurant and provides the site energy and energy cost savings from implementation of the recommended measures. The report also provides an estimate of the incremental first costs and simple payback years for an energy-efficient quick-service restaurant in various climate locations.
The following energy-efficiency measures helped researchers reach the energy-savings target:
- Ultra-efficient cooking appliances resulted in reduced kitchen exhaust air flow
- An optimized HVAC system configuration was used to better utilize a dedicated outdoor air system and runaround coil loop heat recovery
- Efficient exterior and interior lighting were used around the building and dimming controls were used in the dining room
- Enhanced insulation, cool roofs, and high-performance window glazing improved the building envelope.
The 50% savings report will provide the basis for the next series of Advanced Energy Design Guides (AEDGs), which are "how-to" guides that show architects, engineers, and building designers how to achieve above-code exemplary energy performance for buildings using existing technologies available today. The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) works in collaboration with DOE, the American Institute of Architects, the Illuminating Engineering Society, and the U.S. Green Building Council to develop and publish AEDGs. These are available for free public download.
In addition to the ASHRAE design guides, the results of these studies will be shared with DOE's Commercial Building Energy Alliances and the Commercial Building Partnerships. These groups are public-private collaborations aimed at developing energy-efficient technologies and practices and sharing the information with commercial building owners and operators around the United States.
DOE, with its national laboratories, commissions these technical support documents (TSDs), to describe the assumptions, methodologies, and analyses used to achieve certain levels of energy performance. DOE has published documents in several categories for commercial buildings. To view previous TSDs, search the publications database.
The mission of the Building Technologies Program (BTP) is to develop technologies, techniques, and tools for making buildings more energy efficient, productive, and affordable. BTP focuses on improving commercial and residential building components, energy modeling tools, building energy codes, and appliance standards. For more information, visit the Building Technologies Program Web site.