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Case study of integrated decision-making for deep energy-efficient retrofits

Pelin Gultekin (Department of Architectural Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania, USA)
Chimay J. Anumba (Department of Architectural Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania, USA)
Robert M. Leicht (Department of Architectural Engineering, The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania, USA)

International Journal of Energy Sector Management

ISSN: 1750-6220

Article publication date: 28 October 2014

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to focus on the decision-making process of integrated system design. Buildings can benefit from different system integration working toward the unified goal of providing the needed conditions and improving the comfort level of occupants. It is important to engage all system needs and priorities in the design by keeping goal into consideration. Even though there is vast potential in the coordination of system design decisions, there is a need to increase the transparency of the decision-making process by developing methods to incorporate multi-dimensional design attributes.

Design/methodology/approach

This is achieved by considering all system design priorities with respect to decision attributes, as well as the inter-system inputs based on information and knowledge. Data were collected through interviews, collaboration meetings and design document reviews, which helped to facilitate triangulation.

Findings

This paper presents the findings of a case study of deep retrofit design process that seeks to reduce energy consumption through integrated system decisions with several system combinations. In addition, such design decisions highlighted the fact that the values need to be flexible at the system level.

Research limitations/implications

This paper presents an in-depth analysis of a single case study. Multiple case studies are being investigated for the future of this research.

Practical implications

This paper presents the methods used for integrated design process priorities that will enable design teams to make decisions that lead to improved energy performance in retrofit projects.

Originality/value

The case study building in this paper is a showcase building with cutting edge technologies and techniques, as well as a scalable and collaborative design process. It is an example of a best-in-class retrofit process designed through whole building design principles within the target budget. The paper demonstrates system design selection criteria that are embraced by value prioritization.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The authors wish to thank Christopher Conroy, from CJL Engineering for providing related design information and contacts that helped to improve the delineation of the decision-making processes of the EIC project. The authors would also like to acknowledge Penn State’s Office of Physical Plant (OPP) for funding this project.

Citation

Gultekin, P., J. Anumba, C. and M. Leicht, R. (2014), "Case study of integrated decision-making for deep energy-efficient retrofits", International Journal of Energy Sector Management, Vol. 8 No. 4, pp. 434-455. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJESM-12-2013-0002

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2014, Emerald Group Publishing Limited