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GSBN:Re: Mechanical Systems in Commercial SB building


The added insulation afforded by the SB walls will account for only the very smallest portion of the potential overall energy savings in a well-designed, energy-efficeint building. (ie typically in retail buildings, even here in MooseLand, the largest load comes from lighting ,hence the importance of a good daylighting strategy in reducing overall energy consumption) with the greatest potential energy savings being provided by intelligently-designed mechanical and electrical systems as is illustrated by the numbers below, based on a case study here in Ottawa of a retail building with a small SB component.

( cut and pasted from

http://oee.nrcan.gc.ca/newbuildings/buildings/casestudies-etudesdecas/mec_performance.cfm?PrintView=N&Text=N%20 )

Energy Savings ($)

Exterior sunshades

Extra wall insulation

Extra roof insulation

Upgrades to glazing units

Energy management system

Upgrades to mechanical equipment

Upgrades to electrical equipment

$ 278,000

So, based on the above example, if the "cadillac system" is one which is intelligently designed (and seemingly complicated to us non-mechenginoidal sorts) , as opposed to merely being oversized, the energy savings (and resultant short payback period) may in fact, justify the initial incremental cost.

OTOH, if the system is merely oversized "just to be on the safe side" (as happens too often in lazy mech eng "design") and has all the latest bells and knerpwhistles just to be kewl , it could of course, result in an energy penalty, not to mention being a needless waste of resources (both physical and monetary) and a PITA to live with. Similarly, a "simple" (read: "cheap") design which fails to perform to rigorous EE/health standards can also have the same problems and may not be inexpensive at all, in the long run.

Surely, the mechanical engineer should be able to provide some numbers for savings based on projected performance to explain the rationale for and justify her more costly/complicated design ?

 --- * ---
Robert W. Tom
Kanata, Ontario, Canada

please visit:  http://www.theHungerSite.com daily


I have a client who is trying to get his mechanical engineers to understand
the level of energy efficiency of a bale building, while also attempting to
help them see the world outside of their small boxes.  He wants to simplify
his mechanical systems, and they have designed him a cadillac system.  The
project is a natural food store in Montana and we are looking for examples
of not-too-complicated systems placed in commercial bale structures.  Can
anyone help with this one?  Any example projects come to  mind?

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