cove.tool has pre-created templates for 8 building types but also allows advanced users to create custom template that fits the project's specific conditions. Users also have the ability to validate any value assumptions with the cove.tool technical team using the Live Chat Box feature, found on the bottom left hand corner of the web app.
First step is selecting an existing building type template. Building Type is a factor used in energy modeling software to differentiate commercial buildings into categories of buildings' whose users share similar energy usage data. The practical knowledge of knowing one’s building use type is important to recognize the particularities of type specific energy consumption and expenditure. The key parameters which impacts the Energy Use Intensity (EUI) include Mechanical Ventilation Supply Air Flow Rate (CFM), Lighting Power Density (LPD), Equipment Power Density (EPD), Occupancy Schedule, HVAC System Type, Envelope Properties, Domestic Hot Water Demand, Air Changes per Hour (ACH), etc. This article discusses the fundamentally different engineering input values to create Fire Station Template.
Set the ‘Project Name’ as intended building use template and select the ‘Building Type’ that closely resembles to the intended use. Also, check the box below the Energy Code to make the project a template for firm wide use (highlighted in red in the image below). The energy code selected for the Fire Station is 2018 Washington State Energy Code (Customized ASHRAE 2016) for this example. The Building type Office closely resembles the occupancy, equipment load and ventilation required for Fire Station building.
Learning more about each existing system and how they are identified/ differentiated is key to creating a new template. After selecting a building type, complete your project and geometry pages as described here. The next key step occurs in the baseline energy tab.
Modify the Building Type name in 'Baseline Energy' page so that it'll be easier to understand that the project has been converted to custom template. The envelope inputs are customized based on the 2018 Washington State Energy Code.
Adjust the Mechanical Ventilation Supply Air Flow Rate (CFM) accordingly. The supply air flow rate for Fire Station is set at 10 CFM/person for people outdoor air rate and 0.12 CFM/ft2 for area outdoor air rate based on the ASHRAE 62.1 comparative building type.
Adjust the Lighting Power Density according to the use type. The Lighting Power Density (LPD) maximum allowable value (0.54 W/ft2) is taken from 2018 Washington State Energy Code for Fire Station building type.
Adjust the Equipment Power Density (EPD) according to the use type. The Equipment Power Density (EPD) acceptable value (0.25 W/ft2) is taken from ASHRAE 90.1 User’s Manual Version 2013.
Edit the 2030 building type to match with the modeled building and hit 'recalculate' to get accurate 2030 baseline EUI value.
Adjust other engineering inputs such as occupancy schedules, occupant density, heating/cooling set-points etc. according to the building type and hit 'recalculate' to include that in analysis. For this example, the occupancy hours, infiltration, pump related inputs have been modified to reflect the fire station.
Other inputs can be edited via engineering inputs tab to make the customized template. It is interesting to note that the created template can be cloned and modified further by different user.
Also, when the Step 2 is followed, cove.tool will automatically update all name tags in the report for the users.
Find a list of all custom building type articles here.