One of the biggest advantages that cove.tool has over its competitors is automation. When setting a project's location, the tool automatically populates the project with local weather data, regionally adopted energy code information, localized cost and carbon factors, and more. This article will discuss the key automation done to populate the most relevant standards to make our platform compatible with projects in United Kingdom.
In UK, cove.tool is configured to utilize the UK NCM (United Kingdom National Calculation Methodology) automatically. Users can override the automatic configuration and change the standards to adhere to a different energy code, or edit the baseline values to better match their proposed design. You can read more about it here.
Weather files for UK provinces can be found on the Energy Plus website. If the files for the region are unavailable, users may input their own data so long as it is a .epw file type through the loadmodeling.tool. Steps for custom weather file upload are here.
The Uk Daylighting Standard - Education Funding Agency (EFA) Daylight Design Guide contains guidance on lighting design and daylight modeling for schools. covetool can be used to show the daylight level compliance using Spatial Daylight Autonomy (sDA) metric. Read more.
Rating and Certification
BREEAM (Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method) is a sustainability assessment method and methodology of choice in UK. Covetool's daylighting tool can be used to assess various parameters within BREEAM under various categories including HEA 01 (Health and Wellbeing for Visual Comfort) category. Read more about it here.
Cost differences in building material for UK users are also accounted for in cove.tool on a per-region basis (not yet subdividing into counties, districts, and parishes). Although material costs are principally sourced for North America, these values are then localized based on the International perceived cost factors database. Initial cost-sourcing is accomplished through field research, leveraging our partnerships with various manufacturers, and by performing literary research using credible and reputable publications. We also reference costs that users have shared. At the moment, that covers 4 categories seen in the optimization tool: wall insulation, glazing assembly, HVAC systems, and lighting systems. Lastly, our costs only reflect bare material cost and do not reflect labor, equipment, freight, taxes, and/or other market-driven premiums which may impact your cost. Learn more here.
Carbon emissions are calculated using carbon emissions factors local to your State, Province, or Country. These factors are applied to the electricity usage of the project and a constant value is used against the natural gas usage. Emissions factors for natural gas are sourced from UK Government – Defra/BEIS 2019 Report, which includes combined Generation + Transmission & Distribution factors.