Advanced building controls and energy management strategies could result in an average of nearly 30% energy savings. There is an industry-wide knowledge gap on how to utilize advanced controls to capitalize on energy savings and to ensure that buildings run at peak performance. Slipstream, in partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), Texas A&M University, and TRC Companies, Inc., developed a comprehensive training resource for disseminating building controls basics and advanced building controls concepts to Department of Defense (DoD) stakeholders.

Technology Description

This technology transfer project was to develop and deliver a comprehensive training resource for disseminating advanced building control concepts and applications to multiple target audiences. Key audiences include DoD installation and acquisition managers, DoD building design and commissioning engineers, facility engineers, and building operators. This training resource will be incorporated into and complement existing DoD training on heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system design, control, commissioning, and operation. It will also help promote the awareness and potential future adoption of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) Guideline 36 “High-Performance Sequences of Operation for HVAC Systems” within the DoD.

Demonstration Results

The project team successfully developed 17 short courses for energy managers and 21 hour-long courses for engineers and facility operators. These courses are now available at Slipstream’s online Learning Management System, the Whole Building Design Guide website, and YouTube. The team members also disseminated the training information by presenting at 11 industry workshops and events. In less than six months, these training resources have been accessed by 4,301 participants. On average, these training sessions have a satisfaction rating of 4.25/5 for the short courses and 4.07/5 for the hour-long courses. Lastly, USACE reviewed the ASHRAE Guideline 36 and recommended partial adoption of the guideline in the future version of the Unified Facilities Guide Specifications. The cost for developing the short courses is approximately $3,000 each. The cost of developing the longer courses is estimated at $12,000 per session. The training resource can be accessed at the following webpage (https://slipstreaminc.org/estcp).

Implementation Issues

The major barrier resulting from this project was not being able to provide in-person training due to the COVID-19 pandemic.