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Fenestration Software Tools

Lead Performer: Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory - Berkeley, CA
-- Window Covering Manufacturing Association/Attachments Energy Ratings Council - New York, NY
DOE Funding: $1,062,000
Cost Share: Provided by LBNL

Project Term: October 1, 2013 - September 30, 2018

Project Objective

Window attachments represent a cost-effective opportunity to save energy in new and existing buildings, both residential and commercial sectors. The current selection of window attachments offers a limited number of high-performance energy efficiency products. More rapid market update would be facilitated by third-party ratings, certification, and labeling. BTO is funding the Window Coverings Manufacturing Association (WCMA) to create a program to rate and certify fenestration attachment, called the Attachments Energy Rating Council (AERC). In addition to this FOA, BTO is funding this project with LBNL during the four-year simulation and experimental tool and test procedure development. WCMA is expected to work collaboratively with LBNL on these technical tools and on educational and training activities. LBNL will also provide support for the Complex Glazing Database.

Manufacturers have been using Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s (LBNL’s) fenestration software tools for decades to design energy-efficient window technologies. These advanced, independently verified tools are moving the window industry toward virtual, rapid product design and product development, which accelerates design-to-market delivery. The goal is to (1) develop validated, standardized, and international harmonized simulation models and test procedures for characterizing a wide range of window attachments, and (2) implement improvements in existing simulation models and newly developed ones in WINDOW and THERM software tools, so that AERC has sound infrastructure on which to base its ratings and certification program.

Project Impact

LBNL estimates their fenestration software tools have the technical potential for energy savings by 2030 from windows at 2 quads (commercial and residential) and an additional 0.17 quad for daylighting. This project also helps accomplish carbon emission reduction goals through the free access to these world-class modeling tools.


DOE Technology Manager: Amir Roth
Performer: Charles Curcija, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

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