Student Energy Audits of Buildings Can Be Done!

Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
ASEE Conferences
Energy conservation and sustainability are at the forefront of engineering today. It is imperative to lead in this effort by showing the next generation of engineers on how they can have an effect on saving our energy and resources, especially through the process of discovery, which leads to genuine learning (Adler, 1982). Luckily, it is easy to demonstrate energy conservation in real environments for hands on learning, even right on campus! In the course Green Facilities Management, student groups performed energy audits of two buildings on campus over time, one from 1948 and the other from 2014. First learning about energy sources and then exploring the actual energy bill, the student then dug into the creation of green buildings, management of renewable energy sources, and life cycle costing. This was supplemented by a key hands-on portion: building inspection, including wall and roof material, insulation levels, window and door sizes, leaks, lighting and appliance loads. Occupant interviews were used to determine hours of operations and uses, and heating and cooling loads were calculated using real-world sources, like heat given off by people, solar radiation, conduction, and ancillary heat gain. Students then analyzed Energy Management Opportunities (EMOs), Green Energy Opportunities (GEOs) and life cycle costs and stated their prioritized recommendations, including an evaluation of installed and possible future green measures. Finally during an oral presentation, the buildings, EMOs and GEOs were compared. Results were assessed by student feedback and project quality. Students appreciated the realistic project and being able to look at the energy efficiency and economics of sustainability. Projects were assessed and 78% of the class had a B+ or higher on the project, exceeding expectations. The oral presentation had similar results.
Green Energy Opportunities (GEOs), Energy Management Opportunities (EMOs)
Scala, V. A., & Klosky, J. L. (2019, June), Student Energy Audits of Buildings Can Be Done! Paper presented at 2019 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition , Tampa, Florida. 10.18260/1-2--33292