Grid-Interactive Efficient Buildings

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At the Building Technologies Office, we’re conducting Grid-interactive Efficient Buildings (GEB) research to help bring connectedness – and the related energy savings – across the entire building sector, commercial and residential alike. GEB research will allow American businesses and families to save energy and reduce their utility bills without impacting comfort or productivity.

The GEB vision is more than just saving energy and money inside buildings. Increased Internet connections for building equipment can also enable buildings to be more responsive to electric grid conditions. This helps avert system stress, enhancing the reliability of the entire grid. Grid-interactive water heaters, for example, know exactly when to turn on or off the electric heating elements to reduce power use during moments when the utility system reaches peak demand or to shift power consumption to when the utility system has excess capacity.

Examples of Related Projects

Lead Performer: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory – Richland, WA
Lead Performer: Unico Systems - St. Louis, MO Partners: -- Oak Ridge National Laboratory - Oak Ridge, TN -- Purdue University - West Lafayette, ...
Lead Performer: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory – Richland, WA

Time-Varying Value of Electric Energy Efficiency

Figure 1. This figure shows the ratio of the value of energy efficiency when time-dependent capacity benefits are included versus when only energy-related benefits are included. Improving the efficiency of air conditioning is up to three times more valuab

Grid Modernization Initiative

Graphic of a U.S. map with text overlays and markers denoting the locations of the national labs and the various activities going on in states and regions.

GEB Blog Series

Buildings and the Grid 101: How Much Does Timing Matter?
Understanding when efficiency occurs, and its value at those times, is a central component of BTO’s efforts.
May 21, 2019
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Buildings and the Grid 101: Why Timing Matters
We will dig deeper into why the timing of energy efficiency matters. To put it simply, it’s a matter of economics.
May 8, 2019
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How Advanced Building Technologies in Grid-Interactive Efficient Buildings Can Support the Grid
As part of its grid-interactive efficient buildings (GEB) vision, BTO directs breakthrough research that will make building technologies smarter.
December 20, 2018
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Buildings and the Grid 101: How Are Building Technologies Office Partners Researching and Validating in the Field?
With a rapidly changing energy industry, Southern Company recognizes that accelerating technology development is more important than ever.
May 1, 2018
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ASHRAE, Buildings, the Grid, and Resources to Face the Challenges
Enabling smarter grids has the potential to create a revolution in the building sector that will save energy and costs.
April 25, 2018
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Buildings and the Grid 101: Opportunities and Challenges from HVAC, Water Heating, and Appliances
HVAC, water heating, and other appliances represent more than half of the total energy used in U.S. residential and commercial buildings.
March 16, 2018
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Buildings and the Grid: Helping Commercial Buildings Get Smarter
The intersection of occupant comfort, productivity, and energy reduction is no secret.
February 12, 2018
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Buildings and the Grid 101: It Matters, But How Much?
It’s the last days of holiday shopping, and everyone is noticing all of the Internet-connected products out there.
December 21, 2017
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Buildings and the Grid 101: Challenges
Buildings are becoming more responsive and dispatchable, reacting to grid needs while also helping American businesses and families to save energy.
October 19, 2017
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Buildings and the Grid 101: Why Does it Matter for Energy Efficiency?
Every hour more than 200,000 new devices get connected to the Internet globally, and the U.S. market for these devices is the world’s biggest.
September 12, 2017
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