Lead Performer: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) — Richland, WA
DOE Total Funding: $2,150,000
Project Term: October 1, 2022 — September 30, 2023
Funding Type: Direct Funding 


This project is focused on reducing energy use and increasing demand flexibility for building electric systems by improving the availability, accessibility, accuracy, and use of data. Targeted building electric systems will include traditional end-uses (e.g., lighting, information technology) and emerging end-uses resulting from electrification transitions (e.g., electric vehicle chargers).  Advanced building electric systems have varying abilities to monitor and remotely report on their operational and environmental conditions (e.g., power, power quality, hours-of-use, energy use, status). Reported data can be used to improve energy performance, demand flexibility, and maintenance efficiency in both retrofit and new construction environments.

Energy and maintenance improvements can deliver cost savings for building owners. Energy and flexibility improvements can support electric grid decarbonization and building electrification efforts. And maintenance improvements can reduce energy use and result in improved environments for building occupants. Improvements to the availability, accessibility, accuracy, and use of data will be achieved primarily by the increased and more sophisticated use of digital tools and workflows, the increased availability and adoption of software applications that provide valuable services, and the availability of new standards.

Improved digital tools and workflows can enable (semi) automated validation and verification of performance throughout the deployment process – from system design, to specification, to configuration and commissioning, and into operation – with the intent of increasing transparency for all parties and the chances for success. Standards can reduce the barriers of adopting digital tools and workflows and data-driven techniques. Perhaps most importantly, the increased use of validation and verification techniques throughout the deployment process will increase accountability, create feedback loops that improve practices, and ultimately accelerate the adoption of advanced building systems and improvements in their operational performance. 

Research activities will include modeling and simulation, laboratory characterizations, and field evaluations in real-world settings. Research will be supported by early adopter partners, leading designers and consultants, and both building system and software technology providers.


The primary outputs of this project will catalyze and support market transformation of lighting and electrical systems in buildings toward more energy-efficient, data- and occupancy-driven performance. Market transformation will be achieved via the identification of needs and opportunities for industry stakeholders, contributions to voluntary standards development organizations and industry consortia, successful partner field project demonstrations, and the development of model specifications.

It is envisioned that a) building developers/owners/operators will use successful field demonstration results to improve building performance, reduce costs, increase building demand flexibility, and deliver better occupant experiences; b) designers and consultants will use digital tool and workflow demonstrations to improve design practices and deliver better design products; c) electric utilities will use increased building system demand flexibility to accelerate grid decarbonization; d) technology developers will use laboratory and field demonstration results to improve future device, system, and software products; and e) voluntary standards development organizations and industry consortia will use contributions to improve and accelerate the development of standards and specifications.


DOE Technology Manager: Wyatt Merrill
Lead Performer: Michael Poplawski, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

Related Publications