This is a list of some of the published research and projects from our team of engineers.
Heat pumps are viewed as the primary path to the electrification required to reduce and eliminate fossil fuels and associated carbon emissions in building energy systems. However, most heat pumps used in the US today contain R-410A, which is itself a relatively potent greenhouse gas. Preventing refrigerant leaks is therefore a priotity. This article examines the issue and suggest best practices to prevent refrigerant leaks.
In partnership with NYSERDA, Taitem Engineering completed a demonstration project focused on the practical application of air-to-water heat pumps for heating use in residential buildings. Throughout the project phases, Taitem identified market barriers to broader adoption of air-to-water heat pumps which are outlined in this report. Design strategies were developed to circumvent some of the barriers to adoption for this technology, although barriers related to cost and installation contractors remain.
The latest in comprehensive energy management
Read two impactful case studies from Taitem’s work as a NYSERDA On-Site Energy Manager (OsEM) about two industrial facilities exceeding their energy savings goals. This program offers a 75 percent cost-share for industrial, commercial, and multifamily buildings to work with Taitem for one year as a dedicated on-site energy manager. Taitem Senior Energy Analysts served as OsEMs for two manufacturing facilities:
Electrification of vehicles is becoming one of the main avenues for decarbonization of the transportation market. Coordinating EVs to charge at times when fewer people require electricity can reduce carbon emissions as they effectively prevent stress on the power grid by reducing peak loads. In a survey, a choice experiment elicited customer preferences. Econometric choice models were then used to analyze customer response to residential EV charging and deadline scheduling.
It has become clear that the largest hurdle to overcome in the building industry is devising a pathway to economically and feasibly take on deep energy retrofits of existing structures. This report outlines the schematic design phase for the Christopher Court deep energy retroift project under NYSERDA’s RetrofitNY program.
Energiesprong: A Dutch Approach to Deep Energy Retrofits and Its Applicability to the New York Market
An assessment of a program to lower energy use in affordable housing in the Netherlands was performed. Net energy use is successfully being eliminated by reducing energy use, converting all energy uses to electricity (eliminating fossil fuels), and producing this electricity on-site with solar energy. The approach appears to be transferable to the New York State market.
passivehousebuilding.com, Spring 2019.
Not all retrofits can be accomplished in one go, as the PHI recognized when it created a certification for phased retrofits, or EnerPHit projects. Deep energy retrofits of existing structures are an absolute must for meeting any reasonable carbon emission reduction goals, but cost-effective retrofits are challenging, to say the least.
hpbmagazine.org, July 2019.
Imagine an Energy Code that measurably reduces energy use and carbon emissions in new buildings, without increasing construction cost. Imagine an energy code that broadly follows the goals of Architecture 2030, taking us to zero carbon buildings that are free of fossil fuels by 2030.
facilities.net, April 2019.
An LED lighting retrofit can make a facility manager a hero in the organization because of the energy savings and reduced maintenance cost that the upgrade provides. But most facility managers aren’t aware that they can save significantly more energy, over and above the savings from the LEDs…
The Town of Caroline building which houses its courtroom and history museum was the subject of a recent Taitem research project investigating potential water savings from the conversion of steam heating systems to air source heat pumps.
Based on the market data analyzed, there are at least 100,000 PTACs/PTHPs that could be retrofit to a high-efficiency cold-weather PTHP in New York State without the need for fuel switching or exterior wall renovations.
Home Energy, Fall 2018.
Heat pump water heaters are seeing increasing use in homes. They go well with solar PV and so support strategic electrification to reduce carbon emissions. And they are more efficient than electric-resistance water heaters. Several major water heater manufacturers are now making them. They are clearly here to stay
SOLARPRO, April 2018.
Whether you measure your project size in kilowatts or megawatts, understanding the key concepts and processes for commissioning PV systems increases your bottom line and your clients’ satisfaction.
Building Operating Management, January 2018.
We may be seeing the beginning of the end of the use of fossil fuels to heat buildings. A push to electrify buildings to reduce carbon emissions, along with increasing availability of renewably-generated electricity, is combining with a drop in installed cost to form a perfect storm in demand for heat pump systems.
“Heating Loads — Upstairs vs. Downstairs” Home Energy, Fall 2017.
“Blowing Off Steam – The Case for VRF Heat Pumps To Replace Steam” Syracuse Center of Excellence Innovation Fund Report, April 2017.
“3 ways to save energy — permanently“Building Operating Management, December 2016.
“Optimized Strategy for Scaling Up Deep Energy Retrofit,“Final Report to New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, July 2015.
“Case Study: Net-zero energy building in NYC,“Consulting-Specifying Engineer, May 2015.
“V-Strip Weather Strip Update: Two Years Later,” Home Energy, December 2014.
“Boosting Multifamily Energy Savings Through Lighting Control Settings,” Home Energy, August/September 2013.
“Air Infiltration Measurements in Buildings Using Sound Transmission Loss Through Small Apertures,” International Journal of Green Energy, May, 2012.
“The Receptivity of Roofs to Solar Panels,” Sciforum’s 2nd World Sustainability Forum, November, 2012; Sciforum Electronic Conferences Series, 2012.
“Energy Audits, Improvements in Small Office Buildings,” ASHRAE Journal, October, 2012.
“Weatherstripping Windows with V-Strip,” Home Energy, September/October, 2012.
“Measuring Window U-factors with IR Thermometers,” Home Energy, May/June, 2012.
“Method to Diagnose Window Failures and Measure U-Factors on Site,” International Journal of Green Energy, 9 (3) 280-296, 2012.
“Leaking Shower Diverters – An Overlooked Energy Waster,” Home Energy, March/April 2012.
“HVAC Selection for Envelope Dominated Buildings,” ASHRAE Journal, October 2011.
“Air Bypass in Vertical Stack Water Source Heat Pumps,” HVAC&R Research, October 2011.
“Ten Common Problems in Energy Audits,” ASHRAE Journal, February 2011.
“Design from the Outside In,” Journal of Green Building, Volume 5.1, Winter 2010.
“Water and Energy Use in Steam-Heated Buildings“, ASHRAE Journal, May 2010.
“Energy Audits in Large Commercial Office Buildings,” ASHRAE Journal, January 2009.
“Clean Energy for Green Buildings,” Journal of Green Building, Vol. 2 No. 1, Winter 2007.
“Sealing Attic Hatches,” Home Energy, September/ October 2007.
“Improving Crawlspaces in New York Multifamily Buildings,” Home Energy, July/August 2006.
“Emergency Generators and Combustion-Air Safety,” Heating/Piping/Air Conditioning Engineering, November 2000.
“Converting Electrically Heated Multifamily Buildings: The Vented Room Heater Option,” Home Energy, January/February 2000. (Includes: “Unvented Gas Heaters in New York,” sidebar.)
“ASHRAE 152P Validation: Basement Warm-Air Distribution Systems,” with Peter Strunk, Synertech Systems /Corporation, August 1999. Part 2/Part 3
“The Impact of Accessibility on Air Filter Cleanliness,” INvironment Professional, January 1999, Vol. 5, No. 1.
“Evaluation of Ground Source Heat Pump Refrigerant Circuit,” Final Report to New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, 1999.
“Common Mistakes in Indoor Air Quality Calculations,” INvironment Professional, August 1996, Vol. 2, No. 8.
“Evaluation of Ventilation in Multifamily Buildings,” Final Report to New York State Energy Research and Development Authority Report 93-5, June 1993.
“Model Ventilation Audit for Multifamily Buildings,” New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, May 1993.
“Measuring Heat Pump Efficiency in the Field,” Home Energy, March/April 1991.
“Tips for Specifying Heat Recovery Ventilators,” Newsletter of the Central New York Chapter of the American Institute of Architects, April 1991.
Bidding for Demand Side Management Performance Contracts,” with Greg Thomas, Home Energy, January-February 1991.