Epcor Tower

Energy Simulation

Epcor Tower in Edmonton, Alberta, was a hallmark project for many reasons, incorporating many advanced technologies and requiring much team communication and cooperation.

Service completion: Spring 2010
Scope of services: Schematic Design Building Energy Simulation, Minimum and Optimize Energy Performance Simulation (EAp2, EAc1) for USGBC LEED: Core & Shell 1.0, requiring modeling to ASHRAE 90.1-2004.
Size: $250,000,000 construction budget for 29 storeys plus 4 level parkade
Building systems: Advanced curtainwall envelope, 4 pipe fan-coil mechanical system with many advanced technologies described below, no lighting design in Core & Shell.

Advanced technologies modeled include 1) earth-tube preheat of ventilation air; 2) strainer cycle, which bypasses chillers and utilizes only cooling towers for cooling when possible, resulting in large savings; 3) boiler condensate recovery system requiring an increased boiler efficiency, but also manual calculations of additional pumping; 4) heat reclaim off chiller as a design iteration.

The Epcor model was challenging for reasons additional to technical challenges described above. The model was hovering around just meeting prerequisite requirements for much of the design, requiring careful and precise modeling to ensure that the reviewed results were not below prerequisite. One significant contribution of the model was flagging the pump sizing as a design issue, and the consultants revisited this to find gross over-sizing due to miscalculation. After a lot of work and collaboration, the model was successfully reviewed to exceed its energy target at 22% better than ASHRAE, for 4 points.

Thurston Engineering Services professionals “immediately demonstrated high competency in modeling our complex building and excellent communication skills in relaying the status and issues with the model to our design team.” – Prime Consultant, Epcor Tower project

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