Bentley Releases New Energy Performance Series for Green Building Design

16 Mar, 2009

Hevacomp and Tas products are now available in the United States and Canada.

Bentley Systems today introduced to the United States and Canada its Energy Performance Series, which the company calls the first robust software for building energy design, analysis, and simulation. The Energy Performance Series, including Bentley Tas Simulator V8i, Hevacomp Simulator V8i, and Hevacomp Mechanical Designer V8i, has been in use in the U.K. market for the design and construction of high-performance green buildings, including the iconic 30 St Mary Axe, Heron Tower, Terminal 5 Heathrow, 122 Leadenhall Street, and CityPoint, London. Now engineers, architects, and energy assessors in the United States and Canada can use this software to help ensure that buildings perform as predicted.

Bentley’s Energy Performance Series is designed to help users better understand and accurately predict the energy consumption, carbon dioxide emissions, operating costs, and occupant comfort of projects ranging from small and simple to very large and highly complex, the company explains. It also provides the right tools to effectively and productively design, analyze, and simulate building energy systems.

Noah Eckhouse, vice-president of Bentley’s Building Performance Group, said, “Bentley’s Energy Performance Series fills the void left by existing tools in this arena, which typically are incomplete, siloed, imprecise, and slow. It provides the fastest, most powerful, and most accurate dynamic simulation and analysis available for building load, plant energy, passive design, and thermal simulations. And, because all of the products interoperate, the Energy Performance Series ensures a collaborative process that increases reuse of information. In addition, its support of industry standards, including ASHRAE Standard 90.1-2004, ASHRAE Standard 140-2004 (BESTEST Models), LEED Energy and Atmosphere Credit 1, U.K. Building Regulations Part L2, ISO, ANSI/ASME, CIBSE, and others, facilitates required compliance checking and documentation.”

In the United States, the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED program is the emerging standard for evaluating a building’s energy performance. Bentley’s Energy Performance Series maximizes point accumulation under LEED Energy and Atmosphere Credit 1.

Bentley’s Energy Performance Series uses two differently purposed simulation engines to provide building energy design and analysis: the EnergyPlus engine, the standard developed by the U.S. Department of Energy, and the independently developed and highly regarded Tas high-speed engine. The Hevacomp simulation engine is optimized for typical project configurations and to ensure compliance with regulatory requirements and industry best practices. The Tas simulation engine is ideally suited for fast evaluation of multiple options, quick testing of concepts, and comprehensive analysis of large and complex buildings. Hevacomp and Tas simulations can be used in tandem for additional insight and complementary in-depth studies to further optimize building performance.

Users of Bentley’s Energy Performance Series can not only quickly create, from 2D floor plans, 3D analysis models with detailed thermal properties, but can also predict -- with unrivaled detail and accuracy -- annual energy consumption, carbon dioxide emissions, and operating costs. Moreover, the software facilitates the workflow for design, analysis, and simulation.

The high-speed simulation engine allows users to perform analyses more frequently, in sync with the design process. The results of the analyses are timely and actionable, supporting iterative design refinement. Real-time decisions from near-real-time analysis make for a more effective design process and better-performing buildings -- setting the bar for the contributions of green-building professionals.

“With the Energy Performance Series, users can study the energy dynamics of a building in conjunction with detailed models of the building’s mechanical systems. These models are created using Hevacomp Mechanical Designer V8i, an indispensable, quick-and-easy design and analysis tool long and widely used across the U.K. to make engineering-quality building load and energy calculations, lay out systems, select equipment, and resize duct and pipe systems. All of the energy analysis and building system engineering data can then be used to develop integrated strategies that maximize efficiencies,” said Eckhouse.

Eckhouse continued, “Additionally, designers can see the effects of their decisions room by room, zone to zone, as well as on the building as a whole, and accurately predict a building’s performance over any specified time. This holistic design approach improves building quality – and reduces the risk of unacceptable building performance associated with systems that only offer static snapshots -- by increasing design options.”

Bentley’s Energy Performance Series easily integrates with existing 2D workflows and brings detailed building analysis and simulation to building information modeling (BIM). All products work with MicroStation, AutoCAD, and Google SketchUp, and interoperate with Bentley Architecture, Autodesk Revit, and other BIM programs, facilitating collaborative streamlined workflows.