ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 28

Financing Quality: Design Team as ESCo
Often, little motivation exists beyond the design phase for
engineers to verify installation quality and proper system operation. The design team would have a strong incentive if it
functioned as an energy service company (ESCo) by entering
into a shared savings contract for the first several years of the
building operation. Not only would the firm take greater care
in performing high quality design, but it would monitor system installation more diligently as well as proper HVAC and
building system control operation.
The process would begin with an installation cost budget that
would provide an attractive return on investment for the owners
using an energy cost for a system with an above average efficiency. A suggested baseline might be the energy cost for a building
that received an ENERGY STAR rating of 75. The ENERGY
STAR Target Finder2 is specifically structured to provide the energy consumption to attain such a rating. Any energy savings
above this value would be shared by the owner and design team
at negotiated percentages. If the installation costs were higher (or
lower), the base ENERGY STAR rating would be reset so that
the owners received an equivalent return on their investment. For
example, if the installation costs were less, the baseline rating
might be 72, or if costs were higher the baseline might be 80.

Barriers and Common Sense Approaches

• Ground loops should be big (see sidebar, “Characteristics
of Successful GSHPs”);
• Pumps should be small (less than 7.5 hp/100 tons [1.6
kW/100 kW]);
• Fans should be small (less than 15 hp/100 tons [0.3
kW/100 kW]);
• Itemized costs should be required on bids;
• Individual or multiple mid-size interior circuit headers
should be the first design option;
• Large central interior circuit headers should be used when
smaller loops are not technically possible;
• Water-to-air heat pumps should be used unless system efficiency calculations demonstrate water-to-water heat pumps
or chillers are a better option (see Table 13, 2011 ASHRAE
Handbook—HVAC Applications, Chapter 34);
• Controls should be simple and not be so expensive that
ground loops must be made smaller for the system cost to remain within the allowable budget;
• Ventilation air equipment capacity should be near minimum ASHRAE recommended values so that when control
systems fail, buildings are not excessively overventilated;
• Engineers that subcontract ground loop design should be
avoided, especially those whose mechanical drawings specify
the ground loop to be designed by “the contractor” or “by others”; and
• An important component in selecting a high quality design
firm should the submission and review of “engineering portfolios” similar to the example provided in this article.

The first barrier to wider application of quality GSHPs is the
high cost of the ground loop. This cost is significant (26% of the
total in the systems surveyed in this project), but quality ground
loops provide an opportunity to reduce the cost of the interior
portion of the systems if engineers are wise and diligent. Expe- Changes to ASHRAE Standards
rienced ground loop contractors appear to have become more
Standard 90.1-2010 Mechanical Section
effective in that their costs have risen by only 52% in the past 15
It was discovered that systems with the highest ENERGY
years while the HVAC industry (engineers, ASHRAE, manu- STAR ratings in this survey (unitary, one-pipe, and common
facturers) seem to be less effective since this portion of the sys- loops) are now non-compliant with the recent updates to the
tem costs has risen by 177% in the same period.
mechanical section of ASHRAE/IES Standard 90.1-2010
Common sense would dictate that if the HVAC interior (Section 6.5.4.4). However, systems with ground loops concomponent of GSHPs is approximately three times the cost nected to VAV air-distribution systems with a fan power of 2.3
and the percentage increase has risen over three times as much hp/1,000 cfm (0.36 kW/100 L/s) are compliant for health-care
of the ground loop since 1995, efforts would be made to iden- facilities and possibly other building types.3 This fan power is
tify the particulars. It is also of concern that GSHPs are often approximately five times the value recommended in this artiperceived to be “too expensive” or “do not have acceptable cle (based on 400 cfm/ton [54 L·s/100 kW), translates to a fan
life-cycle cost,” but there is little published information on ac- power of 0.76 kW/ton (0.22 kW/kW) (based on 90% efficient
tual installation costs.
motors) and will result in a fan heat penalty of 22% of chiller
There continues to be insufficient information, especially capacity (Table 2).
itemized cost details, to identify the most prudent paths toThis might explain the reason the chilled water GSHP sysward high performance, economic value, and owner/occupant tems surveyed attained ENERGY STAR ratings of 20 and 21.
satisfaction. Chapter 37,“Owning and Operating Cost” of the Systems with high auxiliary power demand and resulting en2011 ASHRAE Handbook—HVAC Applications, has
little information on recent HVAC system costs and
2.3 hp/1000 cfm × 400 cfm/ton = 0.92 hp/ton
Standard 90.1
service life. This type of information is very important,
Fan Power Limit: 0.746 kW/hp × 0.92 hp ÷ 90% = 0.76 kW/ton
and ASHRAE research efforts need to focus more on
field surveys that collect performance and cost data for
0.76 kW/ton × 3,412 Btu/kWh = 2,600 Btu/h per ton
Fan Heat Penalty:
all types of HVAC systems.
2,600 Btu/h ÷ 12,000 Btu/h = 22% of chiller capacity
Additional recommendations are provided based on
the data collected during this project.
Table 2: Changes to Standard 90.1-2010.
28

ASHRAE Journal

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February 2013



ASHRAE Journal - February 2013

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of ASHRAE Journal - February 2013

Contents
Commentary
Industry News
Letters
Meetings and Shows
Feature Articles
R-22 Hard Act to Follow: Ammonia Low-Pressure Receiver Systems
Long-Term Commercial GSHP Performance: Part 7: Achieving Quality
Thermally Active Floors: Part 2: Design
Future of DCV for Commercial Kitchens
Standing Columns and Special Sections
Building Sciences
Emerging Technologies
ACREX India 2013 Show Guide
Refrigeration Applications
InfoCenter
Data Centers
IAQ Applications
Special Products
Classified Advertising
Advertisers Index
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Intro
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Cover1
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Cover2
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 1
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 2
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Contents
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Commentary
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 5
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Industry News
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 7
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 8
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 9
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 10
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 11
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Letters
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 13
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Meetings and Shows
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 15
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - R-22 Hard Act to Follow: Ammonia Low-Pressure Receiver Systems
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 17
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 18
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 19
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 20
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 21
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 22
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 23
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 24
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 25
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Long-Term Commercial GSHP Performance: Part 7: Achieving Quality
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 27
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 28
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 29
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 30
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 31
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 32
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 33
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 34
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 35
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Thermally Active Floors: Part 2: Design
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 37
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 38
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 39
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 40
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 41
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 42
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 43
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 44
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 45
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 46
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 47
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Future of DCV for Commercial Kitchens
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 49
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 50
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 51
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 52
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 53
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 54
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 55
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Building Sciences
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 57
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 58
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 59
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 60
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 61
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 62
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Emerging Technologies
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 64
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - ACREX India 2013 Show Guide
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 64b
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S1
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S2
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S3
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S4
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S5
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S6
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S7
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S8
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S9
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S10
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S11
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S12
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S13
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S14
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S15
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S16
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S17
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S18
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S19
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S20
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S21
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - S22
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Refrigeration Applications
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - InfoCenter
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 67
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 68
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 69
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 70
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 71
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Data Centers
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 73
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 74
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - IAQ Applications
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 76
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - 77
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Special Products
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Classified Advertising
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Advertisers Index
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Cover3
ASHRAE Journal - February 2013 - Cover4
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