Building & Design

Building outside structure

To develop an economically viable building system with zero net energy.

Buildings consume 72% of U.S. electricity and 40% of all U.S. energy.  Getting buildings to zero net energy will dramatically reduce U.S. energy use – but getting there will take more than upgrading windows and insulation. 

Institute researchers are developing smart building energy management systems to accelerate the transition to zero net energy buildings.  Our overarching goal is to develop optimized control systems that will operate buildings at peak comfort and efficiency levels by automatically controlling HVAC, lighting and shading in smart and robust ways.


Energy Management and Visualization Developing data aggregation tools to distill building information into simple visual displays that pinpoint areas of inefficient consumption and offer insights into overall building performance.
Uncertainty and Sensitivity Analysis, and Optimization Developing algorithms to identify the parameters that most strongly influence building energy use and comfort, and selecting what those parameters should be to optimize performance.
Smart Grid Stability Exploring sophisticated analysis and modeling techniques to ensure that generators remain stabilized during grid interruptions, to help utilities handle building loads and manage the complexities of adding distributed renewables to the grid.

Research Projects

There are no current projects at this time.