2019 ASHRAE Building Performance Analysis Conference & Project StaSIO

2019 ASHRAE Building Performance Analysis Conference and Project StaSIO

After a tremendously successful first year of IBPSA-USA’s Project StaSIO, EDSL USA VP Michael Sawford is looking forward to expanding its reach and offering.  “Last September’s Building Performance Analysis Conference and SimBuild was the perfect opportunity to introduce Project StaSIO to the world, and the competition provided a great way to kick start the resource for the BEM community.

This year promises some exciting advancements – new leaders have joined, enabling the committee to expand its range and potential impact. Thanks in large part to the DOE, who funded the initiative, we are redeveloping our online presence, and refreshing the website to create an engaging, valuable, easy-to-use resource for inspiration and research. 

2019 ASHRAE Building Performance Analysis Conference - Pre-conference Workshops

In addition to our involvement on the StaSIO committee, EDSL is supporting the initiative and its goals in several other ways. At ASHRAE BPAC 2019, we are sponsoring the pre-conference course Crafting your story with building performance simulation data, led by experts from Thornton Tomasetti and LMN Architects.  We will also be running a pre-conference course entitled Effective simulation throughout the building life cycle with Tas”.  Both worships will take place on Tuesday, September 24.  

You can learn more and register here, spaces are limited so please register early:


DOE BTO Peer Review 2019

US Department of Energy's Building Technologies Office BEM Peer Review 2019

Along with other industry leaders and stakeholders, EDSL’s Michael Sawford was invited as a reviewer for the DOE’s BTO BEM Peer Review. The review took place April 16th last month, where participants were asked to review and advise the current range of BTO projects with the goal of furthering research and the advancement of building simulation in the design, operations, and maintenance of buildings.

BTO's Request for Information

The Building Technologies Office has produced a request for information and provided all the necessary information on the EERE exchange website for the wider BEM community to get involved and participate. IBPSA-USA has also provided a useful survey for the community to get involved and respond to the RFI.
Responses to this RFI must be submitted electronically to BTO_BEM_RDO@ee.doe.gov no later than 5:00pm (ET) on June 3, 2019.
To participate follow the links below:
  • DOE Resources:
  • IBPSA-USA resources for participating:

Tas two-way link to EnergyPlus

See the About Tas page to learn more about how we are working on improved flexibility and interoperability with Tas and EnergyPlus/eQuest to support the BEM community:

SimAUD 2019

EDSL USA at SimAUD 2019

EDSL was at SimAUD 2019, the symposium on simulation for architecture and urban design.
This was EDSL’s first SimAUD event.
Working with professionals, researchers, and students in the fields of architecture, engineering, and sustainability sends a strong message about the power and effectiveness of transdisciplinary collaboration, analysis, and simulation.” said Michael Sawford, Vice President of EDSL USA.
Here are a few items we found of particular interest:
  • Interoperability remains a sticking point in transdisciplinary collaboration workflows.  One of EDSL’s objectives is to minimize barriers across tools and support informational continuity.  Each discipline can work with their best-suited applications while also being able to communicate upstream and downstream with their peers.  To this end, Tas software supports two-way interoperability with EnergyPlus -based tools, and the ability to import eQuest model data.  
  • Parametric optimization is always a popular topic at research conferences, and Tas currently supports LBNL’s GenOpt tool for multiobjective optimizations.   Thanks to the conference presentations and feedback, we are now researching additional optimization algorithms for enhanced flexibility.  
  • A number of presentations focused on reducing simulation times through model abstraction and reducing the number of simulations required.  Tas software can deliver results more quickly thanks to its own fast and robust simulation engine, allowing users to explore the same size design space more quickly, or a larger design space in the same amount of time.  Coupled with the strategies presented could lead to even quicker results.
EDSL Tas table 1
TasGenOpt – Parametric Multi-objective Optimisation analysis in Tas (below: 23 simulations in 7 minutes):

EDSL's Tas software at Georgia Tech

Georgia Tech was an ideal venue for SimAUD, thanks in particular to their innovative school of architecture led by Scott Marble.  Dr Dennis Shelden, head of the Digital Building Lab, gave a thoughtful overview of simulation and technology’s trajectory through the past thirty years, and Dr Fried Augenbroe wowed us with an inspirational collection of his reflections about building simulation and its effectiveness.  
We are especially proud that EDSL’s Tas software is being taught in Dr Augenbroe’s High Performance Building Lab, and are working with the Lab on the Living Building Challenge certification for the new Kendeda Building for Innovative Sustainable Design.  

BuildingEnergy Boston 2019

EDSL USA at BuildingEnergy Boston 2019

EDSL was at NESEA’s BuildingEnergy Boston Conference + Trade Show, it’s been a full week and we are finally getting caught up.

As this was EDSL’s first NESEA event, we weren’t sure what to expect. The organization was great and we were welcomed by the community. We had hoped to attend more classes but thanks to interest at the booth we were afforded little time. It was encouraging to see the diversity of attendees ranging from policy makers, product manufacturers, architects, engineers, and everything in between. The culmination of many discussions with people from diverse backgrounds lead to possibilities for the use of our software in traditional applications and in new directions.

We are very excited to participate in BuildingEnergy New York as it is our home base in the US. We are hoping to build a strong local user group and are looking forward to being involved in the NESEA community going forward.

exhibit 2

Energy, CO2, and Embodied Carbon - how the AEC industry can turn buildings into carbon sinks

Michelle Apigian (ICON Arcitecture) and James Petersen (Petersen Engineering) opened the Keynote session ‘Carbon Drawdown Now! Turning Buildings into Carbon Sinks‘ presented by Chris Magwood (Endeavour Centre), Ace McArleton & Jacob Racusin (New Frameworks). The keynote focussed on how buildings have the potential to become the world’s fifth largest carbon sink, rather than a leading emitter and how the work of the AEC industry is essential for climate justice and social equity.

Free Tas academic licenses

Academic Announcement

EDSL Tas - Free Academic Licenses

EDSL is committed to supporting the academic community and expanding the opportunities available to students and faculty alike. As such, we are pleased to announce that we offer Universities our Tas Engineering thermal dynamic simulation software free of charge to instructors and students. To further support instructors, EDSL will also offer no-cost training and support for course lecturers and teaching assistants.

Academic programs involving environmental or mechanical engineering, architecture, sustainability, building services, or another related field can benefit from Tas Engineering.   It simulates an array of environmental and systems design factors including daylight, natural ventilation, HVAC systems, and climate based daylight modeling. 

Tas in the Classroom

Tas is well suited for learning.  Students and teachers can focus less on working around software limitations and more on describing designs, systems, and their components easily, accurately, and clearly.

With the ability to generate and simulate models quickly and easily, it reduces the friction typically associated with preparing geometry and other data for simulation.

The Results Viewer tool combines and displays results in an integrated environment, making it easier to understand relationships among multiple design factors and their ramifications.

It supports highly granular data input and output, enabling students to investigate thoroughly, and minimizes any ‘blackbox’ circumstances in which assumptions and methodologies are not clearly understood.

The fully-featured Systems module combines diagrammatic-level equipment and system definition with the full flexibility of a component-based design tool.

An array of ASHRAE, COMNET, and NCM(UK) database resources are included, containing constructions, calendars, internal conditions, and weather files.  Together, they serve as an extensible library of components and conditions for students to utilize confidently.  Custom resources can be created for more focused areas of study.


Testimonials from early-adopter students and graduates with backgrounds in Mechanical Engineering and Building Performance

“Tas Engineering software is a great platform for students to explore the world of simulation of buildings and further enhance their building physics knowledge along with understanding the simulation outputs generated.”

“During my curriculum for 2 years at University, I have been exposed to various simulation software packages, which all had different user interfaces and calculation methods. The interface that Tas Engineering provides is very user friendly and as a student it was one of the easiest softwares for me to learn.”

“All modules had in-built tutorial videos which makes it easier for me to troubleshoot problems.”

“I first used Tas when I started my career in the HVAC industry. The Systems module was a great way for me to learn how components are arranged in a system and how they all interact with each other. Creating schematic layouts with custom systems in Tas was a great learning tool and it helped further my understanding of different system types and arrangements.”

“As a student, I would strongly recommend young individuals to use Tas Engineering and enhance their skills.”

Terms and Conditions

The software is to be used for educational purposes only, commercial use will require a paid license.

Typical educational license duration is one semester, and maximum duration is one year.  Alternative terms will be considered on a case-by-case basis.  Licenses are renewable upon request with verified academic credentials.

Instructor-assisted training will be provided at no cost to lecturer(s) and/or teaching assistants of courses relating to environmental or mechanical engineering, architecture, sustainability, building services, or another related field.  Lecturers and/or TAs will be responsible for supporting their students with technical issues. 

Students will have access to the Tas training material, available for download at edsltas.com and as part of the Tas installation.  If instructor-assisted training for students is desired, it will be offered at a discounted rate.