IDL Series - University of Oregon - Product Council

The University of Oregon (UO) Energy Studies in Buildings Lab (ESBL), as part of the UO Institute for Health in the Built Environment (IHBE), is conducting on-going research that aims to improve seismic performance of existing buildings in the Pacific Northwest. This work synthesizes advancement in four areas:

• Energy retrofit of an aging building stock.
• Seismic upgrade of that same existing building stock.
• Utilization and adoption of mass timber panels (MTP) for façade assemblies, including panelized retrofit applications.
• Incorporation of passive daylighting strategies as part of a holistic façade design to improve occupant health and comfort and building energy performance.

The goal of this work is to develop a modular mass timber panel façade retrofit system for low-rise commercial buildings that meets level 2 seismic resilience and improves facade energy performance to Net Zero Energy standards, per ASHRAE’s Advanced Energy Design Guide. This project also opened an opportunity for the UO IHBE team to optimize natural lighting and further improve energy performance via the façade and interior design interventions. This includes testing different passive strategies like interior and exterior shading and material treatments to better mitigate direct sunlight and solar heat gain and improve distribution of natural lighting, while optimizing HVAC and lighting energy use.
Dr. Mark Fretz will introduce the overall project and some of the work done on the seismic resilience side, while Dr. Siobhan Rockcastle will focus on the daylighting design strategies incorporated into the modular façade retrofit system and their related health, comfort, and energy benefits.

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