The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has announced up to $33.5 million for early-stage research and development of advanced building construction techniques to reduce energy bills.
Together, America’s 118 million homes and 5.6 million commercial buildings account for approximately 40 percent of the nation’s total energy demand and use 75 percent of its electricity. Furthermore, about half of America’s homes and commercial buildings were built before 1980 when most of today's more efficient products and building construction practices did not yet exist.
The Advanced Building Construction with Energy-Efficient Technologies & Practices (ABC) Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA) aims to develop deep energy retrofit and new construction technologies that tackle a combination of envelope, heating, cooling, water heating, and ventilation issues.
The FOA addresses three areas:
Topic 1 – Integrated Building Retrofits: Focuses on integrating technologies to achieve more affordable, deep energy savings in existing buildings (e.g. light and durable highly insulated panels, combined heating and cooling, and hot water systems). Up to 75 percent energy reduction is sought for major building loads such a space heating and cooling, water heating, and ventilation.
Topic 2 – New Construction Technologies: Focuses on building design, construction, and installation (e.g., off-site manufacturing, robotics, digitization, automation, and improved modeling) to improve affordability, scalability, and performance of energy efficient building systems and methods. The topic seeks solutions that lead to construction of homes and buildings that are 50 percent more efficient compared to current code. This topic has a special emphasis to make mobile homes significantly more efficient while keeping the same initial cost.
Topic 3 – Advanced Technology Integration: Focuses on field validation of new innovative technologies and building practices, workforce training, and service delivery methods suited to regional and/or local needs, including those related to building stock, regional climates and grid characteristics.
Concept papers are due on June 10, 2019 by 5 p.m. ET to be eligible to submit a full application. More information on this FOA can be found here. Questions regarding the content of this FOA must be submitted to ABC2019FOA@ee.doe.gov. More information on the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s Building Technologies Office can be found here.