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The Belmont: Performance Measurement

LOCATION: Vancouver, BC

SENSOR CLASS: Investigative Monitoring INDUSTRY: Commercial


SMT provided the building consultant, RDH, with the following sensor sets in order to measure the building performance characteristics and perform a thorough analysis of the building:

  • Differential Pressure sensors

  • Wireless CO2 sensors

  • RH/T sensors

  • Pulse Counting sensors

  • Temperature monitoring

  • Exterior weather station

Excerpt form SabMagazine:

"Implementation followed a whole building systems approach, that first considered passive strategies to reduce the heating load, with future plans to improve the mechanical systems. Heating energy was reduced through a highly insulated building enclosure, energy-efficient windows, and airtightness improvements. The existing exterior walls were exposed cladding with 50mm of foam insulation at the inside, with an overall effective R-value of R-4. For the renewals project, the walls were over-clad with 89mm of mineral wool insulation behind stucco and metal panel cladding. The cladding and insulation were held in place using fibreglass ‘Cascadia Clips’, which significantly reduce thermal bridging compared to a more traditional metal girt cladding system. This assembly resulted in an overall effective R-value of R-16 for the exterior walls.

With a window-to-wall ratio of 50%, the windows accounted for a significant portion of heat loss. The existing windows consisted of double glazing with air fill and no low-e coatings in non-thermally broken aluminum frames. These were replaced with triple-glazed windows with fibreglass frames, improving the window U-value from about USI-3.1 [U-0.55] to USI-0.97 [U-0.17].

Airtightness improvements were made to the enclosure through installation of a liquid-applied air and water barrier over cracks in the concrete, best practice detailing at interfaces and penetrations, and new airtight windows. The whole building airtightness was tested before and after the retrofit. The initial pre-retrofit airtightness was 0.71 cfm/sf at 75 Pa. Following the retrofit, the airtightness dropped to 0.32 cfm/sf at 75 Pa.

Energy savings as a result of the enclosure renewals project were estimated through whole building energy modelling, and are predicted to be 20% in overall building energy, and 90% for in-suite space heating energy. This retrofit should nearly eliminate the need for electric baseboard heating and cut total building suite heating costs from $18,000 to just $2,000 per annum."

Find the whole article here.

Read the thesis by Lorne Rickets (University of Waterloo) on Stack Effect and Pressure Monitoring using SMT equipment: A Field Study of Airflow in a High-Rise Multi-Unit Residential Building

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