The Center is currently developing a number of research projects that will utilize buildings on the UC Berkeley campus. Several of these research areas are currently underway in buildings at other locations:

Occupant Satisfaction Survey of UC Buildings

UC Berkeley's Center for the Built Environment (CBE) has developed a web-based survey tool that gauges occupant satisfaction with key aspects of their indoor environment. The survey is quick to complete, and where dissatisfaction is noted, branching questions enable the user to explain the exact causes of his discomfort. With 350 buildings and 50,000 occupants surveyed to date, the survey database provides a benchmark for many different building metrics including thermal comfort, acoustics, and lighting quality. The survey demo can be viewed at UC Berkeley is implementing the survey across campus to gather information on the performance of its building stock. Thirteen buildings have completed the survey to date, and Capital Projects plans to survey an additional four in the near future. The survey results will help campus staff compare building performance and systematically prioritize where renovations are needed most.

Wireless Lighting Control Retrofit and Demonstration

UC Berkeley has developed (with the Center for the Built Environment and California Energy Commission sponsorship) both hardware and software for a wirelessly networked lighting control system that can be inexpensively retrofitted in existing buildings. The campus implemented this system in two libraries in summer 2007. Eighty-eight fixture controllers were installed on the fifth floor of Moffitt Library, enabling facility managers to turn off over 15 kW of lighting after hours by updating an online schedule. These lights were previously controlled by circuit breakers inside a locked closet accessible only by electricians. In the second project, Doe Library’s Reference Room was retrofitted with 45 controllers. The system can now turn off the high-output fluorescent lights when there is sufficient daylight entering through the skylights. Together these projects will save 90 MWh per year, with a simple payback of less than one year.

Green Map Project

UC Berkeley maintains a geographic guide to sustainable building resources in the Bay Area. A beta version of the Bay Area Geographic Links for Sustainability (BAGLE) has been posted online. This resource allows users to zoom for different scales, select and view resource fields by layer, and link directly to external web sites for additional information. The idea scales nicely down to the campus level, and discussions are underway to determine the how this project could serve UC Berkeley.

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