What is an Energy Model? - Self Study


Author: Chris Schaffner

Subjects: Green Building: Sustainable Building, Green Building: LEED

557 students are interested in this course


"What is an Energy Model?"

In this free course, Chris Schaffner describes a variety of methods for modeling building energy consumption. He starts with simple energy estimating tools of increasing complexity, finally arriving at detailed energy simulations.

A few simple methods are described, and spreadsheets (listed below) built to use these methods are provided. The specific requirements of energy simulations are discussed, and the course concludes with a case study demonstrating the power of parametric energy simulations as a design tool.

Two excel documents included:
- Simplified Heat Recovery Calculator
- Simplified Ground Source Heat Pump Calculator

Learning Objectives

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Self Paced Online Course

This is a self-study, self-paced online course. You can begin instantly upon enrollment and complete the course materials on your own pace.

Access Information and Build Your Training Library

After enrolling, the course materials will remain in your account and be accessible 12 months (1 year) after enrollment. Access can be extended beyond 1 year with a monthly membership. Rewatch videos and review assignments as many times as you want. View updates the instructor makes to the course as the industry advances. Return to your course anytime with online access from anywhere in the world.

Not Eligible For Continuing Education Credits or Certificates

Since this is a free course, it is not eligible for Continuing Education Credits (CEUs) and has not been approved by any credentialing organizations (NABCEP, AIA, USGBC etc). This course is for self education purposes only and completion does not indicate a level of professional expertise or credential. Certificates of completion and CEU Credits are only available for our premium paid courses.


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Chris Schaffner

Principal and Founder, The Green Engineer, Inc.

The Green Engineer founder, Chris Schaffner, P.E., LEED Fellow, is a professional mechanical engineer registered in Massachusetts, California, and Vermont. Chris has been a member of the USGBC faculty since 2001, training more than 9,200 building industry professionals in the LEED rating system. He is a member of the USGBC's Curriculum Committee, and is on the Energy...[more]

Course Outline

Watch the "What is an Energy Model?" Lecture

  • Lecture (Video - 37:11 minutes)
  • Simplified Ground Source Heat Pump calculator (Download .xls)
  • Simplified Heat Recovery Calculator (Download .xls)

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