The Building America Industrialized Housing Partnership (BAIHP):
Saving Energy and Advancing the State of the Art in Residential
by Janet McIlvaine and Subrato Chandra
The Florida Solar Energy Center is the only university-based
Building America team competitively funded by the U.S. Department
of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable
Energy-Building Technologies program. DOE's Building America
Program (www.buildingamerica.gov) advocates a systems engineering approach to home building
that unites segments of the building industry that traditionally
work independently of one another.
The FSEC team was initially selected in 1999 and then selected
again in 2006 for an additional five years.
BAIHP work will result in thousands of homes that are energy-
and resource- efficient while enhancing comfort, durability,
indoor air quality, insurability, affordability, marketability
and construction productivity. As part of the Building America
program, BAIHP will significantly reduce our nation’s
dependence on foreign oil.
Over the next five years, the BAIHP team will conduct cost-shared
research to accelerate the development and adoption of cost-effective,
saving strategies that can be widely implemented by factory
and site builders primarily in the hot-humid Southeast as well
as in marine and cold climates of the Pacific Northwest. The
25 percent cost share for the DOE award will come from state
and industry groups.
Although BAIHP researchers will focus on factory builders
-- the housing segment not emphasized by the other Building
America teams -- they will also work with site builders.
Industry collaborators on the project include HUD code home
manufacturers (Palm Harbor Homes, Southern Energy Homes, Cavalier
Homes, Fleetwood, Champion and others), modular home manufacturers
(Clayton, Excel, Palm Harbor Homes, Penn Lyon Homes and others), production builders and developers (G.W.
Robinson, Tommy Williams, East Bay, Castle and Cook, Babcock
Ranch, WCI Construction and others) and 18 affiliates of Habitat
for Humanity International in six states. The annual
production of the team members exceeds 100,000 homes.
BAIHP works with these housing producers toward the goal of
saving 30 to 50 percent in annual energy use through a combination
of energy efficiency and on-site energy renewable energy production,
such as electricity from solar panels. The project homes often
feature not only improved energy efficiency but also indoor
air quality, durability, comfort, and “green” construction.
Specific improvements include:
- air tight duct systems
- high efficiency windows
- low VOC products
- durability features
- “cool” roofs
- meticulously designed mechanical systems
- mechanical ventilation.
BAIHP also conducts field and laboratory research -- evaluating
the in-situ performance of homes, the effect of occupant feedback
on energy use, moisture liability of mechanical ventilation
in hot-humid climates, factory-integrated heating, cooling
and water heating systems, photovoltaic integrated roofs and
a new concept called “night cool” that utilizes
the night sky to radiatively cool a building.
The BAIHP team, led by FSEC, collaborates with UCF's Industrial
Engineering program (Orlando) and researchers and energy experts
from Calcs-Plus (Venice, FL), Florida Home Energy and Resources
Organization (Gainesville, FL), Oregon Department of Energy (Salem,
OR), the Residential Energy Services Network (nationwide),
the University of Texas at Austin School of Architecture and
the Washington State University Energy Program (Olympia, WA).
The Florida Department of Environmental Protection's Florida
Energy Office has committed significant matching funding.
The map below shows the locations of most of the BAIHP project
partners. We estimate that since project inception in 1999, we
have assisted in the construction of more than 135,000 homes
that are saving their homeowners more than $17,700,000 annually
in energy costs.
For summaries of some of the key projects conducted by BAIHP,
click on the titles listed below:
More details on the complete BAIHP project can be seen in
their annual report at http://www.baihp.org/pubs/finalrpt/index.htm. Biographies of the 18 researchers are available at http://www.baihp.org/researchers/index.htm.
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