The U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Building Technologies Program will offer a Webinar on Feb. 16 from noon to 1:30 p.m. EST titled "Going With the Flow: Designing High-Performance Buildings with EnergyPlus."

To facilitate the energy-smart design of high-performance buildings, the DOE has created EnergyPlus software to help users predict energy flows in commercial and residential buildings prior to construction. EnergyPlus, the DOE's fully integrated building, HVAC, and renewable-energy simulation program, models building heating, cooling, lighting, ventilating, and other energy flows, as well as water. The program includes simulation capabilities, such as time steps of less than an hour, modular system and plant integration with heat balance-based zone simulation, multizone airflow, thermal comfort, water use, natural ventilation, and photovoltaic systems.

OpenStudio, DOE's free plugin for the Google SketchUp 3D drawing program, helps create and edit the building geometry in EnergyPlus input files or launch EnergyPlus simulations and view the results in SketchUp.

The Webinar will focus on the importance of precise energy simulations in the drive for high-performance buildings and will provide an overview of the features and capabilities of EnergyPlus software and the OpenStudio plugin.

Presented by Dru Crawley, PhD, commercial-buildings team lead for the DOE’s Building Technologies Program, the Webinar is free of charge, but attendees must register in advance to obtain the URL and password for logging on via the Internet and the phone number to connect to the audio.