The High Performance Window Volume Purchase Program Webinar (text version)

The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), the Alliance to Save Energy, the National Fenestration Rating Council, and Energetics Incorporated held a Webinar presenting an overview of DOE's High Performance Windows Volume Purchase Program (WVP) from the Building Technologies Program. The Webinar detailed the energy- and cost-saving benefits of high-performance windows and low-E storm windows for commercial buildings, defined opportunities for down-sizing HVAC systems, and provided a perspective from NFRC and guide users on how to purchase windows through the program.

Below is the text version of the Webinar titled "The High Performance Windows Volume Purchase Program Webinar," originally presented on October 12, 2011. In addition to this text version of the audio, you can view the presentation slides and a recording of the Webinar (WMV 69 MB).

Terry Mapes:
The long-range goal that DOE has set for windows programs is a U-factor of .10, which is an R-10. Some examples of how they might approach this are vacuum glazing and advanced dynamic glazing. I believe a little later in the program, you'll see a little bit from the Alliance to Save Energy on advanced dynamic glazing, but, generally, the long-range goal, as I said, is to get to an R-10, so this is only one step in that path. And, again, at the market-based approach, that is an alternative to codes and standards. It's a voluntary program where the manufacturers take part in the program. They're free to leave or re-enter the program at any time they like.

Some of the different forms of technical support which DOE gives; Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has an absolute slew of software programs that have been developed at the behest of DOE, such things as Com-Fen, Res-Fen, Windows Therm. Like I said, there's a lot of different software programs related to analyzing windows which are available free to the public. The National Fenestration Rating Council, which receives about one-sixth of its operating budget from DOE funding, and the Efficient Windows Collaborative, we have members of that organization that are here and they'll give part of the presentation later. Anyone who wants to sort of find out about some things that they don't know about windows, I would highly recommend going to this website. It's a terrific resource. For anyone who is from a beginner to an expert will probably find things at this website which are useful to them

The contact person, the head of the program is Marc LaFrance at DOE. You can see his contact information here, and I'm going to go ahead and pass this on now to Nils Petermann, from the Alliance to Save Energy. Hello, Nils? Are you ready, Nils?
Nils Petermann:
Oh, Terry?

Terry Mapes:
Yes.

Nils Petermann:
Can you hear me all right now?

Terry Mapes:
Yes, I can hear you.

Nils Petermann:
Okay. Fine. So, I hope everyone can see my screen all right at this point.

Terry Mapes:
I can see it fine. It looks good.

Nils Petermann:
Okay. Perfect. Well, good. So, I'll just have a few slides before handing over to Ray McGowan, who is going to talk about energy ratings and certification for windows. Just in my few slides, I will concentrate on the commercial sector since that obviously fits with today's audience, and mostly I'll be talking about windows but a little bit about storm windows, as well. So, moving on, it's an indicator of how much heat from the sun passes through the window. So, that can be important during the summertime, when it comes to cooling loads, but also during the wintertime when the sun's heat can offset some of the heating needs. All of those energy ratings are required to be rated and certified according to NFRC standards by the codes, and Ray is going to talk about that in more detail.

So, energy codes basically provide the baseline for energy efficiency, and commercial energy codes differ quite a bit from the residential side of the code. As I'm sure everyone is aware, there is a distinction between buildings of – well, residential buildings of up to three stories, on the one hand, and, on the other hand, we have commercial buildings plus residential buildings of more than three stories. So, all of those commercial buildings and high-rise residential buildings have somewhat different window performance requirements than low-rise residential buildings. Now, what you see on the slide here are the requirements in some of the more recent energy codes, the 2009 IECC or ASHRAE standard 90.1-2007. Now, there are newer versions of either code available now – the 2012 IECC and the 2010 ASHRAE standard – but those two codes that are shown here on the slide are the ones that are currently commonly adopted across the United States at the current time, so I just wanted to give a snapshot of that.

What we're going to concentrate on here are climate zones 4 and upward, meaning Climate Zone 4, which is a fairly mixed climate, with both heating and cooling requirements, and the more northern climate zones, where heating becomes the most important space conditioning energy use. So, the program that we're talking about, the High Performance Windows Volume Purchase Program, is really focusing on the U-factor as the primary energy efficiency measure here, since, in a cold climate, the U-factor determines not only how much heat escapes out of the windows, but also the optimum comfort due to warmer surface temperatures of windows that have a lower U-factor. Now, the most common current energy codes differentiate between non-metal and metal-frame windows for commercial buildings. There are different U-factor requirements for the two classes of windows, and a reason for that is that with a non-metal frame, substantially lower U-factors can typically be achieved. Certainly, it's not only a factor of the frame what U-factor can be achieved, but the frame plays an important role, as you can see from the graphs here.

So, the upper graph shows typical U-factors with double-pane, low-E glass, and there are substantial differences, not only depending on the frame material, but also, when it comes to metal frame windows, operable and fixed windows can have quite different U-factors, and the main reason for that is with operable windows, a larger percentage of the window area will be frame-and-sash components, which have a higher heat transfer rate than high efficiency glazing, such as double-pane, low-E glazing. Now, energy codes are typically – the requirements for those codes in mixed and northern climates are typically set so that double-pane, low-E glazing can allow the windows to qualify. What the DOE High Performance Windows program does is set more stringent requirements that are voluntary requirements, but, if these requirements are met, it can typically be met with triple-pane, low E glazing. It's not nearly as easy to meet those sets of criteria with double glazing, and as you will see in the lower graph, pretty much the way the requirements are set with some of the most efficient operable windows, either on the metal frame side or on the non-metal frame side, those requirements can be met.

Now, the dotted yellow line that you'll see at a .22 U-factor is the volume purchase program's criteria for residential-type windows, so for windows that would be installed most typically in low-rise residential buildings, and most of those windows are vinyl-framed, fiberglass-framed or wood-framed so that substantially lower U factors can be achieved than what you would typically see with metal frame windows. Now, the program also includes different sets of criteria for commercial grade windows, which most commonly are metal frame windows, which would be aluminum with breaks or similar assemblies, and these U-factor requirements are at a higher level than the U-factor requirements for residential-type windows, and higher meaning that actually the U-factor requirements are less stringent.

So, you'll see for an AW performance class window, which is an architectural window, the requirement is the .32 U-factor, and that can be met by metal frame windows, albeit those would typically be triple-pane windows. Alternatively, it's possible to meet those criteria with a non-metal frame double-pane window, but then it needs to be said that not as many non-metal frame windows achieve an AW structural performance class. So, that's just as a basic overview of the type of performance we're targeting with this program, and a comparison to what typical code requirements are nowadays.

All right. Now, on the energy performance side, these graphs here show some simulated numbers, simulated EnergyPlus, for a typical 950-square-foot apartment unit, and you will see that energy use, depending on the window type, differs not only on the heating side, but also on the cooling side. Actually, I could say particularly on the cooling side. The reason why cooling energy use differs quite a bit, depending on the window choice, is that low E coatings and multiple glass panes all reduce the passive heat gain, and that's a good thing during the summertime. Actually, in commercial buildings, it's most of the year reducing solar heat gain is advantageous, but certainly the free heat gain during the wintertime is reduced from low-E coatings and using triple-pane instead of double-pane that would reduce some of that free heat gain, so it would offset some of the heating benefits that a lower U factor would provide. However, everything added up throughout the whole year, a lower U-factor plus a lower solar heat gain coefficient with more efficient glazing means that temperatures stay more stable, that peak heating and cooling loads are lower, and that it's quite a bit easier to manage the heating and cooling energy use in a building.

Now, more stable temperatures also mean better comfort for the occupants, and, during the wintertime, that's mainly a function of the U-factor. In many old buildings where single glazing is still used, reducing that U-factor is a priority. Now, we are aware that window replacement is an expensive endeavor and, oftentimes, quite labor-intensive due to the need to remove existing windows. Storm windows are an alternative to window replacement that, in many cases, make sense, particularly with an old building stock, where double-hung windows are used in many of the old commercial buildings or apartment buildings in Chicago, New York, and elsewhere. Storm windows can both reduce the heat transfer through conduction, but also reduce air leakage through those windows.

What you'll see here on this slide are typical U-factor values comparing a single-pane aluminum window as you would still find in many of the older building stock north of the country, compared to a combination of single-pane aluminum windows plus a storm window, or even plus a low-E storm window. So, the lowest U-factor of a combination of single-pane plus storm window can be achieved if the storm window includes low-E glazing. That's simply a hard coat of low-E is applied to the storm window's glass, reducing the heat transfer further than a regular storm window would be able to achieve.

Now, whether highly insulating windows or storm windows are used, the heat loss through the windows would be reduced in either way, and more comfortable interior conditions would be created that way. That is important not only for the benefit of the occupants directly, but also it can benefit building design. Oftentimes, heating units are placed near the windows in order to prevent uncomfortably cold conditions at the windows, so perimeter heating, meaning a heating register placed underneath the windows or anywhere near the windows, is a typical means of reducing the discomfort that you would get from the surface of windows cooling down too much during the wintertime.

Now, with highly insulating windows, it might not be necessary to include perimeter heating near the windows. There may be ways to significantly reduce the cost of the heating design, and an example of that would be the Cambria Office Facility, with some data shown here, which is an office building in Ebensburg, Pennsylvania where design temperatures are around about 20°F, and the designers determined that with triple-pane windows that have U-factor of roughly around .25, a perimeter heating system would not be necessary. Now, the incremental cost of those windows was around $15,000.00, but even the upfront savings were already more substantial than the incremental cost of those highly energy-efficient windows. So, in that case, it actually led to an upfront savings just simply by having a more energy-efficient design, and, of course, energy savings come on top of that.

So, in this case, the criteria for sufficient comfort without perimeter heating were to keep the surface temperature of the windows at less than 10°F of the average room temperature. So, if the room temperature is around about 70 or 72 degrees, they really seek to keep the surface temperature of the windows at 62°F, or higher than that. That is pretty much in line with what comfort standards like ISO 7730 or ASHRAE standard 55 would recommend. It always depends on assumptions such as how close people sit to the windows and what size window you have, and also how stringent designers want to be in their comfort criteria, but the PassivHaus standard in Europe has set criteria that are pretty consistent with what was decided for the Cambria Office Facility, so keeping the surface temperature of a window within 10 degrees of the average room temperature, that's where a pretty reliable comfort picture emerges. As you can see on the graph here, with highly insulating windows of a U-factor of around .2, those comfort conditions can be provided, even at zero degrees outdoors. With somewhat higher outdoor temperatures, a higher U factor can achieve similar comfort.

So, that was my little overview of the importance of a low U factor, and now the solar heat gain coefficient is actually also an at least equally important factor on the commercial side, since at least with many commercial building types, there are substantial glazing areas that can easily lead to overheating, even in a heating dominated climate, and, in addition to that, particularly office buildings have high internal heat gains through equipment, people, and so on. So, controlling solar heat gain is definitely important. Now, the energy codes typically limit solar heat gain coefficient in a northern climate at .4, and the commercial grade windows that are included in the volume purchase program usually provide an even lower solar heat gain coefficient due to the use of triple glazing, which really limits the available solar heat gain, so that is helpful on the cooling side. Of course, during the wintertime, there might be some opportunities for passive solar gain that are not taken advantage of with a lower solar heat gain coefficient. So, alternatively, to a lower SHGC, one could design a building with either operable shading or with permanent projections. But, in general, controlling solar heat gain coefficient is an important factor for commercial building design.

All right. With that, I'll hand it over to Ray McGowan, who is going to talk a little more about how U-factor and solar heat gain coefficient are actually determined.

Walt Zalis:
We're actually going to hand it back off to Terry, and then we're going to hand it back over to Ray from there. But for now, I'm going to make Terry the presenter, and Terry will give a little bit more information on how the program is formed and how to buy products through the program, and then we'll get to Ray's portion.

Terry Mapes:
Okay. Hopefully, this will go a little more smoothly than the last time. I just wanted to give you some background information on the Windows Volume Purchase Program itself, how it was conceived, and I'll give you a website walkthrough, as well, when we're finished here. As I mentioned earlier in the presentation, this is a market transformation program. The goal is to increase the availability of high performance products. It's a voluntary program, as I said, to avoid codes and standards. We feel that the approach really has two main goals. The single greatest barrier to purchasing these products is the cost barrier, and we feel that the two-way approach to overcoming that cost barrier is through creating competition, and by increasing demand, and creating competition comes from bringing the manufacturers who have the products together on a website, which I'm going to show you a little bit later, and that by showing their prices, they will know each other's prices and it'll all be out in the open and give them a chance to compete with each other on those prices, and then the other way is by raising demand. And we raise demand by educating the consumers about our products, going out there and letting builders, architects, remodelers, and even homeowners know that these products are out there, and as they begin to ask for them, the demand begins to rise, and then the prices will, in effect, go down.

We originally received more than 30 bids for Phase II. There have been two phases. We're in Phase II right now. The program itself began about a year and a half ago with Phase I. Spring of this year, we launched Phase II. We made a few changes. Essentially, for this Phase II that we're in right now, we received more than 30 bids. We process those bids to verify that the products actually met the requirements of the program, and now we have I believe 28 manufacturers currently listed on the website. Look at what some of those requirements for all the products are, and you could be guaranteed that every single product you see on the website will meet these requirements. For the high performance windows, the primary windows, the U-factor varies depending on what grade of window it is. There are residential and light commercial windows. The U-factor requirement for those is .20 for fixed windows and .22 for operable windows.

For commercial windows and architectural windows, you can see there it's slightly different because the structural requirements for commercial grade windows are usually a little bit higher, and many times they have to use aluminum and so it's a little harder to meet the requirements. Same thing with air leakage and condensation resistance requirements. Something that's very, very important to mention is that certification programs are required for all the products you see here. Every one of the manufacturers have to take part in a certification program through both NFRC or one of the other four programs here for structural certifications – AAMA, WDMA, Keystone, and NAMI – and the reason this is very important is that these organizations act as an independent third party, and they make unannounced audits into the factories of the manufacturers.

They come in, and the manufacturer must let them look at anything that they ask to look at, and what they do is they make sure that the manufacturer is continuing to produce all these windows the same way that they've been tested to, and this is the guarantee to the consumer that as long as these manufacturers are part of these certification programs, that those products will always meet the standards that they've been tested to. We also require a warranty there of 20 years on glass, 10 years on non-glass parts; everything has to be tested according to the North American Fenestration Standard. Slightly different requirements for low-E storm windows there, but kind of a similar approach – certification and warranties, et cetera – are required for .22 or less.

Look at the website real quick, and, as I said, I'm going to give you a walkthrough of this website in just a moment, but I want to mention a couple key points here before we begin. Right now, many of the responses that we've gotten to the website, and virtually all of them, actually, have been homeowners. While our original focus and our current focus is and always has been contractors, builders, remodelers, et cetera – those who can buy in volume purchases, so to speak – there's a variety of reasons for this, and I'll talk about that as we make our way through the website. The sales through August of this year, since the beginning of the program – and that's been about, as I say, maybe a little less than a year and a half now it's been – over 5,000 windows at about $1.6 million in sales. I've got some screenshots, but I'm going to go ahead and just bring up the website right now.

This is the homepage of the website. As you come here, you'll see there's some links across the top for some other resources. There's a complete vendor listing, if you don't want to make your way through the search. There's a lot of information here. We tried to keep it from being too busy. Too much information makes it difficult to sort of navigate the page. The most important feature here, really, is over here to the left you'll see this series of dropdown boxes. A potential buyer can come in here and enter information about a particular type of window that they're looking for. For example, you can choose the window type – single-hung, double-hung, et cetera. As an example, I'm going to go ahead and pull up double-hung, which is one of the most common types. Construction type, if it's new or retrofit. If for some reason you don't know, you can always just leave anything blank by default, so I'm going to go ahead and leave this blank.

United inches is width plus height, so let's say we're looking for a standard, I don't know, 3-foot by 4-foot window, 36x48 inches, that's 84, so we're going to put this in the 81-90 category. Structural class, if you're interested in something other than homes, which are residential, obviously, if it's small, two-story apartment buildings, or something like that, you might be interested in light commercial, et cetera, but we're going to keep this by default so it bring up everything. Performance grades, this has to do with the structural integrity of the windows. The minimum for our program is 25. Once you start getting up to commercial grade, your mid-rises and such, it's probably around 50 to 60, or so. Again, I'm just going to leave that one blank for right now, and we're going to go ahead and just choose a state. It also has the ten Canadian provinces in here, as well. I'm going to go ahead and take – gosh, we'll just say Massachusetts, and then you hit Submit Search, and what happens is it filters through all of the products in our database and brings them up. Because of an agreement we have with the vendors, it comes up originally in random order because we don't want to give advantages to those who start with the letter A or B, or something like that. You can, however, just go ahead and hit this Vendor right up here, and this will alphabetize it for. You can hit it again and, obviously, it will go in reverse order.

Probably another one that's important to look at is price, so this will bring up the order of the type of windows that you were just looking for, from lowest price to highest price. You get a chance to see the range of all the prices there, and this, again, is just the ones who are shipping to Massachusetts. So, if you wanted to, you could look at this and say, "Well, you know, this is a little bit too big." I want to get this down a little bit more, so I'm going to go ahead and I'm just going to go in here and say, "Just the ones that are 50 or greater," so you can continue to add to the criteria that you've already entered, and you can see that list goes down a little bit further now. Now you can start to look at it and go, "Okay. Well, gosh. What are we looking at here?" You can go back and change it and say, "Well, maybe not Massachusetts. How about Florida, instead?" etc., etc. So, the idea here is that you can enter whatever criteria you want with these windows, and you'll be able to go through and find, just from the database that we've got, the kind of products you're looking for.

Each one of these vendors' names over here is a link to their actual page. I'm going to go ahead and pull up Gilkey. Once again, one of the requirements that we have is that, rather than just going to a generic homepage or something for their company, they need to actually have information about these R-5 windows up front somewhere, and you can see right here they've got it right out here where you can see it, about the program itself. Most of these will probably ask you to leave some sort of contact information, et cetera. Feel free to do that, and, in fact, I would encourage you to actually go through the channels that they've provided on their website, on their link, because if you try to just contact the company yourself or try to go to a local dealer, there's a good chance that they may not know anything about the program. It's the people on the other side of this contact, on the other side of this link right here, that actually know about the program, so just be careful of that.

Let's see. I'll try to go back to the homepage. If there's some sort of suggestion you want to make or something, we have contact information right here. Once again, you can get the complete vendor listing right here, rather than going through the searching. As you can see, the company we just looked at, Gilkey, is right there. It takes you to the same link. Just to let you know, the prices that have been entered by the manufacturers in here are generally pretty close to MSRP, which is manufacturer's suggested retail price. Contractors, et cetera, can probably get better prices from their normal distributor than they can from this website. That's one of the reasons why we've had mostly homeowners using the website, but that's okay.

What we would still suggest is that you can come here and do exactly what we did before, and you can take a look and do some comparative shopping. Let's say you're a builder who uses Kasson and Keller, or something like that. You can look in here and say, "Well gosh, there are three or four guys above Kasson and Keller. I might want to contact my distributor and see if he's got products from these other companies." So, you can still do point-by-point comparisons, even if you can get better prices than this from your distributor. But homeowners, these are generally going to be the MSRP prices, maybe even slight discounts that are being offered by the manufacturers.

So, back to the presentation, and this is all information that I just gave you. We also wanted to give you a little information about incentive programs. This is one of the biggest targets for the program in the upcoming fiscal year. There are currently around 200 or so incentive programs offered by utility companies that directly target window products or window attachments, or say low E films, or something like that. Out of that entire list, only three actually have incentive targets for windows that perform above ENERGY STAR, so a very, very small percentage of those. The Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance is working with its members up here in the Oregon/Washington/Idaho/Montana area, and they're putting together a tier structure, which would allow incentives for above ENERGY STAR.

It's a three-tier program that will go even well beyond the high performance products that we've got in here. Energy Trust of Oregon is the only one we know of that actually specifically targets a .22 level or higher, and they spoke to us directly when they were putting together their incentive program to come up with the requirements that they now use. Here's the contact information that we have. Various members of the team, myself and Graham Parker at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory; we're the ones managing the program for DOE. Nils Petermann, who you've already heard, and Neal Humphrey, both from Efficient Windows Collaborative, and Walt Zalis and Myra Sinnott from Energetics are here, as well. So, with that, I'm going to go ahead and pass this on to Ray McGowan.

Ray McGowan:
This is Ray McGowan. Can you hear me?

 

Terry Mapes:
Yeah, the screen looks good, too.

Ray McGowan:
Oh, very good. Okay. Well, I'm Ray McGowan and I'm from the National Fenestration Rating Council, and I'll just talk a little bit about our organization and how some of the Volume Purchase Program energy performance ratings were done on commercial and residential windows. We are a 501(c) (3), an educational nonprofit, and we are not a trade association. That's kind of important. Even though we have mostly manufacturers making up our membership, there are about 800 of our participants, actually. We do have many other kinds of members, like Nils Petermann, for instance, who's a Alliance to Save Energy member, a variety of consultants, academics, all kinds of people, anyone with a fenestration interest, including anyone attending today, if you're interested, you're welcome to join the NFRC and participate in how we develop ratings.

The United States and most of the states make reference to the conversion of 90.1 ASHRAE standards. Some have their own code, as well, but mostly these are actually 90.1, and ENERGY STAR, it's very important. ENERGY STAR references the NFRC ratings, as well, and there is no other way to participate with ENERGY STAR if you want to put a window into the program. And then, finally, USGBC's LEED program on environmental energy design, they make reference to ASHRAE 90.1, which includes a reference to NFRC, so we're indirectly referenced there.

We have an air leakage rating and a condensation resistance rating. Air leakage rating is usually done by other organizations. NFRC is not widely used, and the CR at the bottom there is an informational rating that I've not seen it referenced at any residential rating occasion. Occasionally in commercial specifications, but it's very limited.

Terry Mapes:
Hey, Ray? Ray?

Ray McGowan:
Yes?

Terry Mapes:
You seem to be going in and out, unfortunately. It starts out very clear and then it goes very fuzzy and we can't hear what you're saying.

Ray McGowan:
Is it any better?

Terry Mapes:
I can hear you very clear now. Before, I couldn't tell what you were saying.

Ray McGowan:
Oh, all right. Well, I'll just sit a little closer. Maybe that's the solution. Okay.

Terry Mapes:
Okay.

Ray McGowan:
Well, so the NFRC ratings are the primary energy ratings, or the U factor, as we've discussed a little bit, and notice NFRC 100 – keep that kind of on your mind there for a minute. The VT, the visible transmittance, that's governed by NFRC standard 200, and then the solar heat gain coefficient at the bottom that is governed by NFRC 200, as well. Computer simulations do all the ratings I just mentioned. Lawrence Berkeley National Lab has written a two-dimensional heat transfer program that will simulate the energy performance of commercial and residential windows, and the way it works is the manufacturers submit their drawings and materials through NFRC. They generate the U-factor, solar heat gain, and VT based on that information, and all those numbers are generated at standardize sizes and environmental conditions, so that's very important. We don't use actual size, particular in residential, so it's a standard size for a given window style.

Another thing to keep in mind, its whole product rating, and that's very important, as well. Many times, particularly in the commercial world, you're going to see glass values that cannot be used for ASHRAE. That is incorrect. It needs to be an NFRC whole product rating. I get that question quite frequently. And we do validate the U-factors by doing a physical test. We put a window into a thermal chamber and measure the U-factor physically, and then it is compared to the simulation, and a manufacturer of residential products only has to do one product per product line every four years to get a feel for how many labels are out there, I just heard about 40 million labels went out last year, so this is a pretty – it depends on who you ask, but a relatively small burden on the industry.

This has increased interest in the codes across the country, and the federal government has driven that a little bit. Some of the stimulus money was given to the states on the condition that they step up their code enforcement and also their code references to later code versions, and, also, its owners and buildings actually can realize a little better performance and things if the codes are observed, so we're seeing more and more of that across the country. You have to use window and thermal, plus NFRC certification for the residential products.

We have a new program called CMAST, the Component Modeling Approach Software Tool, that will simulate commercial products, and I'll talk about that a little more later. We have about 150 certificates so far in the commercial world, and we'd like to have, of course, a lot more, and in the commercial world there's a real lack of enforcement of the codes, and we can talk a little bit more about that in a couple minutes here. You can either use the default ratings that are in the codes, which I'll show you in a minute, or you do NFRC ratings, and the defaults are punitive, so anyone in their right mind really wouldn't want to use them. They're very poor ratings. So, again, the rating, the NFRC 100 covers the U-factor.

Walt Zalis:
Hey, Ray? We're kind of losing you again. I'm not sure what could possible be a solution, unless you're moving around a lot, but it's going in and –

Ray McGowan:
No, I'm just trying to – darn it. I'm trying to sit close to here. Okay, is that any better?

Walt Zalis:
I can hear you now.

Ray McGowan:
Okay. All right. So, anyway, I had mentioned NFRC 100 for U factors. You can see for some reason in my presentation, these circles have moved on me. I don't know why. But here's NFRC 100, written into the code, and that governs the U-factor, and then here's NFRC 200, again, written into the code, and that covers solar heat gain coefficient. So, sometimes there's confusion as to how you're supposed to satisfy the code for windows with NFRC 100 and 200, and call that very clearly.

Walt Zalis:
We're losing you again, Ray, unfortunately.

Ray McGowan:
I'll try and sit up close again. Is that any better?

Walt Zalis:
Yeah, okay. I can hear you again now. Just try to stay there.

Ray McGowan:
Okay. Thank you. All right, so this is a bid report from NFRC component that is a conversional certificate for a window product, and it can be used during the bidding process, and it gives the fundamental information that we've been talking about. Here are three different types of windows. Here's the U, solar heat gain, and VT associated with each of the windows shown from this certificate.

The LEED program requires ASHRAE 90.107 and requires NFRC 100 and 200 very clearly. So, literally, all LEED applications should have NFRC certificates. Unfortunately, we know that's not really true, and we've talked to the Green Building Council a little bit about this. They don't like to drill down too much and find out exactly how codes are satisfied. They do assume that the codes are satisfied for their applications, but we're hoping that LEED maybe can push a little more, maybe spot check a little more. This is a new program that NFRC implemented in January …

Terry Mapes:
We're losing you again. Oh, there you came back. You came back.

Ray McGowan:
All right. I'm up close. I'm about five inches away from my computer. Okay, so this is a commercial product rating program. We began this program in January of 2010 to rate commercial windows, and so I'll give you an overview of how to use this component. The glazing component is simply a layer of glass, a frame component, and the spacer is simply the spacer material used, along with a sealer. What happens in the program is you assemble these components into sort of sub-assemblies. You combine them together in the program, and then you would take a spacer and combine it with some sealer, and so you'd have three assemblies then. So, that's sort of the conceptual overview of how the CMA works.

Walt Zalis:
We lost you again, Ray. We lost you.

Ray McGowan:
Sorry. Can you hear me now?

Walt Zalis:
Yeah, I can hear you now.

Ray McGowan:
Okay. So, again, the manufacturers supply information for the components, as I mentioned. The specifying authority, we have a name. That is the person who would generate the project. They would supply the general parameters for the building and what kind of product they would want. The accredited simulation lab, I mentioned earlier that we do have NFRC accredited simulators that test CMA, as well. We have accredited testing labs for CMA, as well, just like residential. We have approved calculation entity. That's a different term that hasn't been used so far. Basically, that's the person who runs the CMAST tool to make the final calculation for the product, and then we have a third party that takes a look at the ACE's calculations and periodically reviews them, but that's another quality control step in the process.

Right now, a lot of manufacturers are generating their own ratings for the moment. They are independently inspected in a fairly rigorous fashion, but since the program is just starting, they're serving as the SA for the moment. Those of you on the call, you can go to our website and download the software, and you yourselves could be specifying authorities, as well. It has been accredited by the NFRC and makes the final calculation for the window product, so we at NFRC staff provide training, I've done some training, and then we periodically spot check the ACE calculations to make sure they're accurate. Are you still hearing me okay?

Walt Zalis:
Yeah, right now you sound really good. It's just seems whenever you move away, it starts to get real fuzzy.

Ray McGowan:
Okay, I'll stick close. All right.

Walt Zalis:
Stay there.

Ray McGowan:
I'm not moving now. I'm very close now. All right. Manufacturers of the spacers and frames spot check before they go into the –

Walt Zalis:
Wait –

Ray McGowan:
– Primary databases of CMAST.

Walt Zalis:
– There we go.

Ray McGowan:
Okay, and then –

Walt Zalis:
Yeah, now –

Ray McGowan:
– The users back here – are you okay?

Walt Zalis:
Now you sound great, if you could stay right there.

Ray McGowan:
All right. Okay, very good. So, again, the data gets inspected, spot-checked before it goes into the CMAST. Back here is a depiction of the users. They can generate the preliminary bid certificate, and then, when they finalize the project, you're through the bidding process, the ACE would finalize the calculations, and then, finally, the CMA legal certificate would become live. It's posted on our website in PDF form, and the public can access it at no charge, or no user IDs or passwords. It's simply available to the public once the certificate has been generated.

The CMA software tool, as I mentioned, it maintains libraries of the component data. That's continually updated. When you work with it, you would define your project – name, address, building size, things like that would go into it – and, again, you would assemble the components and calculate the ratings. I'll start over here. If you click this area, we get a dropdown of the frame assembly that you've created, and then you would select that. You would select the product type. You can select actual size here. I'll come back to that in a minute. You can select the center glazing assembly here that you've created in another panel, and then you select the spacer and seal assembly here, as well. Again, if you were to click here, you would get a dropdown and you would select assemblies that you've named.

So, those are the three components that we talked about. You simply click Calculate down here, and you get your NFRC rating standard size, solar heat gain, VT, and then you get an actual size rating, which the industry was extremely interested in for years, and finally NFRC is able to offer that. Remember I mentioned you can put the actual size of the window product here, and it'll produce the U-factor, solar heat gain, and VT for that size. So, that's pretty good information, particularly if you do building simulations. And, also, when you're working with this, lots of error messages can come up and prevent you from doing something wrong when you're generating your calculations. It's very user-friendly. It's a rather straightforward program, I think.

Walt Zalis:
We're losing you again, Ray. Is there a landline you can use? Can you hear me, Ray?

Ray McGowan:
Oh, I'm sorry. Well, yes, I could do that. Okay, hold on. I'm sorry. I was thinking of the computer. I'm speaking through my computer. All right, if you can give me about a minute here, I'm going to have to hang up and call back.

Terry Mapes:
I apologize to all of those that are on the webinar right now. We'll make sure that all of our e mail addresses are available for questions after this, and we'll make sure this entire presentation is available online afterwards, as well.

Terry Mapes:
Just one more moment and Ray should be back on.

Ray McGowan:
Hello. I'm back. Is this better?

Terry Mapes:
Yeah, we can hear you now. Yes.

Ray McGowan:
All right. Well, I apologize to everyone. I was speaking through my computer, and I guess it just wasn't a good enough connection over the wireless here. All right, so I'll resume, and I was talking about the label certificates that the CMAST program generates, and a nice, new feature of the CMAST is that it generates actual size product performance, and you'll see here it says non-certified performance at actual size. Additionally, these files here, you can click on this and quickly download a text file with dependent data for each product type, or I'm sorry, for each window product, and that can be imported directly into EnergyPlus. So, that's great for building energy savings. That's a new feature.

So, that brings me to the end of my presentation. Again, that's just a quick overview of NFRC ratings, how they're referenced in the codes, and a little bit about the new commercial certification program we have, and you can go to our website at any time and there's loads of information on everything I presented. You can go there and download the software, and you can immediately become a specifying authority, and you can configure windows and generate U-factor and solar heat gain. Also, please follow us up with any questions you might have, and we'd be glad to help you out. Here's some contact information for me. Again, I apologize for the connection. I should have switched over earlier, but I hope you caught most of it.

Terry Mapes:
I know there may not be many questions right now, but if folks do have questions, you can utilize the Raise Your Hand function on your toolbar there on the right for the webinar, and I can un-mute you if you have a question. Also, if you would like to follow up with any of us with an e mail, we'll be making this presentation available with all of our e mail addresses listed through the Commercial Building Energy Alliance, and you can also contact us that way, as well. So, I'll see if there's any hands that are being raised, and, if there are, I can un-mute you. If not, we will conclude the webinar. I'll give you a second to raise any hands. I think Grayson has a question, and you should be un-muted now, so if you can ask your question, go ahead.

Grayson:
Yes. I may have missed this in the presentation, but I thought that that CMA modeling tool might be useful for determining the U values for building simulation. Where is that available? Where can I find that? Is that just through NFRC or where can I find that tool?

Ray McGowan:
Yes, please go to our website.

Grayson:
Okay.

Ray McGowan:
You can hear me, I assume? Correct?

Grayson:
Yes.

Ray McGowan:
Go to NFRC.org, and then you should be able to – you'll see a component modeling approach on the homepage. You can click into that and it'll show you how to download the software and then begin to generate ratings.

Grayson:
Fantastic. Thank you.

Ray McGowan:
And please, call me at any time and I'll be glad to assist you.

Terry Mapes:
Okay. Were there any further questions out there right now? All right, I do see one. I think Stan Kumar has a question. If you can hear me and are on the line, go ahead and ask it. If not, I'll follow up with you afterwards. He might not be on the line right now. If there are any other questions, please go ahead and use the Raise Your Hand function. I'm going to give it one more minute. Okay, I don't see any more questions. Again, if you'd like to follow up with us, I'll put up our e mail addresses once again. I believe you already have Ray's right there, but you can find ours – it'll be right here. There's all of our information. If anyone has any questions and would like to follow up with us, please do so, and with that, I'm going to conclude the webinar. Sorry about the technical difficulties. We will be getting a copy of this presentation up online as soon as possible through the Commercial Building Energy Alliance. Thank you for joining us. Bye.

[End of Audio]