June 19, 2024

Open-Source “Unique Building Identifier” Can Help Track and Reduce Energy Use and Emissions

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) scientists have actually produced software that utilizes geographical data to develop an open-source grid reference system, offering an exact approach to designate a structures location. Ultimately, the DOE prepares for that this free-to-use system, called the Unique Building Identifier (UBID), would make it possible for programs to better track and decrease energy usage and emissions from buildings.
” We desire to decarbonize our buildings nationwide by making them more energy efficient,” stated Harry Bergmann, innovation supervisor in DOEs Building Technologies Office. “To do that, the very first thing we require to comprehend is exactly which buildings we are speaking about, and what are the energy-consuming assets within them. Thats an important initial step to knowing how to minimize the energy use and emissions from these buildings.”
Instead, the developers of UBID set the software to utilize a basic language to state the location of a structure, using a code that correlates to longitude and latitude coordinates. Other m aps can be utilized in conjunction with UBID data.
The information can be understood by an utility company, structure owner, building manager, or other users for whom precise structure data is necessary. Cities are progressively requiring buildings to comply with energy and emission policy or laws.
Codes, not addresses, for residential or commercial property
For a structure, land parcel, or any other two-dimensional footprint, UBID designates a code string of numbers and letters based on an open-source grid referral system. UBID uses this system to find the center of gravity of a shape– a building, for example– and after that uses the center to calculate the north, east, south, and west sides. The code strings reflect these limits and can be read and written by UBID users.
UBID is quick. It can discover and produce identifiers duplicate records in 5 to 10 minutes for a typical dataset of about 1 million records. And UBID is complimentary. PNNL designers decided to make the software application open-source and available for the best possible circulation.
UBIDs basic, uniform format can serve functions beyond exact geospatial location, said PNNL computer system researcher Mark Borkum.
” A city can appoint UBIDs to their building stock and likewise assign those UBIDs to their energy benchmarking data,” stated Borkum, who has worked more than three years establishing UBID. “Now they can cross reference all of that information more quickly– and precisely– and have access to energy use information.”
Assisting lower the carbon footprint
UBIDs potential benefits for event and examining energy data are among the software applications biggest qualities, said Borkum.
” Policy makers around the globe have said cutting greenhouse gas emissions will be an essential element to resolve environment change,” Borkum said. “Energy use in buildings– as well as the systems to develop that energy– will require to be tracked as part of that initiative. Precise building location information will be necessary for contrasts and management. UBID will supply that data.”
Energy-tracking programs consist of DOEs Audit Template– established at PNNL– and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agencys ENERGY STAR Portfolio Manager, stated Sarah Newman, a PNNL data researcher. Audit Template can deal with UBID to support tracking structure assets and audits. Portfolio Manager includes another choice to gather energy-use details for sharing and analysis by energy managers and others. Likewise, the majority of cities that have implemented energy benchmarking programs utilize Portfolio Manager as a compliance tool.
UBIDs compatibility with energy-tracking programs is an incredible property, stated Newman, the group lead of the Analytics and Tools team in PNNLs Buildings and Connected Systems group. “This will assist cities that are attempting to carry out energy benchmarking programs for their communitys structure inventory,” she said.
Attracting cities, nonprofits, organizations
A number of city governments have used totally free, open-source UBID, consisting of Washington, D.C.; Miami-Dade County; and Portland, Maine.
UBID also is interesting business and nonprofits, Newman said. LightBox, an information company understood for its real estate analytics, participated in the accelerator for the UBID task as an early adopter and tester of the method.
” Since we own across the country collections of parcel borders and building footprints, we are a natural partner for UBID,” stated Zach Wade, vice president of data at LightBox. “Our borders are needed for computing UBIDs at scale across the country, and we have currently done so across our entire structure footprint database. We are helpful of open requirements to solve realty data connection issues, thus our close partnership with PNNL on this effort.”
LightBox is assisting the Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation and the National Low Income Housing Coalition. LightBox is assigning a UBID to the federally helped rental residential or commercial properties within the National Housing Preservation Database. The database of 80,000 residential or commercial properties, kept by the non-profits, assists neighborhoods preserve their stock of budget friendly and public real estate.
” Assigning UBIDs to cost effective houses in the NHPD could assist scientists match them to other administrative information sources and better understand their proximity to disaster danger, transit alternatives, or other neighborhood features,” said Kelly McElwain, a Public and Affordable Housing Research Corporation senior research expert.
Borkum and Newman brought together LightBox and the real estate nonprofits in November 2020. They are collaborating with Wade to assign UBIDs for the National Housing Preservation Database dataset.
Free to the masses, in 4 shows languagesEarly in UBIDs advancement, Borkum stated, PNNL software application designers chose to make UBID complimentary on the open-source platform GitHub. This way, there would be the largest possible usage of the program. On top of that, to date, UBID has been implemented in 4 shows languages to further boost its reach and adoption, with more applications for other programming languages planned.
” Our objective is for UBID to reach the largest amount of users in the best geographical spectrum to have the utmost clarity for building area and use,” said Borkum. “In the not-too-distant future, UBID will play a significant function in handling energy performance in buildings.”
The open-source variation of UBID can be discovered on this GitHub site.
Reference: “Unique Building Identifier: A natural key for developing data matching and its energy applications” by Na Wang, Alex Vlachokostas, Mark Borkum, Harry Bergmann and Sarah Zaleski, 1 February 2019, Energy and Buildings.DOI: 10.1016/ j.enbuild.2018.11.052.

The Department of Energy anticipates this free-to-use system– Unique Building Identifier– will enable programs to better track and minimize energy use and emissions from buildings.” We desire to decarbonize our structures nationwide by making them more energy efficient,” said Harry Bergmann, innovation supervisor in DOEs Building Technologies Office. The data can be understood by an energy provider, building owner, structure supervisor, or other users for whom precise building data is essential. UBID utilizes this system to find the center of mass of a shape– a building, for example– and then utilizes the center to calculate the north, east, south, and west sides.” Since we own across the country collections of parcel borders and structure footprints, we are a natural partner for UBID,” said Zach Wade, vice president of data at LightBox.

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
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Digital maps and their multiple functions are a marvel. Theyll get you from point A to point B. Theyll even get you to points C and D and to places in between while suggesting the best neighborhood purchase office, coffee, and pizza supplies.
However theyre not ideal. Not by a long shot.
Precision-minded users are perplexed by maps that display buildings without specific addresses. Or perhaps they show an accurate address, however it is used to many buildings. Perhaps the structure has no address at all.