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2018 HVAC Systems Selection

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For students at schools completing a dedicated HVAC or building environmental systems curriculum. The project encourages students with a solid HVAC base to use a life-cycle cost process to compare and select the building HVAC system(s) as well as incorporate the sustainability process promoted by ASHRAE by integrating ASHRAE Standard 189.1 - Standard for the Design of High-Performance Green Buildings.

The HVAC Systems Selection Category should be viewed as an "advanced" version of the HVAC Design Calculations Category. This is appropriate for students in a multi-course HVAC curriculum of study. The student design team is required to perform a life cycle cost analysis to compare and select a mechanical system that provides the lowest life cycle cost, all while staying within a set construction budget.

Similar to the HVAC Design Calculations category, each team is required to determine the building's cooling and heating loads in order to determine the required capacities of the building's HVAC systems: cooling and heating plants, air distribution system and equipment, and hydronic/steam piping systems as determined by the team.

Refer to HVAC System Design Calculations section for design assumptions to be used for both the System Selection category and Design Calculations.

Each student team should conduct an analysis that includes at least these elements:

  • Three (3) different HVAC Systems must be compared and teams must demonstrate how well they meet the needs of the owner by showing multiple examples.
  • Teams must show that they understand the criteria of evaluation and explain how they will rank the three different systems.
  • Team will then have 15 minutes to sell the owner on why the design they have chosen best meets his requirements.
  • Student teams should demonstrate how the building complies by explaining and showing multiple examples related to ASHRAE Standard 90.1, 55 and 62.1 or any other standard used.
  • Remember that all the discussions such as Life cycle cost, environment impact or any other subdivision mentioned in the judging criteria must be done for all 3 systems and must include multiple examples.

ASHRAE student teams must locate the building in Istanbul Turkey near the area Arnavutkoy. DO NOT MOVE THE BUILDING TO ANOTHER LOCATION, IT MUST BE LOCATED IN ISTANBUL TURKEY NEAR THE AREA OF ARNAVUTKOY.. Teams that relocate the building to another location will be disqualified.

Assume the building envelope meets the recommendations of ASHRAE 189.1. All internal loading is as described in this OPR. Assume the building is oriented as shown on the schematic plan provided by the Owner. We suggest that the Student Design Team work together with a local consulting engineer as mentor on this project. Your local ASHRAE Chapter Student Activities Chair) will support you in this endeavor by providing willing mentors from its ranks in the consulting community to assist you, at your request. If you need assistance locating your local Chapter Chair, please contact Katie Thomson (Assistant Manager of Student Activities) at

HVAC System Selection Submittal Requirements

The submission for HVAC System Selection Category is limited to 15 minute visual aid (PowerPoint, Youtube, etc.) ALONG with a 30 page maximum technical report, using 11 point Arial or Times New Roman font submitted in PDF format. 

The following topics should be covered:

  • Executive Summary
  • Description of Systems Considered
  • Life Cycle Cost Analysis of 3 mechanical systems
  • Evaluation Criteria used to Select your Recommended System
  • Schematics of Each System
  • Project Sustainability Analysis
  • Conclusions and Recommendations