Shaping Tomorrow's Built Environment Today

2018 Building Performance Analysis Conference and SimBuild

Share This

BPA-Newer-spot light for web.png

2018 Building Performance Analysis Conference and SimBuild – Co-organized by ASHRAE and IBPSA-USA
Chicago, IL | September 26–28, 2018


The 2018 Building Performance Analysis Conference and SimBuild, co-organized by ASHRAE and IBPSA-USA, will be held September 26–28, 2018 at the Hilton Chicago, Chicago, IL. It is the third co-organized conference between ASHRAE and IBPSA-USA.

The goal of this conference is to present the new techniques and workflows that will help researchers and practitioners make better decisions during the simulation and modeling process of an entire building life cycle.

The conference program will consist of Keynote Speakers, Invited Speakers, a Call for Papers, a Call for Presenters and the fourth ASHRAE LowDown Showdown. Special panels may be offered by industry leaders and organizations.

Conference Flyer

  • Conference Program

    While conference papers are still being reviewed, the 2018 Building Performance Analysis Conference and SimBuild will feature more than 60 presentations and approximately 120 papers by leading industry practitioners and academic researchers. Some of the selected presentations include application of virtual reality for daylighting design, designing for thermal nirvana, metrics and methods for carbon-neutral and net-zero building design, automated calibration techniques and modeling standards and strategies with the recently released ASHRAE Standard 209 on simulation aided design.

    Presentation types include TEDergy talks, team case studies, innovative and emerging technology ideas and workflows and lessons learned - in interesting and engaging formats for more audience participation.

    A Preliminary listing of the selected presentations is available below:

    Sustainable Design: Metrics and Methods (SD)
    SD 1: Sustainable Design Leader - Sean Quinn
    SD 2: Predicting Embodied Energy and Carbon Life Cycle Assessments - Vikram Sami
    SD 3: Redefining Metrics and Methods for a Low Carbon Future - Eddy Santosa
    SD 4: A Method for Incorporating Aesthetic Variables and Form Diversity into Architectural Design Optimization - Shermeen Yousif

    Modeling for Net Zero Design (MND)
    MND 1: Performance Modeling as Design Driver for establishing Net Zero Design Guidelines - Shona O’Dea
    MND 2: It's How You Get There: One Team's Journey to Achieving Net Zero Energy - Cindy Cogil
    MND 3: Getting to Net Zero (Revised) - Eric Dixon

    Making the Case for Modeling (MCM)
    MCM 1: What Architects Want from Building Performance Analysis - Andrew Corney
    MCM 2: Performance Designer: An Equal Design Voice - Amarpreet Sethi
    MCM 3: Building Performance Analysis: A Look Through 5 Lenses - Nicole Peterson
    MCM 4: Big Data Analysis for High Performance Design - Amir Rezaei-Bazkiaei
    MCM 5: Data Analytics: Saving Much More Than Energy - Kevin Day

    Modeling in Practice: Lessons Learned (LL)
    LL 1: Lessons Learned from Architect/Engineer Shared Energy Model Workflows - Chris Mackey
    LL 2: A Meta-analysis of Energy Modeling Errors: Learn from Others Mistakes - Gail Hampsmire
    LL 3: Renewed Perspectives on Energy Modeling: 4 Insights from a Millennial - Sigal Shemesh
    LL 4: Quality Control for Energy Models - Oliver Baumann
    LL 5: Energy Modeling Practices Landscape through the Lense of Web-Scraping - Yung Nguyen
    LL 6: Advanced eQuest Techniques to Make your Model Pliable - Ian Robinson
    LL 7: How Much Should We Trust Computer Simulated Weather Data? - Joe Huang
    LL 8: Future Weather for Building Design and Urban Analysis - Janet Reyna

    Modeling Standards and Strategies (MSS)
    MSS 1: Modeling Cycles: Using ASHRAE 209P to Define and Integrate Simulation into our Design Process - Jill Kurtz
    MSS 2: Introduction to the New Standard 209 on Simulation Aided Design - Erik Kolderup
    MSS 3: Parametric Analysis Tool for Early Design Phase Study - Te Qi
    MSS 4: Setting a Zero Net Energy Workflow Paradigm for Strategic Planning and Target Setting - Sananda Mukherjee

    BIM for Building Performance (BBP)
    BBP 1: Using BIM Tools for Life Cycle Assessment of Large Buildings - Brian McKinney
    BBP 2: From BIM to BEM with the OpenBIM Workflow - Barbara Torregrosa
    BBP 3: Standard 224 - BIM Specifications for Owners - Dennis Knight

    Codes and Standards (CS)
    CS 1: Dogs and Cats Living Together: ASHRAE 90.1 in California? - Dimitri Contoyannis
    CS 2: Behind the Scenes of California Compliance Modeling: A Custom Workflow to Help Ease the Pain - Greg Collins
    CS 3: Choosing Your Own Compliance Path: Prescriptive vs. Performance - Nathan Kegel
    CS 4: How Do I Comply? Let Me Count the Ways - John Bynum

    Building Operations and Advanced Modeling Techniques (BAT)
    BAT 1: Automatic Building Detection and Energy Model Creation Technologies (AutoBEM) - Joshua New
    BAT 2: Integrating Energy Model with a Customized Script to Optimize Building Operation - Te Qi
    BAT 3: IBPSA Project 1 - BIM/GIS and Modelica Framework for Building and Community Energy System Design and Operation - Michael Wetter
    BAT 4: Bridging Machine Learning and Controls for Demand Response and Building Energy Management - Achin Jain
    BAT 5: Interoperable Algorithmic Modeling (IAM): Two-Dimensional Finite Element Method Heat Transfer Translation and Analysis - Kyleen Rockwell
    BAT 6: Testing and Modelling of Phase Change Materials for Building Applications - Mark Richards

    Modeling Best Practices: Daylighting (BPD)
    BPD 1: The Role of Daylight Analysis in Design Decision-Making - Ramana Koti
    BPD 2: RadVR: A Virtual Reality Daylighting Design Tool - Mohammad Keshavarzi
    BPD 3: The Holistic Design Process: Integrating Daylight Simulations in Dynamo in Revit - Maha Shalaby
    BPD 4: Willis Tower Repositioned: The Glass Gridshell - Nicole Peterson
    BPD 5: Dynamic Interior Roller Shades: Daylight and Energy Model Comparison with Experimental Data - Niraj Kunwar

    Modeling Best Practices: Occupant Comfort (BPO)
    BPO 1: The Disconnect Between Legacy Occupancy Schedules and Ventilation Design Occupant Densities or "How Many Spaces Can One Person Occupy? - Fred Porter
    BPO 2: A Workflow for Assessing Circadian Daylight Performance of the Electrochromic Glazing - Ahoo Malekafzali Ardakan
    BPO 3: Designing for Thermal Nirvana - Shona O’Dea

    Model Best Practices: Calibration (BPC)
    BPC 1: Existing Calibration Approaches for Building Performance Comparison and Case Studies - An-Lei Huang
    BPC 2: Baselining and Energy Model Calibration Techniques - Dana Etherington
    BPC 3: Reducing Building Energy Modeling Workloads Through Automated Calibration - Daniel Villa
    BPC 4: Smart Thermostat Data-Based Residential Buildings Remote Energy Assessments: You Are Probably Doing It Wrong! - Amine Lazrak
    BPC 5: Empirical Validation Under Experiment and Model Uncertainties: Methods and Results - Qi Lu
    BPC 6: Behind-the-Meter Energy Storage: Modeling and Value Stacking - Ian Robinson

    Modeling Best Practices: Case Studies I (CSO)
    CSO 1: Net Zero Energy Hospital Design via Simulation: An Architect and Engineer's Perspective - Amir Rezaei-Bazkiaei
    CSO 2: Lessons Learned from Pursuing ZNE Retrofits for Municipal Facilities through BayREN Program - Yung Nguyen
    CSO 3: Web-Based Energy Calculator for Master-Planning Project - Te Qi
    CSO 4: Simulation-Driven Design: Integration of Energy Simulation and Daylighting to Inform High-rise Buildings – Elnaz Tafrihi
    CSO 5: Boosting Confidence in Green-Field Data Center Cooling Performance Using Advanced Simulation Tools and Techniques - Peter Czerwinski
    CSO 6: CFD Simulation of Airflow through World's Largest Reverberant Chamber - Chaitanya Johar

    Modeling Best Practices: Case Studies II (CST)
    CST 1: Statistical Framework for Energy Prediction in Office Buildings - Thulasi Ram Khamma
    CST 2: Asset Rating Methodology and Analysis of Food Service Buildings - Juan Gonzalez
    CST 3: Batteries for Peak Shifting in an All-Electric Multifamily Building - Anna McCullough
    CST 4: Modeling Indoor Swimming Pools - Suyash Vidwans
    CST 5: Mechanical and Thermal Characterization of Cork Concrete Composite: Experimental and Modeling Study - Boussetoua Hocine
    CST 6: EnergyPlus Model of Novel PCM Cooling System Validated with Installed System Data - Chao Yang
    CST 7: Optimal Control of Ten Parallel Heat Pumps Using Gaussian Process Model - Cheol-Soo Park
    CST 8: Pulse Air Tracing - Clifford Cooper

    Presentation Types include:

    1. Team Case Studies: Coordinated presentation from several members of high performance building design projects. The abstract should include a detailed description of the project, design goals, modeling challenges, performance benchmarks used and experiences from all stages of design, construction and operation. Also identify the team members and include brief descriptions of their role in the project and the presentation.
    2. Individual Presentations: Traditional seminar type presentation on topics of interest to the conference attendees. Presentation duration is 15 minutes.
    3. TEDergy Talk: Similar to the popular TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design) talk presentations, TEDergy talk is intended to address a specific novel idea, new modeling technique, workflow, software utility or technology in a concise 10 minute presentation to generate audience interest and participation.

    The conference accepted abstracts on the following topics:

    Buildings and Information Technology Nexus
    Modeling Advances
    Early Design
    Multiple Systems Modeling
    Big Data
    Health, Wellness and Comfort
    Energy Performance and System Simulation
    Codes, Standards and Compliance

  • Keynote Speakers

    Brandon Andow

    Brandon Andow

    Title: Modeling Spectrally Selective Fenestration for Indoor Environmental Quality

    Buildings are increasingly designed with large areas of integrated plantings as a key environmental component whether for biophilia, indoor air quality, building integrated agriculture, or to meet the new health and wellness standards requirements. Fenestration which supports the mixed occupancy of people and plants has potentially conflicting challenges with respect to the spectral transmission of daylight. Spectrally selective glass coatings require co-optimization of transmitted radiation which impacts the rate of photosynthesis, solar heat gain, electric lighting and cooling energy use, visual comfort, and supplemental grow lighting energy use. PAR workflows from recent projects are detailed including The Amazon Spheres, Tianjin Juilliard School, and Longwood Conservatory.

    Arpan Bakshi

    Arpan Bakshi-175x209.jpg
    Arpan Bakshi

    Title: From SIM to CIM: Mega Trends in Performance Design, Simulation and Communication

    Industry trends in 2018 point to a future that expands the definition of building performance simulation beyond buildings. The rapid growth of cities, mobility and new technology introduces exciting new opportunities for building performance professionals, who can leverage their simulation expertise into new markets and emerging disciplines. This presentation endeavors to provide a glimpse into the future.

    Vivian Loftness

    Vivian Loftness

    Title: High Performance Buildings and the Internet of Things (IoT)

    Will light switches be obsolete? Will every air diffuser be ours to control? Will our windows talk to us? The Internet of Things is finally making it to our workplaces, and it can dramatically improve air quality, visual quality, thermal comfort and desktop energy management. Integrated practices have a strategic advantage by incorporating the Internet of Things (IoT) to significantly advance indoor environmental quality for human health and productivity as well as for energy savings. This presentation will showcase innovations for enclosure, HVAC, lighting and plug load systems - with advanced controls that surf the environment and bring humans-in-the-loop – key to the enduring quality of buildings.


  • Call for Papers

    Call for Papers

    The Call for papers is now CLOSED

    ASHRAE and IBPSA-USA announced a call for papers for the 2018 Building Performance Analysis Conference and SimBuild, co-organized by ASHRAE and IBPSA-USA. It will be the third co-organized conference between the two organizations and will take place at the Hilton Chicago, September 26 – 28, 2018.

    “Building performance modeling is transforming the industry to meet the net zero and Architecture 2030 design goals, improving operational efficiency and occupant comfort,” said Krishnan Gowri, conference chair. “Recent advancements in machine learning, data science and sensor technologies are opening up new avenues to advance the analysis and modeling techniques to meet the challenges faced by designers and modelers.  This conference seeks to connect the researchers and industry practitioners to facilitate the adoption of these new techniques and workflows to make better decisions through the application of simulation and modeling over the entire building life cycle.”

    Modelers, architects, software developers and researchers will address the practices of building performance analysis, energy modeling and building performance simulation using existing simulation tools, software development and future simulation research and applications.

    The conference accepted abstracts on the following topics:

    • Buildings and Information Technology Nexus
    • Modeling Advances
    • Early Design
    • Multiple Systems Modeling
    • Big Data
    • Health, Wellness and Comfort
    • Energy Performance and System Simulation
    • Codes, Standards and Compliance

    Papers are due February 9, 2018 and will undergo a double-blind review. Conference papers should not exceed eight pages.


    CONFERENCE PAPER WORD TEMPLATE (updated 12/22/2017)
    CONFERENCE PAPER LATEX TEMPLATE (updated 12/22/2017)

  • LowDown Showdown Modeling Competition

    The 4th Annual ASHRAE LowDown Showdown will be held in conjunction with the 2018 Building Performance Analysis Conference and SimBuild co-organized by ASHRAE and IBPSA-USA.

    Learn More about the LowDown Showdown >>

  • Project StaSIO

    Project StaSIO

    Project StaSIO (STandard Simulation Inputs and Outputs), has been developed by IBPSA-USA’s Research Committee. It is an online repository of crowd-sourced simulation graphics and case studies organized around the ASHRAE Standard 209 framework. ASHRAE Standard 209 provides a framework on how to integrate energy modeling into the design process and Project StaSIO aims to provide supporting content on inputs, outputs, and case studies around the first three 'modeling cycles' defined by the standard which relate to early stage analysis like load reduction modeling and conceptual design modeling. StaSIO approaches this issue by organizing energy modeling efforts according to targeted investigations questions broken down by energy modeling category.

    IBPSA-USA is organizing a competition in conjunction with the ASHRAE/IBPSA 2018 Building Performance Analysis Conference and SimBuild to catalyze crowd-sourced submissions to Project StaSIO. Through the competition, the StaSIO teams hopes to have a website which serves as a resource for project teams all over the world looking for ways to better communicate simulation results and improve the decision making process at the early stage of design.

    Deadline for Submissions: May 31, 2018

    Evaluation from Judges: June 1 – August 15, 2018

    Public Voting Process: August 1 – September 20, 2018

    Winners will be announced at the conference. More information about the conference can be found here.

    Visit Project STaSIO and enter the competition here.

  • Venue & Dates

    The conference will take place at the Hilton Chicago. The conference will be Wednesday–Friday, September 26–28. Pre-conference workshops will be held September 24–25.

    Hotel reservations can be made at the Conference Hotel. The conference hotel is the Hilton Chicago located at 720 South Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL. ASHRAE has a block of rooms available at the negotiated group rate of $199+ tax per night. To make reservations at the group rate, click this link:

  • Registration Information


    Early Bird, ends August 11


    $                    575.00

    Non Member

    $                    650.00



    $                    640.00

    Non Member

    $                    710.00



    $                    350.00


    $                    400.00

    Virtual Conference Only Member

    $                    129.00

    Virtual Conference Only Non Member

    $                    179.00

    Your registration includes the following:

    • Evening Reception
    • Light Breakfast, lunch and breaks on Wednesday, September 26
    • Light Breakfast, lunch, breaks and a reception on Thursday, September 27
    • Light Breakfast and break on Friday, September 28
    • Access to the Virtual Conference for up to 18 months after the conference*
  • Conference Committees

    Steering Committee Scientific Committee Lowdown Showdown Committee
    Krishnan Gowri, Chair Rahul Athalye, Chair Annie Marston, Chair
    Annie Marston, Vice Chair Carrie Brown Carrie Brown
    Carrie Brown Supriya Goel John Bynum
    Susan Collins Alejandra Menchaca Susan Collins
    Dennis Knight Weimin Wang Lauren Wallace
    Vikram Sami    
    Lauren Wallace    
    Rahul Athalye    
    Jon Cohen (CEC representative)    
  • Co-Organizers
  • Sponsorship Packages

    The conference organizers are pleased to offer several sponsorship opportunities to engage industry participation. The sponsorship offsets conferences expenses and provides access to seasoned practitioners and principals responsible for managing modeling services.

    All sponsors will have their company logo and name on the event flyer, the conference web site and recognition during the conference. A summary of the specific benefits of each sponsorship level is included in pdf_icon.png Sponsorship Levels and Benefits. If have questions or are interesting in being a sponsor, please contact Ragan McHan,

  • Pre-Conference Courses

    On Monday, September 24 and Tuesday, September 25, software companies and educators are conducting full-day or half-day workshops at the Chicago Hilton hotel prior to the start of the conference. You can register for these pre-conference workshops through online registration once it has launched. Pre-conference workshops have limited seating.

    Separate registration is required. These workshops and course are not included with the conference and will not be included in the virtual conference.

    If your company is interested in hosting a pre-conference workshop please contact Ragan McHan at Due to limited availability, space is available on a first-reserved basis.
    pdf_icon.png For more information about hosting a pre-conference workshop


    Title of Workshop:  Heating & Cooling Load Calculations, HVAC Equipment Sizing, and Modeling for 90.1-2013 ECB Code Compliance with IESVE Software
    Date: Monday September 24, 2018
    Company Name: IES Ltd.
    Start Time: 9am
    End Time: 5pm
    Presenters: Liam Buckley, Matthew Duffy
    Price: $50
    For those attending this 1-day workshop, you will learn how to use IESVE-2018 software for the purposes of: 

    1. Calculating heating and cooling loads using the ASHRAE Heat Balance Method
    2. Sizing HVAC equipment
    3. Generate loads reports (building loads, waterside plant loop loads, AHU system loads, HVAC zone loads and room loads)
    4. Meeting commercial energy code-compliance in the State of Illinois (and 10+ other US States) via the 90.1-2013 ECB Code Compliance Option (IECC 2015 Equivalent)
    5. Generate 90.1-2013 ECB Energy Code Compliance Reports 

    Registered attendees will also receive access to the online Lunch-N-Learn video tutorial for Model Geometry in IESVE Software (worth $50). Attendees do not require any prior knowledge of IESVE software to attend this workshop.

    EnergyPlus for Practitioners
    Date: Monday-Tuesday, September 24-25, 2018
    Start time: 8 a.m.
    End Time: 5 p.m.
    Presenters: Aaron Boranian, Peter Ellis
    Price: $895 for both days

    Have you ever wanted to truly understand how to use EnergyPlus at the text level?

    Have you been using OpenStudio, DesignBuilder, or another GUI and had the need to peek under the hood to debug a problem or implement a measure or workaround?

    This workshop should be a prerequisite for anyone planning to work with EnergyPlus regardless of what user interface you choose.

    In this two-day workshop we focus on the needs of the energy modeling practitioner in order to get you up to speed and highly productive with EnergyPlus as quickly as possible. We have developed our training materials from scratch over a period of several years based on our extensive experience using EnergyPlus to model real-world projects and helping others to do the same.We cover the fundamentals of EnergyPlus such as geometry and internal loads while rapidly ramping up to advanced topics such as HVAC systems and controls. We guide you through the complexities of the EnergyPlus syntax, input/output files, documentation, and essential software tools including the OpenStudio (legacy) plugin for SketchUp. Most importantly, we teach you how to use the available resources to teach yourself going forward. Demonstrations and hands-on exercises are used extensively throughout. By the end of the workshop, you should be comfortable with creating, running, and debugging EnergyPlus models.

    Learn to use DesignBuilder from early-stage through to LEED
    Date: Monday-Tuesday, September 24-25, 2018
    Start time: 8 a.m. 
    End Time: 5 p.m. 
    Presenters: Tim McDowell and David Cocking
    Price: $595 for both days/$345 for day 2 only

    This training will teach you how to use DesignBuilder to improve productivity, enabling you to model and analyze building performance using EnergyPlus and Radiance much more quickly and efficiently. The workshop will cover the key elements of modeling from early through to detailed project stages and
    LEED certification. No prior learning or knowledge of DesignBuilder is required for Day 1, which will teach you how to quickly and easily create a model for early-stage analysis then test different early-stage options, develop the model as the design evolves, run heating and cooling load calculations, analyze different solar shading options and run a variety of simulations to quantify energy and comfort performance. Day 2 will introduce detailed HVAC modelling and show you how to quickly and easily generate ASHRAE 90.1 baseline models, update them as required, generate LEED v3 and v4 daylighting
    credits and the outputs required for LEED submissions, and will also introduce our new online LEED reporting tools. Day 2 requires attendance on Day 1 or prior experience using DesignBuilder. Both workshops will use our latest software, which includes significant new ASHRAE 90.1 Appendix G automation, DAYSIM for LEED v4 daylighting credits, and a new online LEED reporting and submission tool. Free 30-day licences will be provided, so why not come along and learn how to use these new tools and experience for yourself why so many of our customers say they would recommend DesignBuilder training to a friend or colleague.


    Title of Workshop:  Advanced HVAC Modeling with IESVE Software
    Date: Tuesday September 25, 2018
    Company Name: IES Ltd.
    Start Time: 9am
    End Time: 5pm
    Presenters: Megan Tosh, Suyash Vidwans
    Price: $150
    For those attending this 1-day workshop, you will learn how to use the ApacheHVAC Application of IESVE-2018 software for the purposes of loads sizing and energy simulation. Specific HVAC modeling examples will include:

    1. VRF (air-source and water-source) Systems with heat recovery
    2. ApacheHVAC Controllers
    3. Airside and waterside heat recovery
    4. Chiller optimization
    5. Multiple primary/secondary loops on hot water and chilled water systems
    6. Ground-source heat pumps
    7. Etc.

    Attendees are required to be familiar with the Apache simulation tools in IESVE software to attend this workshop.

  • Certification Exam Administration, Friday, September 28

    Apply by Sept. 7 to sit for an ASHRAE Certification exam in Building Energy Modeling (BEMP) on Friday, September 28 at 12:30 p.m. to take place at the headquarters hotel, the Hilton Chicago.

    Recognized by over 35 national, state and local government bodies and with over 2,750 certifications earned, ASHRAE’s six (6) certifications - including the BEMP - increasingly have become the must-have credential for built-environment professionals.

    Note: Conference attendees may pay the Certification application fee when registering for the Conference.  A separate Certification application will be requested.


Autodesk-250x57.jpg DesignBuilder.jpg IES-178x57.jpg
Trane.jpg edsltas_logo.png CoveTool.jpg