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ASHRAE Announces Return of Popular LowDown Showdown Building Competition

Aug 16, 2017

Contact: Allen Haynes
Public Relations

ATLANTA – ASHRAE is pleased to announce the return of the LowDown Showdown competition, the most highly anticipated event of the Building Performance Analysis Conference, which will take place in Atlanta, Ga., from Sept. 27-29.

The Showdown seeks to broaden the industry’s ability to engage architects, engineers, designers and energy modelers to create an effective workflow and an outstanding design in real-word building efficiency challenges. The contest will encourage participants to work as an integrated team to use their design and modeling skills to create a near net-zero energy building.

“The goal of the competition is to challenge participating teams to provide the most up-to-date best practices, work flows and processes required to plan, design, construct and operate a high performing, low energy consuming building that is environmentally responsive and responsible, safe, secure and healthy for human occupancy,” says Dennis Knight, conference chair.

This year, teams will be tested with a real building that was constructed in the 1970s. The building has a traditional VAV reheat system in the office areas and is similar to thousands around the U.S. It is located in a challenging Northern Virginia climate, and it has large storage areas which have very specific temperature and humidity requirements.

This year’s LowDown Showdown competing teams are:

  • Nothin’ But Net Zero (Christian Taber, Nick Cavitt, Caitlin Bohnert, Nagappan Chidambaram, Jim Spielbauer, Alex Mazza, Aaron McNely and Brittany Adam)
  • LowDown for Watt! (Lewis Morgante, Chris Win, Ryan Pedrotty, Griffin Green and Zaida Parsons)
  • Sandstorm Stompers (Junaid Bin Naseer, Christopher King, Ali Haidar, Hassan Karawny and Jihad Al Kalout)
  • Sustainability Savants (James Cullin, Kasey Richards, Lea Beauvais, Charles White, Alan Shepherd, Marc Brune and David Mead)
  • re+ro (Matthew Tokarik, Vipul Babruya, Mahsa Minaei, Brian Turner, An-Lei Huang, Yiyuan Jia, Keiron D. Nanan and Shermeen Yousif)

Each team will create an energy model and submit a results spreadsheet, narrative and poster using templates provided. Teams will be judged on their design’s energy use, practicality, and calibration, as well as their teamwork, creativity and overall presentation. There will be prizes for the top three teams as well as a fan favorite team chosen by audience responses.

This year’s LowDown Showdown judges are:

  • Dennis Knight, Fellow ASHRAE, is an ASHRAE Director-at-Large and Distinguished Lecturer and Building Energy Modeling Professional (BEMP). He has more than 40 years of experience in the design, construction, operation and maintenance of high-performance buildings. He is also the Building Performance Analysis Conference Chair.
  • Annie Marston, Ph.D., Member ASHRAE, is an expert in energy modeling and related simulation applications, such as CFD modeling and daylight modeling.
  • Dennis Shelden, Ph.D., is the Director of the Digital Building Lab and Associate Professor at Georgia Tech University, as well as an expert in applications of digital technology to building design, construction and operations.
  • James Vallort, Fellow ASHRAE, is Executive Vice President of Environmental Systems Design, a full-service mechanical, electrical, plumbing and technology consulting firm.
  • Hillary Weitze is an Associate Principal and senior engineer on Integral Group’s Building Performance team. She is currently working with school districts in California and Colorado to retrofit their buildings to achieve zero net energy and carbon neutrality goals.

For more information about the Conference, visit the Building Performance Analysis Conference website.

ASHRAE, founded in 1894, is a global society advancing human well-being through sustainable technology for the built environment. The Society and its more than 56,000 members worldwide focus on building systems, energy efficiency, indoor air quality, refrigeration and sustainability. Through research, standards writing, publishing, certification and continuing education, ASHRAE shapes tomorrow’s built environment today. More information can be found at www.ashrae.org/news.