Decarbonizing Indoor Air Quality

IAQ Equals Energy

Commercial buildings consume 40% of the energy generated in the U.S.

The HVAC system energy needed to provide occupants with clean and conditioned air is over half of that. The fan energy to move that air through the building is over half of that, 25% of the energy consumed in a building. (In fact, fans consume 10% of all energy in the U.S.) And over 90% of the cost of filtering and cleaning the air is fan energy - the energy required to push the air through the resistance of the air filters. IAQ = Energy.

Buildings use >38% of all US energy and 76% of electricity

Reducing HVAC and fan energy is a key element of every decarbonization strategy

But while companies and institutions are driving to decarbonize and reduce energy consumption, they are also looking for an increased level of IAQ. The pandemic accelerated existing trends and has raised the bar for expected IAQ. People want higher filtration efficiencies for particles, smoke, and biologicals, more control of gas phase contaminants, higher ventilation rates, and better airflow patterns - all of which can increase energy use.

Increasing the efficiency of traditional particle filtration increases the pressure drop and therefore the fan horsepower required. Similarly, adding gas phase control to systems adds system static pressure and often requires a post-filter. Dynamic Air Quality Solutions solves both IAQ energy savings challenges.

Pressure drop as a function of dust load

IAQ with Less Fan Energy

Dynamic offers a range of products to minimize fan energy while effectively controlling particles, biologicals, smoke, and gas phase contaminants. The Dynamic V8 provides MERV 13-15 performance with up to 2/3 less fan energy and a fraction of the maintenance of passive alternatives. For example, in a 60,000cfm AHU, an array of V8s can save over 90,000kWh/year versus an array of MERV 14 and pre-filters. The V8 will also capture ultrafine and adsorbed odors.

For precise control of gas phase contaminants, Dynamic EDGE panels come in a range of blends that target specific contaminant groups, while using up to 75% less energy than pellet-based systems. The advanced filtration technology designed by Dynamic simultaneously improves indoor air quality (IAQ), conserves energy, and dramatically reduces ongoing utility and operating costs.

This allows Dynamic to help building owners and designers with three general types of projects.

New Construction: In an initial design, taking 1-2” of system static out of the system can have a lot of positive impacts. Less system static means smaller, quieter, less expensive fans and drives. Less fan energy means less kW/ft2, less Watts/cfm, better PUE, help with energy codes, ASHRAE 90.1, LEED/WELL, and overall decarbonization goal.

For further system efficiency, where appropriate, Dynamic can help with the implementation of the IAQ Procedure of ASHRAE 62.1 by being able to effectively control all three types of indoor contamination: particulate, biological, and gas phase. Utilizing air cleaning is a fraction of the operational cost of increasing outdoor air levels and ensures IAQ with greater certainty.

Energy Upgrades: Dynamic systems are used in some very large performance contracts and energy conservation projects, both replacing high-efficiency passive filters and helping to implement the IAQP.

IAQ Issues/Upgrades: HVAC systems that were designed with low-efficiency, low-static pressure passive filters have limited fan horsepower and the ability to upgrade or address a specific IAQ problem such as wildfire smoke. Dynamic can provide a solution that fits.

Utility Rebates and Tax Incentives

Dynamic systems have been key parts of the design in new projects and energy retrofits that have received millions in rebates and incentives. Obviously, these are location and project specific. You can find more information on policies and incentives for your state by visiting https://www.dsireusa.org/. Sort rebates by applying filters based on state, eligible sector, technology, and more.

At a national level, recent changes to the EPAct 179D Accelerated Depreciation Program have enabled the potential for new incentives for upgrades to existing projects.