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Insights: Recent White Papers and Reports

 

ADVANCING MILITARY MICROGRIDS

by RMI & NAVFAC Southwest

The U.S. Navy is leading the way in the technical and economic testing of microgrid technology as it looks for new ways to bolster the energy security of Navy and Marine Corps bases—a broad Department of Defense agenda in which RMI’s played an important role for three decades. But as those bases, especially in the Southwest, begin to experiment with the technology, they face several major questions around microgrid design, evaluation, economics, and operation. This report discusses the findings of a two-day workshop with RMI and the Naval Facilities Engineering Command Southwest. Drawing on key stakeholders and experts from inside and outside the Navy, the report provides a set of recommended priority action areas for the Navy—or any customer closely looking at microgrid-enabled resilience or renewable energy. Download the report.

REDUCING SOLAR PV SOFT COSTS: A FOCUS ON INSTALLATION LABOR

by RMI & Georgia Tech Research Institute

Distributed solar energy is a key enabler of an affordable, resilient, secure, and low-carbon electricity future. Thanks to steep declines in module prices, over 60 percent of the cost of a residential rooftop solar PV system is now attributable to soft costs, including installation. In Germany, such costs are a fraction of what they are in the U.S. Together, RMI and researchers from Georgia Tech Research Institute set out to determine why. This paper discusses the results of time and motion studies conducted in both countries, as well as best practices and other opportunities U.S. installers can implement to approach German rates of installation cost per watt. Download the report.

HOW TO CALCULATE AND PRESENT DEEP RETROFIT VALUE

by RMI

Deep retrofits—energy efficiency retrofits that reduce a building’s consumption 50 percent or more—significantly cut energy bills. But they also yield many other benefits: improved employee productivity, retention, and health; lower maintenance costs; increased occupancy; bolstered reputation; reduced risk; and higher lease-up and sales rates. Accurately calculating and presenting these additional forms of value to decision makers is a critical tool for driving greater investment in deep retrofits. This paper details both the evidence for that additional value and practical information for how to calculate and present it. Download the report.

BUILDING ENERGY MODELING FOR OWNERS AND MANAGERS

by RMI

Building energy modeling (BEM) is the practice of using computer-based simulation software to perform a detailed analysis of a building’s energy use and energy-using systems. BEM for new construction or retrofit building projects can reduce operational costs, reduce project first costs, and improve occupant satisfaction. This guide helps building owners and managers to define and procure modeling services in commercial new construction, renovation, or operation improvement projects. The topics and examples focus on issues most relevant to owners and managers, including the value of modeling, types of services, and solicitation. Download the report.