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Multiple high speed Building energy simulations for cheaper and better NatHERS energy ratings

Rating OptiMizer is a fast turnaround service based on NatHERSi accredited software which automatically adjusts key design and construction components (like window size and wall insulation) and reports on the impact of incremental changes on the heating and cooling energy consumption and star ratingii of the proposed dwelling.

This report allows strategic optimisation of designs to minimise the cost of complianceiii or to minimise the costs of energy required to heat and cool the dwelling. Compromise solutions for cost effectively exceeding the regulatory minimum energy efficiency are also accessible through the service as are focussed analyses (e.g. all generic fenestration options or all WERS rated fenestration options of a nominated window manufacturer).

Services aimed at Building Approval certification

Developed in liaison with School of Architecture and Design of the University of Tasmania, Rating OptiMizer assists designers to optimally consider:

  1. orientations (every 45° from original);
  2. ceiling insulation levels;
  3. roof insulation levels;
  4. external wall constructions;
  5. external wall insulation levels;
  6. internal wall insulation levels;
  7. floor constructions;
  8. subfloor insulation levels;
  9. fenestration efficiency (glazing types and frame types)iv; and
  10. draught proofing configurations.
And being developed:
  1. fenestration locationv and size and openabilityvi (ventilationvii);
  2. eaves overhangs and other window shading; and
  3. roof and wall colours (solar absorptivities).

Services aimed at Design Enhancement

In addition to the regulatory context using standard NatHERS settings, Rating OptiMizer can report on the impact for real clients according to how they will occupy and use the tailored design.

  1. space heating and cooling type (e.g. Central Heat and Space Heat);
  2. occupancy and usage profiles (e.g. empty house in the working day);
  3. health and comfort analysis when unconditioned;
  4. peak load analysis for system sizing and time-of-use metering;
  5. metered energy estimation using nominated star-rated heater/cooler systems;
  6. hour-by-hour comparison with solar PV output for optimising for local Feed in Tariff;
  7. remote site climate data;
  8. recent past weather data; and
  9. projected future climate data (CSIRO).
And being developed:
  1. thermostat temperature preferences.
Optimisations involving high demand of computer resources are processed overnight using cloud computing facilities to meet short time frames for designers and clients.

How to Obtain a Quote or Place an Order

Complete a Rating_OptiMizer_Client_Selection order file available at here (requires MS Excel 2010 or later) to calculate your quote.

Accept the quote by sending the order file with your client details and NatHERSviii file to energy.partners. The identified client will be promptly invoiced and the results will be available as a spreadsheet after receipt of payment in as little as two working days.

  1. Initially with AccuRate but BERS Pro and FirstRate5 versions are being developed.
  2. Requires knowledge of the Energy Adjustment factor or its calculation for each house from the original rating Actual/Adjusted ratio.
  3. NatHERS star ratings as cited in the Building Code of Australia (BCA) or heating and cooling caps and capped total energy demand per inhabitant in NSW as cited in BASIX.
  4. Possibly run through all 22 original or 80 expanded-range WERS Generic versions or all versions for a nominated manufacturer - service being developed in association with Fenestralia.
  5. Possibly only use toned glass on E and W facades; or iterate all options for all facades to reveal such advantages.
  6. Needs understanding of how that appears in the scratch file and what version will activate it– service being developed in association with Fenestralia.
  7. Both ventilation and SHGC should be affected by insect screens so we should incorporate that option too - service being developed in association with Fenestralia.
  8. Initially with AccuRate but BERS Pro and FirstRate5 versions are being developed.