About CHPB

Vision: To be the leading university research program for high performance building technology development and assessment.

Mission: To partner with industry in the development, demonstration, evaluation, and deployment of new technologies and analysis tools for high performance buildings.

The Center for High Performance Buildings (CHPB) was launched in 2016 through a construction grant from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The CHPB is housed at the Ray W. Herrick Laboratories and contains a number of unique facilities for studying building systems and equipment. The construction of the building was completed in 2013.

Its mission is to partner with industry to develop, demonstrate, and evaluate new technologies and analysis tools that can enable dramatic improvements in the performance of buildings in terms of energy, environmental impact, and occupant satisfaction and productivity. The CHPB is a multi-disciplinary effort involving researchers from Mechanical, Civil (Architectural), and Electrical Engineering and Human Factors in Psychological Sciences.

The team has the expertise and unique facilities to consider a wide range of applications related to engineered environments that address numerous important issues in indoor environmental quality, human comfort and productivity, comfort delivery systems, building envelopes, lighting, equipment efficiency and reliability, environmental impact, controls, automation, etc. The team can span the spectrum from fundamental research to technology development to technology evaluation to technical assistance covering the thrust areas depicted in the adjacent figure and employing a variety of unique, state-of-the-art test beds that include:

  1. Fully-instrumented living laboratory offices that have reconfigurable facades, comfort delivery, and primary equipment to allow testing for impacts of new building technologies on energy and human performance indices and to generate data needed for model validations; [Read more]
  2. A perception-based engineering (PBE) facility to study combined impacts of lighting, acoustics, air quality, temperature, humidity and air flow on occupant perceptions and performance in a controlled manner; [Read more]
  3. Laboratory-scale facilities (outdoor full-scale offices) to allow testing of dynamic building envelopes, lighting/shading controls, cooling/heating systems, mixed mode cooling, solar absorption cooling, photovoltaic/thermal systems integrated into buildings, and associated controls. [Read more]
  4. Laboratory-scale facilities to allow controlled testing of air distribution, cooling/heating equipment, heat exchangers, compressors [Read more]

The building has a LEED-Gold classification, but the primary goal in the design was to have a facility that will allow research on technologies that go well beyond LEED.