The CER Center for Renewable Resource Integration tries to answer three important questions:
- How much renewable energy can we typically expect for different microclimates?
- How much can we expect in the next hour or day?
- How can we balance energy demand with renewable energy supply?
Answering these questions is critical for expanded proliferation of renewable energy on the electric grid. With funding from the National Renewable Energy Lab, Department of Energy, California Energy Commission, National Science Foundation, and California Solar Initiative, CER's researchers use cutting-edge technology and scientific modeling to better manage renewable energy distribution systems.
Buildings consume 40% of total US primary energy and 72% of electricity, a large fraction of which is used for heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC). Understanding heat transfer between buildings and the environment is key to designing strategies that can help reduce energy consumption of an urban area. The Kleissl Urban Energy Efficiency lab runs 3-dimensional models that take into account meteorology, building and ground materials, and building operation modes to determine the urban thermal environment and building energy use. Our research results inform green engineering strategies (such as reflective roof coatings, solar panels, artificial turf, and urban forests) to improve existing buildings and create energy efficient communities.
Principal Investigator: Jan Kleissl