Viridiana Bonilla ’21
Faculty Collaborator: Sally Meyer, Physics
An energy audit is the analysis of a home’s energy consumption with the goal of better understanding its energy loss in the form of heat, and consequently, its environmental and financial impact. Currently available energy analysis software packages are outdated and difficult to use. Additionally, this existing software does not appropriately factor in heat loss from foundations into their calculations despite the significant contribution to the total residential heat loss. We are in the process of developing new software using the FORTRAN programming language to computationally analyze a residential home specific to the Colorado Springs area. The program calculates the heat loss through the home’s walls, ceiling, leaks, and foundation. The three-dimensional, time dependent heat flow through the ground makes foundation heat loss calculations complex, so two calculation methods were analyzed and incorporated into the program. An ongoing goal is to have the program model various retrofits that homeowners might make to their home and compare heat loss of their existing home to the retrofitted home. One specific retrofit change being investigated is adding renewable energy to the home’s power source(s).