The facility is used for determining the energy performance of building envelope products, including windows, doors, and skylights in real life conditions and with different exposures.The flexibility of the lab promises to shed new light on the important role fenestration products play in contributing to improved building energy performance,” Benney said. "This is an exciting step forward that will benefit the public.”
Benney along with NFRC board chair, Steve Strawn, vice chair, Jeff Baker, and board member, Joe Hayden, toured the FLEXLAB following discussions with LBNL on the international glass database, upcoming versions of the WINDOW / THERM software, and ways to improve communication between the two organizations.
Steve Selkowitz, Senior Advisor for Building Science, and the Group Leader of the Windows and Envelope Materials Group in the Building Technology and Urban Systems Department, led the tour. NFRC board member Christian Kohler and Charlie Curcija also attended.
According to the LBNL Website, FLEXLAB is like a giant, life-size set of building blocks. The facility allows researchers and manufacturers to test buildings systems and components under "real-world” conditions by swapping systems and changing configurations. Afterwards, they can complete rigorous monitoring of performance of every key building element that impacts energy consumption.