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How is Site Standard Air Density calculated in EnergyPlus?

asked 2016-04-26 16:16:34 -0500

updated 2016-10-20 19:37:44 -0500

In EnergyPlus documentation, I did not find any description about how the site elevation corrected standard air density is calculated. I assume it follows the method described in the ASHRAE HOF, just want to confirm.

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answered 2016-04-27 06:29:55 -0500

updated 2020-02-14 12:10:56 -0500

It would appear that you're correct. According to the DesignBuilder help, it follows this approach:

Air is assumed to be dry and at 20°C. The site elevation is used to calculate standard atmospheric pressure using the equation for 'standard atmospheric' pressure on p 6.1 of the ASHRAE 1997 HOF.

Density = P / (R * T)


R is the Gas constant = 287.05 J/kg-K

T is the temperature in K. Air is assumed to be at 20°C so, T = (20 + 273.15)

P is standard pressure:

P = 101325 x (1.0 − Z x 0.0000225577)^5.2559


Z = Elevation above sea level (m)

This is referred to in the Engineering Reference section on demand controlled ventilation.

RhoStd = standard air density (1.204 kg/m${^3}$}) adjusted for the local barometric pressure (standard barometric pressure corrected for altitude, ASHRAE 1997 HOF pg. 6.1).

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Asked: 2016-04-26 16:16:34 -0500

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Last updated: Feb 14