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Accurately Assigning Space Types in OpenStudio

asked 2014-12-04 15:10:25 -0500

ivanadriane's avatar


I was wondering what the significance is of accurately assigning space types in OpenStudio. Do the built in space types assign different loads (such as people, lighting equipment, interior electrical equipment, etc.)

The reason I ask is because the default space types seems very limited. In my model I have a gym, parking lot, mailroom, etc. The library does not have comparable space types in which I could use. In this case do I have to manually assign my loads?

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answered 2014-12-04 16:40:33 -0500

When you assign a Space Type from the OpenStudio library, you are putting in defaults for:

  • Lighting (LPD) and lighting schedule
  • Plug loads and plug loads schedule
  • Occupants, occupancy schedule, and occupant activity (load) schedule
  • Minimum ventilation (OA) requirements
  • Infiltration

You want to get these right because these loads can vary greatly depending on the space type.

You can get more space types (from other building types) 2 ways:

SketchUp plugin:

  1. Plugins>OpenStudio Plugin>OpenStudio User Scripts>On Demand Template Generators>Space Type and Construction Set Wizard
  2. Pick the building type, climate zone, and vintage of interest (note that different building types include different space types).
  3. Click OK>your model should now have a bunch more space types to pick from

Note that you can do this many times to get space types from many different templates into your model.

OpenStudio Application:

  1. File>Load Library'
  2. Pick the building type of interest
  3. You should now have a bunch more space types in "My Library" in the Right Column to pick from.
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If you don't find a space type that fits your use case, you can also make your own from scratch adding in load and schedules, or you can copy and modify one from the library that is most like yours.

David Goldwasser's avatar David Goldwasser  ( 2014-12-04 17:29:20 -0500 )edit

Thank you @aparker. @David Goldwasser is there or will there eventually be different space types that can be loaded into the BCL. Common areas such as parking lots, fitness rooms, etc. are not found in templates and it would seem beneficial if space types could be downloaded from the BCL.

ivanadriane's avatar ivanadriane  ( 2014-12-04 17:37:08 -0500 )edit

@David Goldwasser, I'm using info in this post to pick and choose space types from multiple building types to build up a template that I think I'll use often. Once I pull the space types into a blank osm file and drop them into My Model, I still need to adjust some aspects of the schedule set(s), correct? Sometimes the occupancy schedule doesn't really make sense from one building type to another. Can you provide a little more information on what aspects of the space types from one building type could need adjusting when used in another building type? I'm reviewing schedule sets now.

keb's avatar keb  ( 2015-01-08 08:22:39 -0500 )edit

@Kent Beason, the short answer is everything, or at least they need to be reviewed :)

You mentioned schedules, which is definitely likely to change and can also heavily impact the energy use. We do have some internal measure to shift and stretch the schedules in the model, and also better ways to create them parametrically (at some point those should get to BCL). Another area that can easily get overlooked is infiltration. While it seems like it should be a characteristic of the envelope or constructions, it is an internal load to the space/zone.

David Goldwasser's avatar David Goldwasser  ( 2015-01-09 01:38:44 -0500 )edit

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Asked: 2014-12-04 15:10:25 -0500

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Last updated: Dec 04 '14