Demand-Controlled Ventilation

Across the U.S., many stores keep long hours every day, and although they may be full of browsing shoppers during some hours of the week, relatively few customers will be milling about the floor space at other times. Occupancy fluctuations like these offer retail stores and other commercial facilities an opportunity for annual energy savings that can amount to as much as $1.00 per square foot (ft2). Instead of continuously ventilating the space at a constant rate designed to accommodate the maximum number of customers, building operators can implement demand-controlled ventilation (DCV) so that the amount of outside air drawn in for ventilation depends on the building’s actual occupancy at any given time. This strategy results in energy savings because it reduces the amount of air that needs to be conditioned as well as the fan energy used to move that air. DCV primarily refers to when actual occupancies are approximated by measuring carbon dioxide (CO2) levels within a building with sensors.

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