Evaluation of Automated Model Calibration Techniques for Residential Building Energy Simulation

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


This simulation study adapts and applies the general framework described in BESTEST-EX (Judkoff et al 2010) for self-testing residential building energy model calibration methods. BEopt/DOE-2.2 is used to evaluate four mathematical calibration methods in the context of monthly, daily, and hourly synthetic utility data for a 1960's-era existing home in a cooling-dominated climate. The home's modelinputs are assigned probability distributions representing uncertainty ranges, random selections are made from the uncertainty ranges to define 'explicit' input values, and synthetic utility billing data are generated using the explicit input values. The four calibration methods evaluated in this study are: an ASHRAE 1051-RP-based approach (Reddy and Maor 2006), a simplified simulated annealingoptimization approach, a regression metamodeling optimization approach, and a simple output ratio calibration approach. The calibration methods are evaluated for monthly, daily, and hourly cases; various retrofit measures are applied to the calibrated models and the methods are evaluated based on the accuracy of predicted savings, computational cost, repeatability, automation, and ease ofimplementation.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages91
StatePublished - 2013

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-5500-60127


  • ASHRAE 1051-RP
  • automated model calibration
  • benefit of calibration
  • BEOPT/DOE-2.2
  • bestest-ex self-testing procedure
  • Building America
  • central composite design
  • NREL
  • numerical optimization
  • residential
  • residential buildings
  • response surface methodology
  • simulated annealing


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