U.S. Building Stock Characterization Study: A National Typology for Decarbonizing U.S. Buildings

Research output: NRELTechnical Report


To support the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE's) Advanced Building Construction (ABC) Collaborative, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has been tasked with characterizing the U.S. building stock and developing a national typology of buildings. The potential use cases of such a typology are flexible and evolving, but in this initial phase, the primary intention is to help identify technology requirements and engineering solutions for moving the U.S. building stock toward a zero-carbon future by mid-century. This typology will also support the development of appropriate ABC research goals for existing buildings, such as cost targets for new technology development, and in a later phase, the typology can be used to support the implementation of ABC solutions by informing market aggregation and business model development. The ABC Initiative invests in new technologies that enable high building performance, can be deployed quickly with minimal onsite construction time, and are affordable and appealing to building owners, investors, and occupants. Funding awardees use many innovations, including new building materials, 3D printing, offsite manufacturing, robotics, and digital art-to-part. Although the goals of ABC cover a broad range of objectives around energy, comfort, and health, the primary ABC-related application of this national building characterization study is the development of retrofit packages that can be applied to reduce thermal loads in buildings. Retrofit packages will be determined collaboratively by the DOE and the ABC Collaborative. We anticipate a range of upgrade measures covering envelope-, HVAC-, and water-heating-related loads.
Original languageAmerican English
Number of pages93
StatePublished - 2022

Bibliographical note

Replaces December 2021 version: NREL/TP-5500-81186

NREL Publication Number

  • NREL/TP-5500-83063


  • buildings
  • decarbonization
  • end-use energy
  • typology


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