A comparative study is being conducted to measure the actual performance of a Zero Energy House design. Ideally, a zero energy house produces as much energy as it consumes in a year’s time. Two identically-sized houses (1610 sq ft), constructed side-by-side in southwest Las Vegas, Nevada, are equipped with a network of sensors that measure every aspect of energy usage in each home. One house is used as a baseline (standard comparison) house and was built using conventional construction techniques. The other house, the Zero Energy House, employs many energy saving features, solar power generation, and supplemental solar water heating. Both houses are utilized as model homes in an actual housing development, so it is reasonable to believe that both will experience similar and consistent usage. The data logged onsite are automatically collected every day (in an almost real-time basis) and sent via telephone connection to the Center for Energy Research at UNLV for analysis. Results are posted on the web. This paper describes the differences in construction details between the two houses. It also gives a summary of the ways the performance data are being acquired and processed. Finally, the methods used to represent the data are outlined.

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