Featured Resources

Recent Achievements


Drafted U.S.-China joint Intellectual Property Management Plan for development of an open-source advanced benchmarking tool


Launched LIQUIDARMOR™ LT Liquid Flashing and Sealant, an innovative new product for advanced moisture and air sealing protection in commercial buildings


Launched MPCPy, an open-source platform for model predictive control to predict building performance and optimize control


Received R&D Magazine’s 2016 R&D 100 Award for the Cool Roof Time Machine, a method to simulate soiling and weathering of roofing materials

Building Energy Efficiency

Clockwise from top: Johnson Controls Asia-Pacific Headquarters  in Shanghai China – a demonstration project to validate sensing, commissioning, controls, and grid integration capabilities; Rendering for Forest City developers’ major urban redevelopment project, currently under construction, which includes DC power distribution in many buildings; LBNL researcher testing performance of innovative air cleaning material developed by industry partner BASF

Both the U.S. and China have tremendous potential to reduce building energy consumption and increase building energy efficiency. Researchers are working to improve efficiency in new and existing buildings, save energy, reduce emissions, increase indoor comfort, and reduce stress on the electric grid. As new construction proceeds around the globe, CERC Building Energy Efficiency (CERC BEE) research efforts are helping to lock in the tremendous potential energy savings for the long term.  Dr. Nan Zhou from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory leads the U.S. consortium, and Dr. Liang Junqiang from the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development leads the Chinese consortium.

Under the CERC’s leadership, the expert teams from national and private institutes are dedicated to the implementation of the five-year Building Energy Efficiency Joint Work Plan (English PDF Chinese PDF), and will make significant contributions to reduction in building energy consumption in both countries.

U.S. and Chinese officials agreed to a Technology Management Plan (TMP) (Bilingual PDF) regarding intellectual property rights. The Agreement (English PDF Chinese PDF) protects American and Chinese research, scientists, and engineers by ensuring their intellectual property rights for the technology they create.

Research Focus Areas


Researchers are developing technologies and evaluating techniques to improve the performance of new and existing building envelopes. This includes developing a precast wall system that reduces heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) loads through the panel and decreases the weight of the panel by 40% without increasing the installed cost.


Researchers are developing an open source framework and software that will enable occupancy responsive model predictive controls (MPC) for various indoor spaces; conducting assessments of the energy benefits of the use of these techniques in U.S. and Chinese office buildings; and establishing an open test-bed where industry and academia can develop and demonstrate their building control solutions.


U.S. and Chinese researchers are conducting techno-economic analysis of DC power distribution systems, evaluating DC power systems through modeling and simulation, and performing comparative analyses with alternating current (AC) power systems.


Industry and researchers are working together to develop and demonstrate the performance of advanced air cleaning materials and building simulation tools to design building systems that use these materials for energy savings and indoor air quality improvements. Researchers are also customizing sorbents to capture indoor air pollutants and are developing simulation tools to advance development, design, and deployment of air cleaning technologies that will deliver energy savings.


Researchers are advancing outcome-based codes; data transparency policies; an open-source audit tool; and new financing mechanisms to expand the global market for energy efficiency technologies by $60 billion annually by 2025.

CERC BEE Partners (Headquarter Locations)

The CERC Building Energy Efficiency Consortium currently includes the following U.S. members:

  • Lead:
  • Partners:
    • 3M (St. Paul, MN)
    • BASF (Florham Park, NJ)
    • Citibank (New York, NY)
    • Dow Chemical Company (Midland, MI)
    • Energy Foundation, China Sustainable Energy Program (San Francisco, CA)
    • Energy Systems Group (Newburgh, IN)
    • Forest City (Cleveland, OH)
    • Heller Manus (San Francisco, CA)
    • ICF International (Fairfax, VA)
    • Institute for Market Transformation (Washington DC)
    • International Living Futures Institute (ILFI) (Seattle, WA)
    • Johnson Controls (Milwaukee, WI)
    • Lend Lease (New York, NY)
    • Lumen Cache (McCordsville, IN)
    • Lutron Electronics (Coopersburg, PA)
    • Microgrid Design of Mendocino (Comptche, CA)
    • Natural Resources Defense Council (Washington DC)
    • New Building Institute (Portland, OR)
    • Nextek Power Systems (Detroit, MI)
    • NextEnergy (Detroit, MI)
    • Oak Ridge National Laboratory (Oak Ridge, TN)
    • Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute (Chicago, IL)
    • Rocky Mountain Institute (Basalt, CO)
    • Saint Gobain (Malvern, PA)
    • The Paulson Institute (Chicago, IL)
    • United Technologies Corporation/United Technologies Research Center (Hartford, CT)
    • University of South Florida (Tampa, FL)
    • University of Tennessee (Knoxville, TN)
    • US Green Buildings Council (Washington, DC)
    • Walt Disney Imagineering (Glendale, CA)
    • WattStopper (San Jose, CA)
    • Word Resources Institute Building Efficiency Accelerator (BEA) (Washington, DC)

The CERC Building Energy Efficiency Consortium currently includes the following Chinese members:

  • Lead:
    • Center of Science and Technology of Construction, Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development (MOHURD) (Beijing)
  • Partners:
    • Beijing Persagy Energy Saving Technology (Beijing)
    • Beijing University of Civil Engineering and Architecture (BUCEA) (Beijing)
    • China Academy of Building Research (CABR) (Beijing)
    • China Association of Building Energy Efficiency (CABEE) (Beijing)
    • China Merchants Shekou Industrial Zone Holdings Co. Ltd (Shenzen)
    • China State Construction and Engineering Corporation (CSCEC) (Beijing)
    • National Center for Climate Change Strategy and International Cooperation (NCSC) (Beijing)
    • Shenzhen Institute for Building Research (SZIBR) (Shenzen)
    • Tsinghua University (Beijing)
    • Xiamen University (Xiamen)
    • Zhuhai Xingye Green Construction Technology Co. Ltd (Zhuhai)