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Last edited 08 Jan 2024
ESP-r is an open-source building performance simulation software developed as a research tool. It was originally authored by Professor Joe Clarke at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow Scotland in the mid 1970s, to support dynamic, first principles assessments of building physics across multiple domains.
It has been further developed by numerous reserachers since its first inception and was moved from the University of Strathclyde to a public repository in 2002. In simple terms everthing in the tool is represented as a finite volume which preserves a mass and energy balance at each timestep, the complexity is very much up to the user. The University of Strathclyde descriobe the tool as:
"A general purpose, multi-domain simulation environment which has been under development for three decades. Building thermal behaviour, inter-zone air flow, intra-zone air movement, HVAC systems and electrical power flow can all be simulated in the software. In ESP-r simulation follows description, where additional technical domain solvers are invoked as the building and system descriptions evolve."
"Users have options to set the geometric, environmental control and operational complexity of models to match the requirements of particular projects. ESP-r supports explicit energy balances in each zone and at each surface. It uses message passing between the solvers to support inter-domain interactions. It works with third party tools such as Radiance to support higher resolution assessments as well as interacting with supply and demand matching tools."
"ESP-r is distributed as a suite of tools. A project manger controls the development of models and requests computational services from other modules in the suite as well as 3rd party tools. Supported modules include:
- clm — a weather display/analysis/conversion tool.
- bps — an integrated (all domain) simulation engine.
- cdb — a database manager for graphic plant descriptions.
- dfs — a stand-alone CFD engine.
- e2r — a manager, exporter, controller, and viewer of Radiance models.
- ecnv — a model import and export facility.
- ish — a shading and insolation pre-processor and display tool.
- grd — a 2D and 3D conduction gridding specification tool.
- mfs — a stand-alone network flow solver.
- mld — a stand-alone micotoxin display/reporting tool.
- net — a graphic network topology creation tool.
- pdb — a plant component database management tool.
- prj — the project manager facility.
- res — a graphic simulation predictions display and reporting tool.
- vwf — a suface-to-surface and MRT sensor body view factor calculation tool.
- viewer — a hidden-line model display tool.
"ESP-r can model heat flow in thermal zones, fluid flow using networks or CFD, electrical power flow, moisture flow, contaminant flow, hygrothermal and fluid flow in HVAC systems, as well as visual and acoustic performance aspects within a modeled energy system/building"
For further information about ESP-r visit https://www.esru.strath.ac.uk/Courseware/ESP-r/tour/
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