Building Energy Software Tools
Formerly hosted by US Dept. of Energy    

BSIMAC

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BSIMAC's three main functions are: (a) calculation of the cooling/heating loads and the required capacities of HVAC equipment, (b) annual energy simulation of the building and HVAC equipment, and (c) calculation of the expected room (space) temperatures with no cooling or heating on summer and winter design days. These three functions require virtually the same input data. The computations are carried out on an hour-by-hour basis. Heat transfer through walls is calculated using a conduction transfer function, with its coefficients determined for each wall/roof construction using the ‘State-Space’ method. Computations of the heat gains through glazing are based on the principles of radiant heat transfer using the solar-optical properties of the glazing element, solar radiation intensities and angles, and the effects of shading.

BSIMAC has been successfully tested in accordance with ANSI/ASHRAE 140-2007. These tests have been independently verified by Agrément South Africa. BSIMAC has been certified by Agrément South Africa as "Tested and approved fit for modelling or calculation purposes" for all classes of buildings. Full Certificate available upon request.

Expertise Required: 

High-level expertise is not required. Basic knowledge of thermal behaviour of buildings would be helpful.

Audience: 

Architects, HVAC Engineers, Sustainability Consultants.

Input: 

The input of building dimensional data is done directly from building plans which are then marked to provide a permanent record and cross-reference with the data entered into BSIMAC. The input of all other data is highly automated. A single click will import a typical wall or roof construction, a building material, an insulating material, or a job (project) locality with its weather files. The user can easily create his own constructions and save them for future use in other jobs. The input is structured so that repeatable data needs to be entered only once. It is later retrieved by reference where required. A comprehensive User Manual is included and contextual Help is available on most input screens giving explanations and default values for the required input.

All input can be printed, or saved as pdf or text files for further processing.

Output: 

Output is available in both tabular and graphical forms with various amounts of detail. Summary tables provide key figures as required, e.g. for HVAC design or annual energy summary. More detailed tables show hourly component loads to facilitate checking and assist in better understanding of the computed results.

All output can be displayed on the screen, directed to a printer, or saved as pdf or text files for further processing.

Strengths: 

Fast simulation – annual energy simulation results are available in minutes, not hours - achieved through efficient programming and data handling, without reducing the accuracy. Hourly climatic design data for over 5000 world locations can be generated from within BSIMAC using an internal routine. Additional weather data can be imported to BSIMAC from international weather data in formats, such as TMY, TMY2, EPW and others. HVAC simulation includes VRV (VRF) systems with heat recovery. An option is available to exclude convective heat gains from high roofs and skylights. BSIMAC is a stand-alone program - independent of the Internet or a server.

Country: 
South Africa
Major Capabilities: 
Whole-building Energy Simulation
Load Calculations
HVAC System Selection and Sizing
Language: 
English
Platform: 
Windows
Pricing: 
Free To Try
Help and Support: 
Free Email Support
Last Software Update: 
02 October 2015
Last Entry Update: 
02 October 2015
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