The NSERC Smart Net-Zero Energy Buildings Strategic Network (SNEBSN) will conduct research aimed at facilitating the widespread adoption of optimized net-zero energy buildings (NZEBs) design and operation concepts in key regions of Canada by 2030. These buildings are well suited to Canadian climatic conditions and construction practices and will ultimately influence long-term national policy on the design of net-zero energy buildings. The network will provide training to leaders who join universities, industry and government and will bring together a variety of disciplines and partners to demonstrate the value of innovative NZEBs concepts.
The primary goal of SNEBSN is to investigate the best ways to achieve zero average annual energy consumption at both the building and neighbourhood levels through combinations of passive systems and dynamic building envelope technologies. This includes building-integrated solar systems and high-performance windows with active control of solar gains, short-term and seasonal thermal storage, heat pump systems, combined heat and power technologies, and smart controls.
Experts from related sectors, including electricity management and urban planning, will work together as part of a network of 15 Canadian universities with headquarters at Concordia University. SNEBSN also involves top researchers working in the general area of energy and buildings and includes the support of 20 industrial and government partners.
The effective design and operation of a smart net-zero energy building requires a number of technological solutions and a multidisciplinary approach. The following research themes have emerged, taking into consideration strategic priorities and lessons learned from the NSERC Solar Buildings Strategic Research Network: