Energy Manager

$1 million new funding for Smart Net-zero Energy Buildings Strategic Network

May 4, 2013 - The NSERC Smart Net-zero Energy Buildings Strategic Network (SNEBRN)—a nationwide university initiative headquartered at Concordia—has just received $1 million in new funding from NRCan (Natural Resources Canada) to help it conduct further research and testing of building technologies.

May 5, 2013
By Anthony Capkun

“Concordia is ideally positioned to play a strong role in the nationwide research effort to invent and refine the smart energy solutions of tomorrow,” said Alan Shepard, president of Concordia University. “This new grant from NRCan builds on the solar energy expertise established through the Solar Buildings Research Network, which was headquartered at Concordia from 2005-2010.”

The research has two principle aims: Proof of Concept studies that demonstrate the effectiveness of new technologies; and validation studies that show how these technologies can be integrated in the built environment.

Created in December 2011 with major funding from the Natural Sciences and Research Council of Canada (NSERC), SNEBRN brings together 29 Canadian researchers from 15 universities to develop the smart net-zero energy homes and commercial buildings of the future. The goal is to invent and implement technologies that make it possible for buildings to generate as much energy as they consume (net-zero), or even produce more energy than they consume.

Under the directorship of Andreas Athienitis, a professor in Concordia’s Department of Building, Civil and Environmental Engineering, SNEBRN aims to ensure engineers obtain the skills they need to become part of Canada’s clean energy workforce. One of the new technologies Athienitis has helped to pioneer is building-integrated photovoltaic thermal systems (BIPV/T), which produce both electrical and thermal energy. A BIPV/T system currently helps power and heat Concordia’s John Molson School of Business.