The availability and quality of weather data for use in building energy calculations has never been better than now, with increasing access on the Web to real-time weather station reports and satellite-derived solar radiation data covering entire continents dating back a decade or more. This talk describes the rapidly evolving state of that raw data, the more established sources such as national bureaus of meteorology, as well as more unorthodox sources such as climate forecasting or regional climate computer programs, and the practical aspects of turning that data into weather files usable in building energy simulations. Joe touches upon issues such as accounting for urban microclimate variations, potential climate change effects, as well some often overlooked details about how weather data is compiled in different countries.
Joe Huang is the president of White Box Technologies, a small consultant company that he established in 2007 after having worked as a staff scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory for over 26 years. During his time at LBNL, Joe was involved in the development of the EnergyPlus building energy simulation program, and the use of simulations to evaluate new building technologies and develop building energy standards in many countries around the world. Since building energy simulations requires weather data, Joe also became involved in their development, starting with China in 1985, followed by Pakistan and Southeast Asia in 1989, Mexico in 1996, Egypt in 2004, etc.
After retirement from LBNL, Joe has continued to work on weather data, including developing large data sets of “typical year” weather for ASHRAE, California Energy Commission, and ISHRAE (India).
In 2012 he launched an online web store weather.whiteboxtechnologies.com that now contains both “typical year” and historical weather data going back to 2001 for over 8,000 locations around the world. Joe has also completed several projects to study the potential impacts of Climate Change on building energy use in the US and California, and is past chair of ASHRAE TC 4.2 on Climatic Information and TC 4.7 on Energy Calculations.