Pivotal Energy Solutions is a technology company focused on delivering innovative software solutions for the energy efficiency industry.
AXIS, our flagship product, is a cloud-hosted software platform designed to enable operational efficiencies and transparency for energy efficiency program administrators, participants, and downstream stakeholders.
APEX, a web-based simulation solution, enables much needed consistency missing from the industry today for residential energy efficiency program sponsors and downstream stakeholders while maintaining flexibility for energy raters and modelers to utilize their preferred simulation engines.
Pivotal's mission is to enable the transformation of the energy efficiency industry through innovative software solutions that deliver efficiency, accuracy, and transparency. Our passion is to create and deliver software solutions that radically improve the way energy efficiency data is collected and shared to empower a more sustainable future for our world.
AXIS, used by leading program sponsors such as NEEA and Energy Trust of Oregon, and most recently deployed for the national NGBS Green program, serves as a centralized data collection, storage, and sharing hub with integrated workflow management and messaging functionality. In addition to supporting the RESNET energy rating and NGBS Green certification processes, the modular architecture of AXIS allows for customization of functionality, visibility, and workflows to meet program-specific needs.
AXIS is a cloud-based data and workflow management platform that streamlines energy ratings and energy efficiency program participation through data sharing by connecting raters/verifiers, certification organizations, QA organizations, utilities and others using a centralized data repository and modern user interface. Contact us to learn more about AXIS.
- Manage all of your projects in a single database
- Import REM/Rate™ or Ekotrope data and populate inspection checklists
- Share rating data directly with your Provider
- Perform QA, report findings, and certify homes
- Create custom Energy Efficiency Programs (EEPs) and define program data collection requirements and incentive levels
- Review home inspection and energy model data
- Process incentive payments
- Store program documentation
- Generate custom certificates and reports
- Immediate access to Rater inspection and modeling data
- Track incentive payments
- Review energy savings prior to construction
- Generate customized reports and marketing material
APEX, a residential new construction simulation and analysis solution, leverages the power of NREL's EnergyPlus and OpenStudio-ERI simulation platform to enable generation of an energy rating index (ERI) and energy consumption data that may be used for a variety of purposes including eligibility for 45L tax credits, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgage-backed security offerings, performance-based energy code compliance, sustainability/ESG reporting, and incentive calculation for utility incentive programs. APEX is a powerful and much needed solution for the residential energy efficiency industry and can be accessed through our AXIS integration or directly through an API.
- Analyze REM/Rate™ or Ekotrope energy models for inconsistencies
- Compare your simulator's results with EnergyPlus/OpenStudio-ERI results
- Re-simulate submissions with EnergyPlus/OpenStudio-ERI for normalized consumption calculations
- Design custom, program-specific User-Defined Reference Homes (UDRH's)
- Perform bulk EnergyPlus/OpenStudio-ERI simulations for "what-if" analysis
- Determine 45L and GSE MBS eligibility with DOE funded, non-proprietary simulator
- Generate simulator agnostic, normalized ESG reporting data
Home Innovation Research Labs Celebrates Certification of 500,000th Green Home in the NGBS Green Program
Home Innovation Research Labs proudly announces a significant milestone in sustainable housing with the certification of the 500,000th green home to the National Green Building Standard (NGBS). The project that helped NGBS Green reach this point was Bluebird, a permanent supportive housing facility in Boulder, CO. The NGBS Green Verifier on the project was Sarah Hong, PE, Energy Project Manager for Group14 Engineering, PBC.
The 500,000th NGBS Green Certified Home, Bluebird, is a housing tax credit project developed by Element Properties to provide permanent supportive housing to those experiencing homelessness.
Many of the design features that were pursued to address sustainability, energy + water efficiency, and occupant health and well-being aligned with NGBS principles, allowing the building to achieve NGBS Silver certification. The project also has an energy-efficient design that achieves an EUI of 31.4 kbtu/SF/year – 21% below Colorado’s 2030 benchmarking target. Key features include an above-code envelope, ENERGY STAR appliances, WaterSense-equivalent plumbing fixtures, and high-efficiency cold-climate packaged heat pumps. A central ERV was installed for ventilation, which not only reduces energy consumption, but also provides improved climate resilience and indoor air quality with MERV 13+ filters that are able to capture airborne particulates and pollutants resulting from regional wildfires.
In consideration of its resident population, the building has been designed with trauma-informed design strategies to provide a safe, supportive space for people who have been homeless for years. The site is also located in a central area of Boulder with easy access to bike paths, walking trails, and public transportation, and each resident gets a free bus pass. There is also an onsite solar PV system that not only reduces the energy cost burden on tenants but also reduces the building's greenhouse gas emissions by 12%. The building was designed by Shopworks Architecture and built by I-Kota.
The NGBS Green program, administered by Home Innovation Research Labs, is a comprehensive and rigorous certification that recognizes homes for their commitment to sustainability. Achieving this milestone highlights the growing commitment of homeowners, builders, and communities across the nation to create more sustainable and resilient living spaces.
"We are thrilled to reach the monumental achievement of certifying the 500,000th green home in the NGBS Green program," said Michelle Foster, VP of Sustainability at Home Innovation Research Labs. " This accomplishment underscores the industry’s commitment to the design and construction of sustainable buildings that have a smaller impact on the planet and a big impact on the resident’s lives. Bluebird also showcases the positive impact that sustainable housing can have on our communities."
The NGBS Green program provides a framework for builders and developers to construct homes that are not only energy-efficient but also healthier for occupants and kinder to the environment. The certification process evaluates various aspects of a home, including energy performance, water usage, indoor air quality, and resource efficiency. By meeting the stringent criteria set forth by the NGBS Green program, homeowners can be confident that their homes are contributing to a more sustainable and resilient future.
Learn more about the NGBS Green program by visiting HomeInnovation.com/NGBSGreen today.
Pivotal Energy Solutions, LLC, based in the Phoenix Arizona metropolitan area, has announced a new simulation solution targeting the residential new construction market. APEX, a simulation solution that utilizes the U.S. Department of Energy’s EnergyPlus simulation engine and OpenStudio-ERI calculation platform, enables the simulation of residential energy model data to generate energy rating index (ERI) and consumption results. APEX results may be used for a variety of purposes including eligibility for 45L tax credits, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgage-backed security offerings, performance-based energy code compliance, sustainability/ESG reporting, and incentive calculation for utility incentive programs.
APEX offers unique functionality for energy raters and modelers, utilities and other energy efficiency program sponsors, home builders, code officials, and downstream stakeholders to both validate energy models against specific program requirements and simulate those models using standard program reference homes and/or custom, program-specific user defined reference homes (UDRH’s). APEX’s input validation functionality – which can be run independently from simulation – performs automated checks on the energy model input values to ensure they not only fall within prescribed bounds but are also internally consistent with other home characteristics and specified values. This functionality enables energy raters and modelers to identify and correct issues with their energy models prior to simulation or submission to energy efficiency program administrators.
APEX supports the simulation of energy models using the U.S. Department of Energy’s EnergyPlus and OpenStudio-ERI simulation engine and calculation platform. The EnergyPlus/OpenStudio-ERI solution is an open-source offering from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), meaning that the source code of the software is accessible to anyone to read, examine, and critique – proprietary simulators do not support the same level of transparency. The EnergyPlus/OpenStudio-ERI platform provides consistent, accurate results for an industry under increasing scrutiny due to the availability of 45L federal tax credits for homes meeting specific ERI targets and conforming to federal energy efficiency program requirements.
APEX’s support for standard reference homes and custom user defined reference homes (UDRH’s) also enables unique flexibility within the industry. Using a single energy model, APEX can perform simulations using any number of program-specific reference homes or custom UDRH’s. For example, eligibility for ENERGY STAR, DOE Zero Energy Ready, performance-based energy code compliance, and utility program incentives can all be determined through a single submission to APEX. Energy efficiency program developers and sponsors can also use APEX to enforce program requirements using the APEX input validation and custom UDRH capability to define energy efficiency targets and incentives as their programs evolve. APEX supports energy consumption and ERI calculation for ENERGY STAR, DOE ZERH, and virtually any utility and/or municipality performance-based program.
Bob Burns, co-founder of Pivotal, said, “We’re very excited to be offering this new solution to the industry. APEX enables utilities, builders, code officials, and downstream markets that rely on the modeled performance of homes to utilize a single, DOE-funded, open-source simulation engine, which we believe is a huge benefit to multiple stakeholders. APEX can serve as a ‘normalization tool’ to enable energy raters and modelers to use whichever modeling software they prefer while also providing a single, standard set of results generated by re-simulation of the original input data with EnergyPlus.”
The APEX simulation solution is currently integrated into Pivotal’s AXIS cloud-based platform used for the administration of and participation in a variety of “green” and energy efficient buildings programs. In the near future, APEX simulation and analysis solutions will also be offered as stand-alone cloud-based solution accessible through an application programming interface, or API, for easy integration into existing utility program infrastructure and back office applications.
Burns concluded, “APEX is a very powerful solution being introduced at exactly the right time to meet the residential new construction industry’s needs and support our country’s push toward a more sustainable future. We’re excited that we can play a role in the evolution of the industry.”
For more information about APEX, AXIS or other Pivotal software offerings, please click here to contact us.
Home Innovation Research Labs and Pivotal Energy Solutions have announced that Pivotal's AXIS software platform will be deployed as the online web portal supporting participation in and administration of the NGBS Green certification program as of September 7, 2021.
After several years of regional success with AXIS in Arizona and the Pacific Northwest, this will be the first deployment of AXIS supporting a national program. Pivotal has worked as a technical partner with Home Innovation Research Labs since 2016 to surface NGBS Green certifications within the AXIS database for use in analytics and markets utilizing green and energy efficiency certification data. Most recently, Home Innovation and Pivotal have been pursuing opportunities to auto-populate NGBS Green certification data within real estate MLS platforms.
Bob Burns, president of Pivotal, said, "This is an exciting next step for Pivotal in working with Home Innovation to develop and support their online portal for the NGBS Green program. We're thrilled to have this collaboration and to expand the use of AXIS to the national level."
With the transition of the NGBS Green program to the AXIS platform, NGBS Green Verifiers and clients will be able to register projects, submit verification reports and compliance documentation, and monitor project status in real-time 24/7/365 from any modern internet web browser. The volume of data available for downstream consumers will also be enhanced with the transition.
Michelle Foster, Vice President of Sustainability for Home Innovation, added, "We are so excited to be working with Pivotal to streamline our NGBS Green certification process and provide even more value for our clients. We're confident that over time NGBS Green Verifiers and clients will benefit from using the online portal and that it will enable Home Innovation to move the NGBS program forward in exciting new ways. We are also eager to provide greater transparency for the NGBS Green certification process which will benefit investors, financial institutions, government agencies, and the industry as a whole."
If you are interested in learning more about AXIS or the solutions that Pivotal offers, visit www.pivotalenergysolutions.com.
To learn more about the NGBS certification program, visit www.homeinnovation.com/services/certification/green_homes.