11:00 – 12:00     Setup

12:00 – 12:30     Networking / Lunch

12:30 – 12:45     Chapter Introduction

12:45 – 01:15
     NIST Presentations

1:15 – 02:45     Tours

2:45 – 03:00     Wrap Up

Thursday, June 16th: NIST Tour of Net Zero Home & Intelligent Agents Lab

area and storage capacity, a 10.2 kW photovoltaic system, and a ducted heat recovery ventilation system. The facility also incorporates three different means of providing conditioned air throughout the house – a sealed sheet metal air distribution system; a high-velocity air distribution system; and provisions to incorporate a multi-head mini split heat pump system. 

Net Zero Energy Residential Test Facility (NZERTF)

The Intelligent Agents Laboratory

Participants will need to stop at the NIST Visitor Center, 100 Bureau Drive, Gaithersburg, MD, to pick up badges and for registration.  From there, they will proceed to Building 224, Room B245 for the event. 

This event will showcase the research performed by Dr. William Healy and Dr. Amanda Pertzborn in the area of energy efficiency for residential and commercial applications. We will tour the Net-Zero Energy Residential Test Facility (NZERTF) as well as the “Intelligent Agents Lab”. Our event will begin with lunch & networking at 12:00, with presentations followed by tours beginning promptly at 12:30. The tours will be split up into two groups and will require a short walk, so make sure to wear comfortable closed toes shoes. 

Bill leads the Heat Transfer and Alternative Energy Systems Group within the Energy and Environment Division at NIST.  He also manages the research program entitled “Net-Zero Energy, High-Performance Buildings,” which focuses on developing the measurement science needed by industry to improve the energy efficiency, indoor environmental quality, and accompanying economics of buildings.  Bill’s research interests have included residential energy efficiency, test methods for water heating systems, and advanced sensing systems for buildings.  He received a BS from Cornell University and a Ph.D. from Georgia Tech. 


Dr. Amanda Pertzborn received her BS, MS, and Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin - Madison.  She worked at ORBITEC, a small company in Madison, WI, that pursues SBIR grants from NASA, between her BS and MS degrees; and she worked at Knolls Atomic Power Laboratory, a government lab in Niskayuna, NY, that supports/designs nuclear reactors for the Navy, between her MS and Ph.D. degrees.  Dr. Pertzborn completed her Ph.D. in June 2013 and is currently a Mechanical Engineer at the National Institute of Standards and Technology.  Her work focuses on improving the efficiency of HVAC systems in commercial buildings by incorporating artificial intelligence into the control scheme.  


The  Intelligent Agents laboratory was created to assess whether intelligent agents (combinations of software and hardware—sensors, mechanical devices and computing technologies—that perceive their environment, make decisions and take actions in response) dispersed among a structure's multitudes of devices and subsystems can parse time-of-day pricing, weather forecasts, availability of renewable energy supplies, and occupancy patterns to adjust individual equipment and systems to achieve optimal overall performance.  

The Net-Zero Energy Residential Test Facility (NZERTF) demonstrates that it is possible to achieve net-zero for a house with conventional architecture, amenities, and size compared to homes in the surrounding area. The facility also serves as a test bed to evaluate residential renewable and energy efficient technologies and various approaches to improving indoor air quality. The test facility has three independent ground source heat exchangers, a radiant basement floor heating system, a solar hot water system with variable solar collector

Using a real building HVAC system under controlled laboratory conditions will enable meaningful comparisons of prototype intelligent agents.  This building-in-a-lab consists of four zones serviced by two chillers, three air-handling units, four variable air volume units to control air flow and one ice storage tank, plus pumps, heat exchangers, and other equipment. 

Event Location



Thursday, June 16th from 11am - 3pm


National Institute of Standards and Technology 
100 Bureau Drive
Gaithersburg, MD 20899