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Energy Efficient Building Demonstration Project Commenced in the State of New York, U.S.A.
-Aiming to Reduce Energy Consumption in Half Using Japanese Energy-saving and Energy-creation Technologies-

March 23, 2016
New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NEDO)
Shimizu Corporation
Shimizu North America LLC

NEDO, Shimizu Corporation and Shimizu North America LLC, in collaboration with SUNY Polytechnic Institute (SUNY Poly), have completed the installation of energy-saving demonstration technologies in the ZEN (Zero Energy Nanotechnology) Building, built last year at SUNY Poly’s Nanotech Megaplex in Albany, NY. On March 22, 2016, we started demonstration testing with the aim of realizing a Zero-Energy Building (ZEB).

The goal of the project is to reduce energy consumption by approx. 50 percent compared to conventional buildings, by utilizing Japanese energy-saving and energy-creation technologies.

photo : SUNY Poly’s ZEN building where the demonstration testing has commenced
SUNY Poly’s ZEN building where the demonstration testing has commenced


The United States Department of Energy announced the Net-Zero Energy Commercial Building Initiative, which aims to reduce net energy consumption to zero for all newly-constructed commercial buildings by 2030, and for all commercial buildings by 2050. In November 2009, the United States and Japan signed the U.S.-Japan Clean Energy Technologies Action Plan, which calls for U.S.-Japan joint demonstration projects on energy-saving buildings. On September 16, 2013, NEDO and SUNY Poly signed a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) to work on an energy-saving building demonstration project with SUNY Poly. Since then, the two parties have been reviewing technologies, equipment and system architecture necessary to make the ZEN building, completed by SUNY Poly in 2015, a zero energy building (ZEB)*1.

NEDO, Shimizu Corporation and Shimizu North America LLC have recently completed the installation of energy efficiency demonstration technologies in the ZEN building and begun the demonstration project with the aim of realizing a ZEB.

For this project, NEDO commissioned Shimizu Corporation and Shimizu North America LLC to deploy Japanese technologies such as the Shimizu Smart BEMS (Building Energy Management System)*2, an RFID-based positioning system*3, a Gradation Blind system*4, a phosphoric-acid fuel cell (FC) system, and a photovoltaic (PV) power generating system, and to collaborate with SUNY Poly in demonstrating ZEB technologies that utilize precise and advanced Japanese control systems, such as a lightening control system that optimizes lighting intensity by responding to the surrounding environment and human behavior. The goal of the project is for the ZEN Building to achieve a level approx. 54% of a conventional building’s theoretical energy use.

NEDO, Shimizu Corporation and Shimizu North America LLC also plan to disseminate Japanese energy-saving and energy-creation technologies throughout the U.S., as well as introduce them globally.

  • picture : Installed equipment in the ZEN Building
    Installed equipment in the ZEN Building

2.Commencement Ceremony

On March 22, 2016 (local time), a ceremony was held to commemorate the commencement of the operation in SUNY Poly’s ZEN Building. The ceremony was attended by Munehiko Tsuchiya, Executive Director of NEDO, Kazuo Nakamoto, Managing Officer and International Director of Shimizu Corporation, Takeo Yoshigi, CEO of Shimizu North America, David Margalit, COO of the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), Koji Abe, Deputy Chief of Mission , Consulate General of Japan in New York, and Pradeep Haldar, SUNY Poly Vice President of Entrepreneurship Innovation and Clean Energy Programs; and Professor and Head of Nanoeconomics.


*1 ZEB (Zero-Energy Building)
A ZEB combines multiple solutions, including optimization of energy efficiency of building structure and equipment, utilization of renewable energy and under-utilized energy, and local and collaborative (mutual) energy use in the area. A ZEB uses energy that is generated in the building only, and consume zero or almost zero energy from fossil fuels.
*2 Shimizu Smart BEMS (Building Energy Management System)
The Shimizu Smart BEMS, developed by Shimizu Corporation, is an integrated system to monitor and control building equipment and environments.
The system enables automatic energy-saving and peak-shaving operation depending on the conditions and characteristics of the facilities. It is capable of monitoring and controlling HVAC systems and lighting systems as well as power generation facilities such as CHPs (combined heat and power) and PVs.
For this project, it will be used to control lighting and blinds in conjunction with the building automation system, and to monitor the fuel cell and PVs.
*3 RFID-based positioning system
This system identifies the locations of people in the building by using active RFID (radio frequency identification) tags and RFID readers. The system can recognize the number of people per zone in the building, which enables equipment controls based on the occupancy of the spaces.
For this project, it will be used for lighting control by detecting the number of people in each zone in real time. Also, as part of facility management, the system will provide occupants data on how they use the building spaces.
*4 Gradation Blinds
Developed jointly by Shimizu Corporation, Tachikawa Corporation and TOSO Company Limited, this system uses natural light for indoor lighting.
This system controls slat angles of the blinds depending on the altitude of the sun and level of insolation, which change according to the season, time of day, and weather. The system can help reduce energy consumption by utilizing natural light to provide indirect ceiling lighting to lessen lighting loads and reduce heat flow and air conditioning load.

3.For more information, please contact:

NEDO Energy Conservation Technology Department
Contact Persons: Yonezu, Numata
Tel: +81-44-520-5284

NEDO International Affairs Department
Contact Persons: Ishikawa, Okada
Tel: +81-44-520-5190

Shimizu Corporation, International Division
Contact Person: Nakayama
Tel: +81-3-3561-1111

Shimizu North America LLC, General Affairs Department
Contact Person: Onodera
Tel: +1-770-956-1123