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Ithaca firm awarded federal grant for energy-efficiency program work

By Eric Reinhardt (


ITHACA, N.Y. — The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has awarded Performance Systems Development of Ithaca a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant for its proposed project, “Supercharging Standardized Asset Data with EnergyPlus.” 

The DOE’s Building Technologies Office funded nine SBIR Phase II Release 2 projects, totaling $8.9 million, including the PSD award. The DOE didn’t list specific dollar amounts for the grants awarded in its Aug. 3 news release announcing the funding.

Performance Systems Development (PSD) says it a provider of energy-efficiency programs and software services, including its Compass software platform, for utilities and their customers. PSD’s main office is located at 124 Brindley St. in Ithaca.

The phase II project seeks to help building owners improve the real-estate value of their energy-efficient properties, expand the range of utility-rebate incentives available to customers, and reduce the costs associated with obtaining financial-rebate incentives. 

Through the SBIR grant funding, PSD says it will expand its engineering and software-development teams in Ithaca and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. 

“We continue to grow our data-configuration services because of [research & development (R&D)] grants like this. This project will allow us to grow our software-development team in Ithaca and Philadelphia,” Rich Andrulis, director of product development and delivery, said. 

The SBIR program is a DOE initiative intended to help small businesses conduct R&D to meet specific energy needs. PSD will use DOE funding to build software products that help states and utilities use energy efficiency to support the electrification of buildings as part of meeting climate-change decarbonization goals.

Key partners on the project include the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and Honeywell. 

“Utilizing these new software tools with our partners will help energy efficiency programs become more efficient and access deeper savings,” Greg Thomas, founder of PSD and the project’s principal investigator, said. “They will also add more real-estate value to the homes that are improved. These research and development investments are critical as we all work to decarbonize our buildings.” 

PSD was selected as one of 110 SBIR/STTR (Small Business Technology Transfer) Phase II awardees to build on years of DOE research and development programs like EnergyPlus, HPXML, and Home Energy Score to streamline and credential energy calculations for utility programs. 

“We are excited that this work demonstrates how DOE’s investments in simulation tools and data standards can be leveraged to reduce the cost of energy efficiency programs and support state and national goals for building decarbonization,” Madeline Salzman, management & programs analyst at the U.S. Department of Energy, contended. “This effort will put building energy data to work in New York and other states to simplify heat pump and efficiency deployment and combat the climate crisis.”        

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