Mission Statement

Identify, develop, and deploy sustainable and energy-efficient building system technologies by forming partnerships between the public sector and private industry for analysis, well-characterized experiments, technology development, and market outreach.

A National User Facility

The Buildings Technology Center (BTC) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the premier U.S. research facility devoted to the development of technologies that improve the energy efficiency and environmental compatibility of residential and commercial buildings. Established by the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Building Technologies, the BTC is a designated "National User Facility," which means that its facilities are available to manufacturers, universities, and other organizations for proprietary and nonproprietary research and development.

Aerial View of the BTC

The BTC is housed in a cluster of six buildings offering 20,000 square feet of space and state-of-the-art experimental facilities valued at over $6 million. A permanent staff of 59, continually supplemented by 10 to 20 guest researchers, operate the BTC. Annual program expenditures are about $18 million. BTC expertise centers around eight program themes:

Heating and Cooling Equipment

  • Vapor Compression
  • Absorption
  • Desiccants

Thermal Environmental Engineering

Envelope Systems

  • Roofs, Walls, Foundations
  • Fenestrations

Building Design and Performance

  • Rebuild America
  • Residential and Commercial Buildings Research
  • Industrialized Housing
  • Buildings for the 21st Century

State and Community Programs

Federal Energy Management Program

Power Systems Research

Communications and Market Outreach


A variety of arrangements are available for potential users to access the center. User agreements allow users to work on their projects with BTC staff. Cooperative research and development agreements (CRADAs) enable users to share research costs with the Department of Energy. Work for Others Agreements enable the BTC to carry out proprietary research for full cost recovery. To date, nearly 300 organizations have used the facility under 36 separate agreements. Users include organizations such as Dow Chemical, Du Pont, Allied Signal, the Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Clayton Homes, Dow Corning, and the National Roofing Contractors Association. Academic institutions such as the University of Minnesota, the Technical University of Denmark, and Tennessee State University have served as partners with the BTC.

For more information, contact the director of the Buildings Technology Center:

Jeff Christian
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
P.O. Box 2008, MS 6070
Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37831-6070

Phone Number: (423) 574-5207
Fax Number: (423) 574-9338
E-mail: jef@ornl.gov

Or the secretary of the Buildings Technology Center:

Joan E. Carrington
Oak Ridge National Laboratory
P.O. Box 2008, MS 6070
Oak Ridge, Tennessee 37831-6070

Phone Number: (423) 574-5206
Fax Number: (423) 574-5227
E-mail: ijc@ornl.gov


Other Links of Interest

Updated January 6, 2000