The facility, which is claimed to be the world’s most advanced lab for studying energy efficiency in buildings, includes a rotating test bed to track and test sun exposure impacts, and other features.

The company currently taking advantage of FLEXLAB is Genentech, which is leveraging the facility to test systems for a new building at their South San Francisco headquarters.

PG&E is also planning to utilise the facility to test the next generation of technologies on building systems.

US Department of Energy (DOE) Deputy Secretary Daniel Poneman said about 40% of all energy and over two-thirds of all electricity consumed in the country goes to operate commercial, industrial and residential buildings.

"To power these buildings, Americans spend more than $400 billion every year. By making buildings more energy efficient, we can save money by saving energy and drive the nation to our low-carbon future," Poneman said.

Berkeley Lab director Paul Alivisatos said the laboratory’s energy efficiency work has so far saved American families, businesses, and institutions many billions of dollars in energy bills.

"If all goes as planned, FLEXLAB – the first of its kind test bed designed to enable much more aggressive whole building energy savings – will add to that impressive tab," Alivisatos added.

University of California manages Berkeley Lab for the US DOE.

University of California president Janet Napolitano said, "FLEXLAB will allow us to cut building emissions even further, and lessons learned here will be instrumental in helping UC reach its carbon neutrality goal by 2025."

Image: Berkeley Lab’s FLEXLAB Facility. Photo: Courtesy of Berkeley Lab.