TPEx, is a portal designed to help manufacturers and others who test products to share performance data with their consumers.

Commercial building engineers and designers are often approached with novel or underutilized energy efficiency technologies and products. In many cases they cannot verify the supplied performance claims, so they take no action.

Manufacturers that are interested in participating in the TPEx system are asked to submit performance information via standardized documents called data entry forms that make an apples-to-apples comparison between similar products possible, NREL said. Commercial building engineers and designers appear to be the chief target for the information, but NREL says TPEx is designed for a range of users, including consumers as well as industrial and utility users.

There are 17 categories of products, ranging from solid-state replacement lamps to ductless heat pumps to photovoltaic modules. Some of the categories are currently empty. There’s nothing under « heat pump water heaters, » for example, but hundreds of listings under « inverters. »

NREL will presumably be filling in the blanks as times goes on, and in addition promises to add eight new categories, including wind turbines, roofing membranes, fans, and evaporative coolers.

You can’t use the site unless you register, but registration is free. Once you’re signed on, choose a category and start browsing.

In categories where products are currently listed, there’s a great deal of technical information, and you can narrow your search by fine-tuning the parameters. For instance, for photovoltaic panels, you can search by the rated power, the efficiency of the module, the type of cell, and even the nominal operating cell temperature.

Users also can isolate as many as four products for a detailed side-to-side comparison.


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