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Covering the basics of Heating, Ventilating and Air Conditioning

direct digital controls this course enables students to understand the fundamentals of HVAC DDC system design. The course emphasizes critical “Do’s and Don’ts” and accepted rule-of-thumb checks in the design of HVAC controls.

Divided into the following four categories, this course provides a sound foundation for understanding DDC system design: 1) The Six Steps of HVAC DDC System Design; 2) DDC Controllers; 3) Basics of HVAC Controls; and 4) Building Automation, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), and Commissioning.

Course Highlights:

  • The Six Steps of HVAC DDC System Design
  • HVAC DDC Components such as Flow Meters, Temperature, Humidity, and Pressure Sensors
  • DDC Controllers, Smart Sensors, and Actuators
  • Application Specific Controllers
  • The Most Commonly used HVAC Control Systems
  • DDC Signals
  • System Schematics
  • Control Point Designations
  • Point List
  • DDC System Architecture

  Course Learning Outcomes:

  • Distinguish between a Digital Output, Digital Input, Analog Input, and Analog Output
  • Learn the systematic process of designing HVAC DDC systems
  • Discern between Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) and Programmable Logic Controller (PLC) systems
  • Discover the three most commonly used wireless technologies for building automation systems
  • Identify the basic characteristics of the five types of the most commonly used HVAC control systems
  • Examine the advantages of Proportional Plus Integral and Proportional Plus Integral Plus Derivative control actions
  • Utilize methods of a building automation system as a tool for commissioning as well as LEED measurement and verification

Required Textbook: “The Fundamentals of HVAC Direct Digital Control, Practical Applications and Design” 4th ed. 2002 by Frank Shadpour. Available through Hacienda Blue Publishing.

Optional Reading: ASHRAE 2016 Handbook - HVAC Systems and Equipment (ISBN-13: 978-1939200273)  and 2015 ASHRAE Handbook -- HVAC Applications (ISBN-13: 978-1936504930)

Course Typically Offered: Online. Please see course matrix as schedule fluctuates.

Prerequisite: Students should have a desire to learn concepts in heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC).

Next Step: Upon completion of this course, consider taking other courses in the HVAC Systems Design and Control program.

Contact: For more information about this course, please email

Course Number: AMES-40170
Credit: 2.00 unit(s)
Related Certificate Programs: HVAC Systems Design and Control

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