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New ideas to help universities attract and empower STEM students

January 21, 2016 | by Stephen Blair, PE, LEED AP, Cannon Design | Comments

Projections released by the U.S. Department of Education paint a bright future for jobs in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) fields. As populations grow, natural resources diminish, disease prevention and treatment become more complex and evolutionary and universal mysteries continue to be explored, STEM will remain critical to expanding human knowledge and solving challenges of today and for the future.

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Benchmarking: The Benefits and Limitations in Research Space Planning

January 27, 2016 2:59 pm | by Sarah Holton, AIA, LEED AP, CLSS, Payette | Comments

When planning new research space, using benchmark data assists the decision-making process as it enables the client to understand what peer institutions are doing in similar situations. Benchmark data can also compare metrics between different researchers within an organization.

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Sustainable lab equipment: What’s new, what’s possible

December 7, 2015 4:00 pm | by Victor J. Cardona and Christopher Vanneste, SmithGroupJJR | Comments

A building’s energy use intensity (EUI) is measured by the number of kBtus of energy it needs to operate per square foot per year. Code-compliant buildings meet the current energy standard set by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (usually ASHRAE 90.1 2010).

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The importance of LEED certification

December 7, 2015 1:30 pm | by Victoria David, AIA, LEED GA, Iron Horse Architects | Comments

The existing stock of federal labs is aged and decrepit. The difficulties in renovating these older buildings become evident once one begins redesigning for new space using federal mandates that require adherence to LEED certification, Federal Guiding Principles and Labs21’s Environmental Performance Criteria (EPC).

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Interdisciplinary science in academic research

December 7, 2015 11:00 am | by Charles S. Klee, AIA, LEED AP, Principal, Payette | Comments

In the late ‘90s, we observed a push for shared open flexible labs. The idea was to address collaboration, efficiency and cost control through furniture installations in generic open space. While this approach led to innovative facilities supporting cutting-edge research, it targeted biochemical research and worked well for buildings with stable, repetitive programs.

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2015 I2SL sustainable lab abstracts

December 6, 2015 6:00 pm | by Phil Wirdzek | Comments

The 2015 I2SL Annual Conference, held in San Diego, Calif., September 21 through 23, was the 17th consecutive lab sustainability conference for high-tech facility engineers, architects, planners, developers, operators, users and owners.

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SIUE New Wet Sciences Building: A unique perspective on sustainability through architecture, technology and innovative teaching models

December 6, 2015 1:00 pm | by Robert Bohack, AIA, LEED AP, Senior Associate/Project Architect, and Leslie Garner, LEED AP BD+C, GGP, GPCP, Sustainability Expert & Director of Columbia Office, Hastings+Chivetta Architects, Inc. | Comments

The Southern Illinois Univ. Edwardsville Science Dept. had outgrown and worn-out their mid-1960’s science building. Over the course of nearly 50 years, the university enrollment greatly increased and the schools of pharmacy, nursing and dentistry were added, straining the current building. The lab casework, fume hoods and equipment were well past their expected lifecycles.

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Lab sustainability: Time to look at waste vapors?

December 5, 2015 8:00 pm | by Peter Coffey, VP of Marketing, VACUUBRAND Inc., and Ken Crooks, Director of GreenFumeHood Technology, Erlab | Comments

Discussions of lab vapor management in the context of sustainability tend to focus on energy conservation without compromising personnel safety. Fume hoods use a lot of energy to protect users from noxious vapors, so we look for safe ways to reduce that energy burden. What we don’t talk about is where all the exhausted vapors go, though we know they don’t just disappear.

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The top ten triple bottom line for lab design

December 5, 2015 4:00 pm | by Mark Paskanik, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP BD+C, and Nicholas Caronna, PE, LEED AP BD+C, CRB | Comments

Lab owners are challenged to create new research environments with shrinking available budgets and resources. Nowadays, lab designers must consider the triple bottom line (people, planet and profit), all within the same budgetary constraints.

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Cost-effective sustainability and 'the cost of LEEDv4'

December 5, 2015 12:00 pm | by Blake Jackson, AIA, LEED Faculty, Associate/ Sustainability Practice Leader, Tsoi/Kobus & Associates | Comments

As the sustainability movement matures and LEEDv4 becomes “law” in October 2016, the market is scrambling to understand its impacts regarding obligations for LEED certification, cost control, stricter codes and more complex team/project integration. While most clients value environmental stewardship, placing a higher priority on sustainability—and creating an opportunity for innovation—presents major hurdles.

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Research workplace: Blurring the lines

December 4, 2015 8:00 pm | by Mary Carroll, Kevin Chriswell and Scott McNallan, CRB | Comments

Lab research facilities have been traditionally segregated into departments, and those departments are then further separated by office areas and lab space. As such, researchers and staff are often isolated and disconnected from one another.

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Leveraging construction BIM in facility management and research operations

December 4, 2015 5:00 pm | by Eric Hall, Chief Technology Officer, Innovations 10:01 | Comments

The Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF) is the newest lab facility at the U.S. Dept. of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colo. On behalf of the owners, JE Dunn Construction and the project team utilized Building Information Modeling (BIM) during design and construction.

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Building a sustainable research future on hallowed ground

December 4, 2015 4:00 pm | by Tom Fortier, AIA, LEED AP BD+C and Paul Woolford, AIA, LEED AP, HOK | Comments

The 350,000-sf NOAA Inouye Regional Center (IRC) encompasses the adaptive re-use of two historic World War II-era airplane hangars linked by a new addition on a national historic landmark site on Pearl Harbor’s Ford Island. The campus consolidates hundreds of employees from around the island in a state-of-the-art, LEED Gold-certified research and administrative campus.

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Validating cost and energy savings from Shut the Sash programs at Harvard

December 4, 2015 2:00 pm | by Quentin Gilly, Senior Coordinator, Green Labs Program, Harvard Univ. | Comments

The Shut the Sash Competition at Harvard Univ. is considered one of the most effective behavior change programs on campus for reducing energy and greenhouse gas emissions. The engagement program started in 2005 and now includes 19 labs spread throughout the Dept. of Chemistry & Chemical Biology and the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

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Masdar City: Technology cluster hub facilities used in designing the Masdar Headquarters, UAE

December 4, 2015 1:00 pm | by Mehdi Jalayerian, PE LEED AP and Tyler Jensen, PE LEED AP, Environmental Systems Design Inc. | Comments

Masdar City is a planned net-zero energy city in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). The Masdar Initiative is the bold vision of Abu Dhabi as the first major hydrocarbon-producing economy to transform itself into a global leader in new sustainable energy technologies. Its vision is to create a sustainable city providing the highest quality of life with the lowest environmental footprint.

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Rock the Watt: Lessons Learned From a Conservation Campaign at PNNL

December 4, 2015 12:00 pm | by Kathleen Judd, Senior Research Scientist, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory | Comments

In 2014, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL)'s Sustainability Program team launched Rock the Watt, a three-month energy-conservation campaign to promote sustainable behavior in lab and office spaces. The campaign involved more than 1,000 occupants in 14 buildings and building-level volunteers.

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