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Sustainable Laboratory Design and Construction

June 9, 2014 | by Tim Studt, Editorial Director | Comments

Over the past decade, it has become readily apparent that the global environment is increasingly sensitive to human activity. The effects of global warming, increasing energy costs, dramatic climate changes and shortages of raw materials, potable water and food strain the global community.

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Laboratory Design Connection

Solving lab ventilation challenges with fabric HVAC air diffusion

September 10, 2014 11:33 am | by Nick Paschke, DuctSox Corp. | Comments

Most technicians have worked in a lab space with ventilation challenges. Poor lab ventilation can adversely affect air comfort and respiration for occupants, or affect research results via poor temperature control, uneven airflow and drafts. The main cause of ventilation challenges confronting labs today is the introduction of the HVAC supply air with such excessive velocities that the fume exhaust hood capture process is disrupted.

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Wisconsin Energy Institute lab casework design

September 9, 2014 11:57 am | by Kathryn Tyson, AIA, LEED AP BD+C | Comments

What are the new design ideas and features that help meet flexibility goals in a lab design? What new lab features help researchers focus on their science goals? They’re generally features and designs that bring resources to researchers without additional expenditure. Functional and flexible casework can also be pleasing to the eye with simple lines, and heavy duty to withstand heavy use.

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Virtual reality for lab design

September 9, 2014 11:11 am | by Chuck Yocum | Comments

By using a sophisticated 3-D virtual reality (3DVR) visualization program and inputting BIM project data, lab designers can illustrate, in photo-realistic details, the design elements of a project to their clients. These sophisticated programs enable viewers to "see" and “walk through” the lab of the intended final design using a high-definition (HD) headset and motion trackers.

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Real-time monitoring of vibration

September 9, 2014 10:20 am | by Jeffrey A. Zapfe, PhD, President, Acentech Inc. | Comments

It’s no secret that the construction of a new building or the renovation of an existing building involves activities that generate a considerable amount of vibration. Although this is a necessary by-product of the construction process, the ensuing vibrations can have a negative impact on neighboring facilities, particularly those that house vibration-sensitive equipment and activities.

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3-D Printing Builds Up Architecture

August 13, 2014 2:12 pm | by Lindsay Hock, Managing Editor | Comments

In May 2014, a private company in China, WinSun, printed 10 full-size houses using 3-D printers in the space of a day. The process utilized quick-drying cement and construction water to build the walls layer-by-layer. The company used a system of four 10-m-by-6.6-m-high printers with multi-directional sprays to create the houses.

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2014 lab construction outlook

August 12, 2014 11:34 am | by John Gering, AIA and Carlie Campesi | Comments

At the time this report was compiled in June 2014, construction costs continued to show an increase. Overall, costs have risen about 3% from 2013, and construction costs in the R&D sector have risen about 2.9% since January 2013. Construction costs are expected to rise around 3% during 2014, extending into year 2015.

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Changing with the times: Developments for biomedical research labs

August 8, 2014 12:48 pm | by Dan Watch, AIA, LEED AP | Comments

Over the next five years, the varied disciplines of biomedical research will evolve and change in ways that reflect the significant changes in healthcare and medical education. Designing and planning truly state-of-the-art labs is essential not only to keeping institutions competitive and supporting breakthrough science, but also to representing the science conducted in these buildings.

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Glazing design and thermal comfort: It’s more than being cool

August 8, 2014 12:10 pm | by Lynn Petermann, AIA, Alejandra Menchaca, PhD, LEED Green Assoc., and Andrea Love, AIA, LEED AP | Comments

Glazing is a ubiquitous and invaluable architectural feature that gives occupants a connection to the outdoors while lowering lighting energy demand. Unfortunately, the thermal comfort conditions of a space can be compromised by the amount of glazing, the heat loss through the glass—quantified by a variable called U-value—or a combination of both.

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The future of science and technology

August 8, 2014 11:51 am | by Nicholas Koulbanis, AIA, LEED AP, Tsoi/Kobus & Associates and Tyler Virden, Windover Construction | Comments

The mandate of flexible, interdisciplinary teaching and learning spaces is becoming a common provision in the design of today’s academic science buildings. Designers must interpret an institution’s need for flexibility beyond a basic lab planning or classroom module. A strong understanding of adaptable design can help facilitate a model of interdisciplinary study that extends beyond campus boundaries.

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Making a case for soft landing

August 8, 2014 11:32 am | by Bo Petersson, Director of Engineering Services, Cornerstone Commissioning Inc. | Comments

Too many projects start with high hopes by all parties involved, just to find that once the building is completed, it fails to meet performance expectations and is harder to operate than envisioned. This is frustrating for most team players, but none more than the owner. This article focuses on the concept of soft landing and how it can help the successful transition operation of a building.

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A researcher’s lab

August 8, 2014 10:19 am | by Lindsay Hock, Managing Editor | Comments

It’s a known fact that lab design hasn’t always focused on researchers. It wasn’t until a decade ago that facilities have grown and evolved to accommodate researcher’s needs when planning lab space. As labs are very equipment- and infrastructure-intensive, placing them in the core of a building sometimes seems logical as they may have shorter duct and utility runs, light sensitivity and provide efficient circulation for material and waste.

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Designing and building the Lab of the Year

August 8, 2014 9:59 am | by Mike Tilbury, Vice President, JE Dunn Construction | Comments

Featuring highly advanced, energy integration technology, the Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF), located at the U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE)’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colo., stands as a symbol of progress in the complex world of energy use and production.

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Sustainable Laboratory Design and Construction: Sustainability Basics and Design

June 9, 2014 11:20 am | by Tim Studt, Editorial Director | Comments

Over the past decade, it has become readily apparent that the global environment is increasingly sensitive to human activity. The effects of global warming, increasing energy costs, dramatic climate changes and shortages of raw materials, potable water and food strain the global community.

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Sustainable Laboratory Design and Construction: LEED

June 9, 2014 11:18 am | by Tim Studt, Editorial Director | Comments

LEED is a sustainability certification rating system developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). The USGBC is a private, membership-based non-profit organization that promotes sustainability in how buildings are designed, built and operated. The USGBC partners with the Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI), offering a suite of LEED professional credentials that identify expertise in the field of green building.

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Sustainable Laboratory Design and Construction: Green Construction

June 9, 2014 11:11 am | by Tim Studt, Editorial Director | Comments

Building Information Modeling (BIM) software systems are utilized across a wide range of new construction facilities, including research labs, to coordinate the implementation of sustainable designs. BIM systems incorporate information from various sources into a single integrated database that is available to all participants in the design and construction process.

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