2023 40 Under 40: Thomas Martin, PE, CPHC, CEM, BEMP, LEED AP, 36
Senior Associate, Sustainable Design, BR+A Consulting Engineers; BS, Mechanical Engineering Technology, Wentworth Institute of Technology
Passionate about the complex challenges of climate change and global warming, Martin uses his background in engineering and building simulation to provide holistic, sustainable solutions for complex projects. In 2011, Martin shifted his time to focus more on sustainable design rather than HVAC design. Designing low-carbon, high-energy-use buildings such as laboratories and hospitals requires creative thinking and innovation. Project experience includes colleges and universities, mostly school science buildings. A project for a large hospital currently in construction includes a novel approach that will allow the facility to be 100% electric in the future. One key design element uses dedicated outdoor air systems with enthalpy wheels serving air handling units with an active cooling of dedicated exhaust air. Martin’s innovative approach goes back years. In 2014, he was the energy engineer on BR+A’s first zero net energy project, a teaching laboratory for Bristol Community College. The zero net energy building design was $200,000 lower than the projected high-performance design by focusing on load reduction strategies to reduce construction cost to pay for electrification systems such as geothermal and air-to-water heat pumps. The construction cost reduction strategy combined with a hybrid heating and cooling plant was a forward-thinking and innovative concept at that time. Martin enjoys traveling with his wife to new international destinations. Some of his favorite trips include recent visits to Paris and London and two weeks spent in Australia and New Zealand.