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Boosting occupant health through design
National Facilities Services strategy introduces new equipment, improves member experience and security, and decreases operating costs.
Settling down to ramp up
The advancements in cell and gene therapy solutions and growth of biotech have given rise to hundreds of new startup companies. Companies scaling up and occupying their first facility are hit with a daunting task: how do I go about constructing a facility?
Powering the future: optimizing facilities for lithium-ion battery research and development
The pace of Li-ion battery innovation has sparked new demands for laboratories, manufacturing, and testing.
Project Profile: Commissioning Services for Fort Meade East Campus Buildings
RMF provided Commissioning support to the East Campus Integrated Program Office (ECIPO), US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) at Fort Meade
Project Profile: RegenXBio
This RegenXBio project focused on adding on additional space to house utilities to service the building's heavy equipment.
Manufacturing and industrial building trends
Several new and retrofit manufacturing building projects show trends in speed to market and energy efficiency
Title 24 update: what does it mean for retailers?
The California Building Energy Efficiency Standards update and the impacts these changes will have on retailers.
Why specify variable-speed compression in commercial refrigeration?
Maximize energy efficiency, setpoint precision and equipment reliability with variable frequency drives and compressors
Three must-know strategies for developers in today’s Life Sciences industry
While the life sciences industry had been steadily growing, this growth exploded when the pandemic arrived—and there is no indication that this lightning-fast pace will slow down any time soon.
The Expanding Lab: Considerations when repurposing space to bolster research capabilities
With an urgent need to increase lab space all over the country, the logical question is: can we convert non-lab space into lab space?
Changes in the manufacturing, industrial building market
Several changes to the design of manufacturing and industrial buildings are covered here by the experts
Education Session: How to Design Health Care Power Systems
Emergency power supply systems in hospitals and health care facilities are key aspects of the electrical and power system. Learn how to design and specify power systems in these mission critical facilities by attending this session.
Recovering from severe winter weather: Now what?
Understand what preventative design practice can be taken to ensure facilities safety.
Building, renovating and engineering Labs: Six things developers and clients should know
Developing lab facilities is far more complicated than developing most other building types, especially when it comes to MEP engineering.
Project profile: Harlem Irving Plaza (the HIP)
A three-story renovation took place at Harlem Irving Plaza while the mall stayed open to the public.
SUNY Buffalo State College completes final phase of Science & Mathematics complex
20 years in the making—and it proves well worth the wait. The project was completed in October 2020 and includes the much-anticipated planetarium and greenhouse.
What hardened facilities can do for the continuity of critical services
Hardened facilities can continue critical services through natural disasters and man-made threats.
The Big Shift: how laboratory design should respond to personalized medicine
Crucial to the success of personalized medicine is the “big shift” away from large-scale pharmaceutical manufacturing to small-scale lab manufacturing.
Experiencing the healthy building
In the future, the value of a building will be measured by how well it supports the health of its occupants and how well it supports the health of its environment.
Seven factors for converting commercial office buildings into research labs
Empty office spaces due to the COVID-19 pandemic are making some want to turn them into research labs, which brings its own unique set of challenges.
Public safety facilities and technology needs real-time information
Emergency operations centers, 911 communications facilities, law enforcement headquarters and hospital security offices rely on accurate and real-time information.
10 things developers need to know for the next lab opportunity
The demand for lab space is growing, which can leave designers feeling flummoxed. How can they meet their clients' expectations? Consider these 10 steps.
The future of retail
Thoughtful technology integration and the creative reuse of space will be at the forefront as the retail industry evolves from COVID-19.
The impact of science and technology facility design on COVID-19 research
Science and technology facilities designed for Medicago and FUJIFILM Diosynth Biotechnologies serve as case studies for how design helps researchers combat health crises like COVID-19 and what makes them effective.
University starts lab operation for COVID-19 mitigation testing
Indiana University has started operating its own labs for COVID-19 testing and will be able to complete 35,000 tests per week.
How operational understanding leads to resilient design
Designing a resilient building requires understanding of both the built environment and operations for critical facilities
Design solutions for aging mid-century laboratories
Aging mid-century laboratories continue to be a pressing challenge for institutions across the country and building owners are at a crossroads with what to do with these buildings.
Engineering a safer dining experience for restaurants
Restaurants face a unique challenge because of COVID-19, but companies and consulting engineers can help by making the overall design safer and cleaner for workers and customers.
Advice on wet and dry labs from lab design experts
As technology and testing advance, wet labs and dry labs have become more interconnected, but these spaces still have fundamentally different purposes and design considerations.
COVID-19 test developed to deliver results in under an hour
CU Boulder researchers have developed a rapid, portable, saliva-based COVID-19 test able to return results in 45 minutes, which could be deployable in community settings like manufacturing facilities and factories.
Your questions answered: Power event analysis in mission critical facilities
Ram Kaushik from Schneider Electric replied to questions from “Power event analysis in mission critical facilities,” originally broadcast on July 23, 2020.
Lab design techniques to accelerate COVID-19 test processing
Testing is a crucial component of our global response to COVID-19 and producing enough tests processing the results quickly to the public is a challenge we currently face.
How is COVID-19 affecting retail, restaurants? Electrical, power and lighting are discussed
With consumers frequently enjoying delivered meals and shopping for goods online, brick-and-mortar restaurants and retail structures need to be more advanced in their power, electrical and lighting systems to compete
How is COVID-19 affecting retail, restaurants?
With consumers frequently enjoying delivered meals and shopping for goods online, brick-and-mortar restaurants and retail structures need to be more advanced than ever to compete
How is COVID-19 affecting retail, restaurants? Learn about energy conservation
With consumers frequently enjoying delivered meals and shopping for goods online, brick-and-mortar restaurants and retail structures need to be more advanced and energy-efficient than ever to compete
Six grocery and warehouse design trends because of COVID-19
COVID-19 is forcing grocery and warehouse companies to change their design to potentially stem the flow of the virus while keeping operations moving.
Faculty grants for COVID-19 research awarded
Rice University researchers have been awarded grants to research COVID-19's effects as well as develop technologies and protocols to mitigate its effects.
The restaurant of the future is not a restaurant
The traditional idea of the restaurant is rapidly changing as consumers' tastes and priorities change due to COVID-19.
Designing public health laboratories to safeguard researchers during pandemics
In laboratories across the globe, researchers are working around the clock to develop better testing procedures and treatments to help stop the spread of COVID-19.
Five tips for retailers offering BOPIS to consumers
Buy online pick-up in store (BOPIS) is common because of the COVID-19 pandemic. See five tips on how to make the practice easier.
Bayer Crop Science Plant Science Research and Development Facility
Renovation of this 164,300-sq-ft R&D facility combining Bayer Vegetable Seeds and Biologics
National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Space Life Sciences Lab
NASA’s Space Life Sciences Lab (SLSL) serves as a primary gateway for research payloads bound for the ISS and supports groundbreaking biological and life sciences flight and ground research
The role of building systems in warehouse design
Warehouse design is evolving and changing the way retailers are building warehouses to meet the high delivery expectations consumers have.
2019 Grocery Design Trends
Last year at FMI’s Energy and Store Development Conference, Henderson Engineers' grocery and refrigeration design team spotted five trends making a big impact on the food retail industry.
Moving from Interdisciplinary Science to Interdisciplinary Learning
By embracing a truly interdisciplinary environment, we can spur collaborative learning and research across non-traditional disciplines and departments.
Lab, research facility design
Learn tips on how to design labs and research facilities — some of the most high-tech buildings around
National Park Service: Benjamin Franklin Life & Legacy Museum
State-of-the-art systems for the father of American technology.
The University of Arizona: Biomedical Sciences Partnership Building
The University of Arizona’s Biomedical Sciences Partnership Building (BSPB) fosters collaboration among research scientists, healthcare providers, and private companies.
City of Phoenix Terminal 3 Modernization: Keeping a desert airport terminal open during renovations
This $590 million modernization project included the complete renovation of a high-traffic 1979 terminal into light-filled public space with multiple atria and new great hall, visually integrating with the Sonoran Desert site.
American Family Insurance: The Spark
American Family Insurance’s new social impact hub, the Spark, sets a prime example for corporate responsibility
The Marijuana Market: 3 Types of Facilities & Challenges
RTM Engineering Consultants is building expertise in this emerging market.
Aduro Biotech: 740 Heinz Tenant Improvement
Life sciences core/shell engineering extends to phased anchor tenant improvements.
National Institutes of Health: Porter Neuroscience Research Center Phase II
World class biomedical neuroscience research facility.
Enhancing efficiency in industrial and manufacturing facilities
From high-tech automation to energy-saving lighting and HVAC systems, there is more than meets the eye when it comes to warehouses and factories
University of Southern California: The Eli and Edythe Broad Center for Regenerative Medicine and Stem Cell Research
Architecture/Engineering integration optimized with CFD.
St. Louis Engineers Share Insights into John’s Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory on Engineering Tomorrow Podcast
Marc McManus, St. Louis office engineering leader, Alex Oliver, senior mechanical engineer, and Colin Hale, mechanical engineer/energy services, were recently featured on the podcast Engineering Tomorrow to discuss the state-of-the-art Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory.
How do you build a laboratory that combines high performance with energy efficiency?
Arup provided comprehensive strategies for Northeastern University’s new Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex (ISEC).
Wilshire Grand Tower
The Wilshire Grand tower replaces the iconic Wilshire Grand Hotel as the revitalization of LA’s downtown continues.
Dewberry project profile: Marriott Headquarters
Marriott Headquarters, Bethesda, MD
GHT Limited project profile: Madison Marquette @ The Wharf
Madison Marquette @ The Wharf, Washington, D.C.
H2M architects + engineers project profile: Fiorentino Plaza Housing Development
Fiorentino Plaza Housing Development, New York, NY
KLH Engineers PSC project profile: Two Bit Circus — Engineering Entertainment
Two Bit Circus — Engineering Entertainment, Los Angeles, CA
Focus on specialty structures
Sports arenas, historical buildings, theaters and other specialty buildings require unique engineering design
Ask an Engineering Expert: What Do You Need to Consider When Designing Senior Living Facilities?
In this installment of our Ask an Engineering Expert series, Sheetal Roy, P.E., Principal at RTM Engineering Consultants, answers the question: What do you need to consider when designing senior living facilities?
New Atlanta Braves training facility
The new complex has 11 batting cages, 63 pitching mounds and a centerpiece stadium, which has a 360-degree concourse, 6,200 seats and a capacity of 8,000!
A shared city will include seniors
Due to rapid urbanization many of the world’s seniors will now live their entire lives in urban environments.
Government facility design
Consulting engineers are working on government, state, municipal, federal, correctional and military buildings
Questioning industry norms in correctional facility design
For centuries, correctional architecture in the U.S. has followed a pattern of structure, geometry, and configuration driven in part by the belief that isolation and hard work will remedy criminal behavior.
Bill Olen: How the University of Maryland is Planning for the Future of Cutting-Edge Research
We recently sat down to discuss the exciting happenings at the university including the Cole Field House project.
Hudson Yards: A once in a lifetime development
When fully completed, more than 125,000 individuals are expected to visit the development area each day for work, shopping, dining, or to tour the iconic skylines and structures.
Designing a Mixed-use “Mobility Hub” in Downtown Buffalo
201 Ellicott is a mixed-use affordable housing and fresh food market project currently being planned for downtown Buffalo.
Retail, restaurant and mixed-use facilities
What are the trickiest aspects of retail, restaurant and mixed-use projects and what trends lie ahead? Read on for solid advice from experienced professionals.
World-class biomedical neuroscience research facility
The Porter Neuroscience Research Center co-locates researchers from nine NIH Institutes in an innovative setting, launching an initiative to increase the pace of discovery in all areas of neuroscience in a sustained effort to understand the human brain.
Three engineering trends shaping the hospitality market
When approaching projects within the hospitality industry, engineering consultants must weigh the wants and needs of many different stakeholders
Five Big Ideas from the 2019 Laboratory Design Conference
Here are the five big ideas from the conference that stood out.
Attention to detail: Employing nuanced design strategies for senior living facilities
With a rising senior population, there’s a vital need for more senior living facilities and improved senior living care capabilities.
Five design concepts for teaching laboratory success
In a teaching laboratory, each new day can feel like its own unpredictable experiment, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
Rethinking timber buildings
New uses and hybrid materials are emerging that could transform how and where we choose to build, and the sustainability and resilience of our designs.
The Scientific Method at Work: Designing Labs for Productivity
Not all labs are created equal. Why do some research facilities produce more patents?
John Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Building 201 celebrates topping out
The team from Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Building 201 recently celebrated the topping out ceremony – reaching a significant milestone in the design and construction process.
Turning old buildings into community coffee shops
Building renovation is complicated, and often times more challenging than building ground up because you have to take into account existing conditions, and prepare yourself for a lot of unknowns.
Tomorrow’s terminal: designing for the digital passenger
While airports already use digital technology to power various aspects of their operation, most have yet to create a complete digital passenger experience – and reap the benefits.
The future of retail: 5 takeaways from ICSC Centerbuild
Learn the top 5 trends to watch for when designing retail environments according to experts at Henderson Engineers.
As tall timber takes shape, acousticians set standards for sound
There are many well-chronicled upsides to building with cross-laminated timber (CLT), an innovative and fire-resistant take on the classic framing material. And if done right, it’s cheaper than conventional building.
Top 5 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Articles, January 11-17
Designing safe laboratories and research facilities; designing power systems for co-location data centers; how to design fire alarm notification systems; tips for transformer design in industrial buildings; and emergency, standby, and backup generators questions answered were Consulting-Specifying Engineer's five most clicked articles from last week, Jan. 11-17. Were you out last week? You can catch up here.
Designing safe laboratories and research facilities
Engineers working on laboratory and research projects are tasked with balancing state-of-the-art systems, budgetary concerns, occupant safety, sustainable performance, and other factors.
Building Corporate Backbone
When the owners of ING Investment Products Group decided to build a new headquarters in West Chester, Pa., cabling infrastructure was a big concern. Recognizing the fast pace of technological developments and how difficult it is to avoid rapid obsolescence, they wanted a voice and data infrastructure that gave them not only reliable performance, but also longevity.
World’s Smartest Building?
The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) College of Engineering has announced a new research center boasting a sensor driven computing platform to manage people and equipment. University officials claim that the new Thomas M. Siebel Center for Computer Science will host a number of "firsts," including the first commercial sensor-driven computing system using ultra-wideband (UWB) technology. Developed by location-based computing company Ubisense, the system will utilize UWB radar technology created by scientists in Cambridge, England.
New products literature
Magnetic-drive pumps are specifically designed to handle difficult fluids such as corrosives, pollutants, ultrapure liquids and toxics. This seamless pump can handle flows up to 1,500 gpm at 2,900 rpm and 1,760 gpm at 3,500 rpm. (Model ICM by Goulds Pumps) Circle 1 Structured cabling system doubles the bandwidth of the proposed category-6 standard, tested to perform at up to 400 MHz.
Dollars for Homeland Security
As this past Saturday marked the third anniversary of 9/11, anti-terrorism measures continue to be on the mind of the federal government. The U.S. Dept.
Speedway Club at the Texas Motor Speedway Features Latest Life Safety
The Speedway Club is a nine-story tower in a famous racing setting. It is located outside the first turn of the 1.5-mile main track at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth. Both the Speedway and The Speedway Club are recognized as among the most modern in the world, and both are busy almost every day of the year. The Speedway hosted its inaugural NASCAR Winston Cup and Busch Series races in April 1997 and its first Indy Racing League and NASCAR Craftsman Truck events that June.
Radiation Safety for HVAC Engineers and Technicians
HVAC experts should know something about radiation and it’s control for a variety of reasons. First, planning and designing effluent systems for laboratories and other industrial facilities requires some knowledge of this hazard and how it is used. Secondly, maintenance and repair of these systems will require some near contact with potentially contaminated components such as fume hoods, blowers, flow dampers and ductwork.
Designing industrial, manufacturing, and warehouse facilities: Building automation and controls
More than just places to make and store products, industrial, manufacturing, and warehouse facilities are becoming more complex. The processes and automation within these buildings are important to the building owners, and the building automation and control systems keep the occupants comfortable.
How hospitality design makes spaces (of all types) better for users
Learn how hospitality design can help organizations push new boundaries, achieve competitive differentiation, and bolster recruitment and retention.
Designing sports arenas, theaters, and other specialty structures: Automation, controls, and technology
Specialty facilities like sports stadiums and theaters have to do more than host the entertainment these days—they’re full of technological bells and whistles and high client expectations especially in regards to automation and controls.
Designing sports arenas, theaters, and other specialty structures: Sustainable buildings/energy efficiency
Specialty facilities like sports stadiums and theaters have to do more than host the entertainment these days—they’re full of technological bells and whistles and high client expectations in regards to making the building sustainable and energy efficient.
Designing sports arenas, theaters,and other specialty structures: Codes and standards
Specialty facilities like sports stadiums and theaters have to do more than host the entertainment these days—they’re full of technological bells and whistles and high client expectations while also having to comply with codes and standards.
Designing sports arenas, theaters,and other specialty structures: Fire/life safety
Specialty facilities like sports stadiums and theaters have to do more than host the entertainment these days—they’re full of technological bells and whistles and high client expectations when it comes to fire/life safety.
Designing sports arenas, theaters,and other specialty structures: Electrical, power, and lighting
Specialty facilities like sports stadiums and theaters have to do more than host the entertainment these days—they’re full of technological bells and whistles and high client expectations when it comes to electrical, power, and lighting.
The evolution of lighting systems in industrial applications
As lighting designers, it is key to stay current, to design systems using the latest technologies, and to educate industrial facility owners—all while striving to exceed the latest energy codes.
CDM Smith: Indianapolis Airport Electric Vehicle Charging
Electrical, power; vehicle charging station; and existing building retrofit
Jacobs: Department of Veteran Affairs Southeast Louisiana Veterans Healthcare System Replacement
Commissioning, retro-commissioning; survey work; government building; military facility; and new construction
McKinstry: Denver International Airport Data Center
New construction; commissioning, retro-commissioning; airport; and new construction
Common pitfalls to avoid with building a lab
Designing labs can be complicated. Here are the top seven design pitfalls to avoid when building a lab.
Exploring retail, restaurant, and mixed-use facilities
Consumers increasingly want a great experience and a good value when they’re dining out or shopping—and that desire is reflected in the demands of engineers assigned to design retail, restaurant, and mixed-use projects.
Exploring retail, restaurant, and mixed-use facilities: Automation, controls, and technology
Consumers increasingly want a great experience and a good value when they’re dining out or shopping—and that desire is reflected in the demands of engineers assigned to design automation, controls and technology in retail, restaurant, and mixed-use projects.
Exploring retail, restaurant, and mixed-use facilities: Codes and standards and electrical, power, and lighting
Consumers increasingly want a great experience and a good value when they’re dining out or shopping—and that desire is reflected in the demands of engineers assigned to design electrical, power, lighting and to comply with codes and standards in retail, restaurant, and mixed-use projects.
Exploring complex hotels, resorts, and casinos: Fire/life safety
Casinos and resorts are designed for fun and relaxation, but with such projects becoming increasingly complex and high-tech, engineers charged with tackling these structures have challenging work ahead of them in regards to fire/life safety.
Exploring complex hotels, resorts, and casinos: Sustainable buildings/energy efficiency
Casinos and resorts are designed for fun and relaxation, but with such projects becoming increasingly complex and high-tech, engineers charged with tackling these structures have challenging work ahead of them in regards to sustainable buildings and energy efficiency.
Exploring complex hotels, resorts, and casinos: Electrical/lighting/power
Casinos and resorts are designed for fun and relaxation, but with such projects becoming increasingly complex and high-tech, engineers charged with tackling these structures have challenging work ahead of them in regards to electrical/lighting/power.
Exploring complex hotels, resorts, and casinos: Codes and standards
Casinos and resorts are designed for fun and relaxation, but with such projects becoming increasingly complex and high-tech, engineers charged with tackling these structures have challenging work ahead of them in regards to complying with codes and standards.
Exploring complex hotels, resorts, and casinos: Automation and controls
Casinos and resorts are designed for fun and relaxation, but with such projects becoming increasingly complex and high-tech, engineers charged with tackling these structures have challenging work ahead of them in regards to automation and controls.
Exploring complex hotels, resorts, and casinos: HVAC
Casinos and resorts are designed for fun and relaxation, but with such projects becoming increasingly complex and high-tech, engineers charged with tackling these structures have challenging work ahead of them in regards to HVAC.
Exploring complex hotels, resorts, and casinos
Casinos and resorts are designed for fun and relaxation, but with such projects becoming increasingly complex and high-tech, engineers charged with tackling these structures have challenging work ahead of them.
2018 40 Under 40: James Dipping, PE, CPD, LEED AP BD+C, ARCSAA, AP; 39
Vice President, Environmental Systems Design Inc. (ESD), Chicago BS mechanical engineering, University of Illinois at Chicago Dipping joined ESD in 2009. Since joining the firm, his project role has grown from project engineer to project manager to technical authority, and today to a technical director and discipline leader.
2018 40 Under 40: Blythe Vogt, PE, LEED AP; 40
Managing Director, Affiliated Engineers Inc. (AEI), Denver BS and MS architectural engineering, Kansas State University, Manhattan Vogt is managing director of the AEI Denver office. She is a hands-on manager leading some of the office’s more challenging projects in higher education, research/teaching labs, and clinical applications.
2018 40 Under 40: Kirstin Weeks, LEED AP BD+C, WELL AP, GRP, CEM; 39
Associate, Arup, San Francisco BA environmental studies, Dartmouth CollegeMS building science, University of California, Berkeley Weeks is an associate with a specialty in energy and building ecology in Arup’s San Francisco office. Her projects span from individual buildings to master plans and research, and her clients include many of the world’s most prominent tech companies and retailers, as well as some of the most progressive developers, cities, and universities. In addition to projects with impacts on a grand scale, she delights in community projects, such as EPACenter Arts, where her water strategy is currently helping ensure the viability of a much-needed youth art center in an economically disadvantaged community.
Three ways to build AEC firm value
In order to increase the value of architecture, engineering, and consulting (AEC) firms need to make actionable management decisions, focus on gross profit, and reduce the average collection period (ACP).
The science behind laboratory and research facility projects
Engineers need to consider many factors for a lab or research facility so it can perform as needed. Engineers with experience on such facilities offer advice on how to pass the test.
How to design medical buildings: Electrical, lighting, and power
Hospitals and health care buildings have become very sophisticated. Coordination among all parties, special attention to codes and standards, and a focus on patient comfort have each become highly important to engineers. Electrical and power system design are highly sophisticated.
2017 Lighting and Lighting Control Study
Lighting in research facilities, laboratories.
Project Profile: Large-scale resort designed and consructed
M Resort is a full-service hotel, casino, and spa just south of Las Vegas Boulevard.
Project Profile: Ultra-modern CityCenter tower
Aria Tower sits on 68-acres and serves as a centerpiece of the city’s downtown development
Tips to design multifamily and mixed-use buildings: Controls and automation
Multifamily dwellings and mixed-use buildings are becoming more prevalent. Some best practices and tips are offered for engineering building automation systems and controls in these residential buildings.
Tips to design multifamily and mixed-use buildings
Multifamily dwellings and mixed-use buildings are becoming more prevalent. Some best practices and tips are offered for engineering systems in these residential buildings.
Tips to design multifamily and mixed-use buildings: Electrical, lighting
Multifamily dwellings and mixed-use buildings are becoming more prevalent. Some best practices and tips are offered for engineering electrical, power, and lighting systems in these residential buildings.
Sustainability, luxury: Sharing a common goal
Luxury is being redefined by projects like The Allison Inn & Spa and Sokol Blosser to encompass sustainability and minimal negative environmental impacts.
Architects create resiliency every day without even realizing it by accounting for future disasters big or small in all of their designs.
Your facility is mission critical: Resiliency, electrical commissioning
Efficient electrical design directly contributes to resiliency and sustainability. Without it, the consequences can be expensive or unsafe. Extra care and oversight at the start of a project is important to prevent future problems.
Check into hotel, motel, resort high-tech designs
Hotels, motels, and resorts accommodate thousands of people. Here, engineers explain just how challenging it is to deliver unique design concepts and ensure these structures are in compliance.
Check into hotel, motel, resort high-tech designs: electrical/lighting/power and fire/life safety
Hotels, motels, and resorts accommodate thousands of people. Here, engineers explain just how challenging it is to deliver unique design concepts and ensure these structures are in compliance specifically in regards to electrical/lighting/power and fire/life safety.
Weekly merger, acquisition, deal update: February 3
This week Morrissey Goodale reported five deals in the United States and four international deals involving companies from the U.S., Australia, and France.
Five steps to success with ASHRAE 90.1
ASHRAE Standard 90.1: Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings is one of the main drivers used in any building design. Read the top five best practices for engineers to understand the key elements of this standard.
Top 5 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Articles, January 16-January 22: the whole-system approach, NFPA 110-2016, batteries in mission critical facilities, more
Articles about the whole-system approach in design/construction, applying NFPA 110-2016, batteries in mission critical facilities, choosing a modular data center, and fire door inspections were Consulting-Specifying Engineer's five most clicked articles from last week, January 16-January 22. Were you out last week? You can catch up here.
Top 5 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Articles, January 9-January 15: NFPA 110-2016, test batteries in mission critical facilities, electrical system replacement, more
Articles about NFPA 110-2016, test batteries in mission critical facilities, electrical system replacement, NFPA 70E compliance, and designing government facilities were Consulting-Specifying Engineer's five most clicked articles from last week, January 9-January 15. Were you out last week? You can catch up here.
LED retrofit kits
The LED retrofit kit connectability enhancements allow installers to electrically link more from one power source.
Anti-bacterial line of plugs and connectors
SteriGuard plugs and connectors feature anti-bacterial line of plugs, connectors, and cord sets.
Research note: Latin American fire equipment market offers growing opportunities in automotive, hospitality, and transportation industries.
Many manufacturers are moving their production facilities out of the United States and across the border to Mexico and other Latin American countries, to take advantage of the lower cost of labor and an improving logistics network.
Top 5 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Articles, July 18-24: NFPA 99, medium-voltage electrical systems, 40 Under 40, more
Articles about NFPA 99, medium-voltage electrical systems, 40 Under 40, putting COPS into context, and designing generator fuel systems are Consulting-Specifying Engineer's five most clicked articles from last week, July 18-24. Were you out last week? Miss something? You can catch up here.
Top 5 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Articles, July 11-17: 40 Under 40, combined heat and power systems, backup power systems, more
Articles about 40 Under 40, combined heat and power systems, backup power systems, NFPA 99, and noise and vibration control in building design are Consulting-Specifying Engineer's five most clicked articles from last week, July 11-17. Were you out last week? Miss something? You can catch up here.
Programmable heating with digital wall heater
Programmable heating with the Artisan SmartSeries Architectural Digital Wall Heater automatically adjusts wattage output and blower speed resulting in energy efficiencies.
Top 5 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Articles, July 4-10: 40 Under 40, noise and vibration control, combined heat and power systems, more
Articles about 40 Under 40, noise and vibration control, combined heat and power systems, NFPA 99, and regulation of commercial, industrial fan efficiency are Consulting-Specifying Engineer's five most clicked articles from last week, July 4-10. Were you out last week? Miss something? You can catch up here.
Rising demand for food and refrigeration systems in retail outlets, hotels, restaurants, and hospitality drives commercial refrigeration equipment market growth
The rising consumer base in developing economies, rise in disposable incomes, rapidly changing food-consumption trends, and growing demand for food and refrigeration systems in retail stores, hotels, and restaurants is fuelling the growth of the global industry.
Top 5 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Articles, June 27 to July 3: NFPA 99, 40 Under 40, fire protection for IDF and MDF rooms, more
Articles about NFPA 99, 40 Under 40, fire protection for IDF, MDF rooms, noise and vibration control in building design, and stand-alone health care buildings are Consulting-Specifying Engineer's five most clicked articles from last week, June 27 to July 3. Were you out last week? Miss something? You can catch up here.
Adaptive reuse: Much more than historic preservation
Repurposing old buildings for retail, restaurants, and housing is more than cost-effective. In many cases, it’s helping revitalize blighted neighborhoods and communities.
Top 5 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Articles, June 20-26: 40 Under 40, Product of the Year, inverter duty, more
Articles about 40 Under 40, 2016 Product of the Year finalists, inverter duty, HVAC: cooling systems, and medium-voltage electrical systems are Consulting-Specifying Engineer's five most clicked articles from last week, June 20-26. Were you out last week? Miss something? You can catch up here.
Top 5 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Articles, June 13-19: Smoke control, Product of the Year, 40 Under 40, more
Articles about Smoke control, 2016 Product of the Year finalists, 40 Under 40, medium-voltage electrical systems, and applying 90.1 in lighting design are Consulting-Specifying Engineer's five most clicked articles from last week, June 13-19. Were you out last week? Miss something? You can catch up here.
Top 5 Consulting-Specifying Engineer Articles, June 6-12: Health care buildings, Product of the Year, smoke control design, more
Articles about stand-alone health care buildings, 2016 Product of the Year finalists, smoke control design, lighting for retail or restaurants, and applying 90.1 in lighting design are Consulting-Specifying Engineer's five most clicked articles from last week, June 6-12. Were you out last week? Miss something? You can catch up here.
Plume abatement technology
ClearSky plume abatement technology provides cooling tower efficiency, conserves water, and reduces unwanted water vapor plumes when integrated with Marley field-erected counterflow cooling towers.
Constant voltage LED driver
Hi-lume Premier 0.1% constant voltage driver is an LED driver with smooth, flicker-free 0.1% dimming and Soft-on, Fade-to-Black dimming.
Let there be light—but what kind?
When you’re trying to decide about the lighting for your retail or restaurant chain, there’s only one thing you should never do: blindly follow the conventional wisdom.
2016 40 Under 40: Jeff Yirak, PE, CPMP, LEED AP BD+C, O+M, 37
Associate Principal, Commissioning; Wood Harbinger, Bellevue, Wash. BS Mechanical Engineering, University of Washington
Inverter scroll compressor
VZH inverter scroll compressor is the second generation of scroll compressors offering variable-speed technology for commercial air conditioning applications.
Surface LED downlight
The Halo SLD Surface LED Downlight Collection has expanded to include the SLD 6-in.
Arup Thoughts: Making sound decisions
Projects are normally required to do an environmental impact assessment (EIA) at an early stage. Noise will often form part of that EIA and is usually described in technical language that only a handful of specialists can easily understand.
Specification-grade LED fixtures
Specification-grade LED fixtures that can be used in the residential, commercial, and retail/hospitality sectors.
PBA promotes Allen, Mrak, and Peck to senior associate
Peter Basso Associates (PBA) is pleased to announce three promotions.
Getting it right in mixed-use buildings: Electrical, power, and lighting
Mixed-use buildings—often a combination of retail and residential—are unique structures with varying needs. Electrical systems, power supplies, and lighting systems are a big part of the puzzle.
Getting it right in mixed-use buildings: Fire and life safety
Mixed-use buildings—often a combination of retail and residential—are unique structures with varying needs. Fire and life systems should be considered for all tenants.
Hospital-grade power-indicating receptacles
Legrand's hospital-grade power-indicating receptacles are suitable for healthcare locations and feature a green dual LED with power indication at all times.
JENSEN HUGHES: Venetian Macau
System overhaul of a resort
Restaurant fire-suppression systems
The increased nozzle heights for ANSUL PIRANHA restaurant fire-suppression systems feature a UL-300-certified design.
2015 40 Under 40: Andy Luong, PE, 33
Project Manager, Finnegan Erickson Associates Consulting Engineers, Las Vegas BS Electrical Engineering, University of Nevada
Soft-on and fade-to-black LED fixtures
Lutron brings smooth and flicker-free dimming with soft-on and fade-to-black to LED fixtures with EcoSystem H-Series LED drivers.
Sealed unit line for commercial refrigeration
Embraco's Plug n' Cool (EPC) sealed unit line is a complete cooling solution designed for refrigeration compressor replacements or retrofits that uses R-290 refrigerant and is designed for commercial use.
LED downlight for commercial applications
The LRD3 is a Retrofit Downlight Luminaire (LRD) and is designed for recessed lighting upgrades in large auditoriums, malls, airports, and other public areas that feature high ceilings.
Advanced manufacturing lab models future production lines
GE Industrial Solutions has opened an advanced manufacturing lab to facilitate collaboration that will help develop manufacturing methods for its future circuit breaker production line.
Preparing our companies for the future
While history does occasionally repeat itself, the next wave of engineering firms will set itself apart by staying on the leading edge. Share your ideas and future outlook with the Consulting-Specifying Engineer audience.
Teaching the teachers: engineers lead academic panel at NYSETA
Mechanical and electrical engineers, Lauren Blas and Robert Garra, will present during the New York State Engineering Technology Association (NYSETA) conference on Thursday, October 16.
CannonDesign selected for Niagara Falls redevelopment project
CannonDesign, along with Uniland Development and Delaware North Companies, was selected to redevelop the vacant portion of the Rainbow Centre Mall in Niagara Falls, NY.
Fire alarm system
The Fire-Lite Connect unifies multiple fire alarm systems over fiber optic cable to reduce monitoring costs while improving reporting details.
Best practices for mixed-use buildings: Automation and controls
Taking on a mixed-use structure—such as one that includes retail and residential portions—can be an engineering challenge. With all the different engineered systems involved, it can be like working on and integrating several different projects at once. Building automation systems (BAS) and controls must be carefully integrated.
Best practices for mixed-use buildings: Fire and life safety
Taking on a mixed-use structure—such as one that includes retail and residential portions—can be an engineering challenge. With all the different engineered systems involved, it can be like working on and integrating several different projects at once. Fire and life safety systems must be carefully considered.
LED lamp for outdoor signage
The 2.5 W Wet-Listed Marquee LED lamp is designed to replace inefficient incandescent and cold-cathode fluorescent (CCFL) lamps for outdoor signage applications at hotels, casinos, restaurants, resorts, and amusement parks.
Lizardos Engineering Assocs. PC: MEP Infrastructure Modernization for Four 44-Story Apartment Buildings in New York City
System overhaul at an engineered multi-dwelling/retail complex/restaurant.
LED modules and recessed lights
The P-Series of LED modules and recessed lights are Energy Star rated and designed for light commercial applications.
Pedestrian walkway gets lighting upgrade
A pedestrian area uses primarily LEDs to light the way between two Chicago buildings.
Car dealership illuminates lighting design
This car dealership’s lighting design improves the buying experience for the customer.
2014 40 Under 40: Umit Sirt, PE, CEM, 39
Senior Energy Engineer, Principal, Taitem Engineering pc, Ithaca, N.Y.
Arup Thoughts: Let’s design our acoustic world
Design briefs hardly ever include a description of the acoustic experience that should be achieved. Yet acoustics are a vital and defining characteristic that shapes the quality and character of environments and our responses to them.
The costs and risks of damper-based controls in kitchen ventilation
Engineers must think in terms of total safety and optimal energy efficiency when designing kitchen ventilation systems of the future.
Lodging, office buildings lead commercial building sector
Reed Construction Data’s U.S. chief economist Bernard Markstein answers one-on-one questions about the commercial building construction forecast.
Regional specific technology to increase the adoption of Safe Cities
FirstNet is expected to increase collaboration between emergency responders, a new report from the IHS Security and Fire division has found.
Jerry Bauers joins advisory board
Jerry Bauers has joined the Consulting-Specifying Engineer editorial advisory board.
November 1 Southland Industries update: Roughing-in Levels 2 and 5; temporary air conditioning; parking garages
Roughing-in systems on Levels 2 and 5; North and West Clinics being prepared for temporary air conditioning; CUP stream plant being finalized; three parking garages underway.
September 30 Southland Industries update: Mechanical room equipment, cooling towers passivated, chilled water system insulation
Roughing in systems on Levels 1 to 4, connecting equipment in main mechanical rooms, North and West clinics near completion, cooling towers being passivated, chilled water system getting insulation.
Incorporate lighting controls with BAS to save energy
Incorporating daylighting and lighting controls with a building automation system can result in energy savings.
Building automation, controls in mixed-use buildings
Engineering mixed-use buildings is a fine art—specifiers must combine multiple engineered systems for several business and residence types into one structure. Building automation and controls can be complex, and system integration is key.
September 3 Southland Industries update: Rough testing began, major equipment placed, condenser water system flushed
Rough testing has begun in hospital basement, Level 1; all major equipment has been set in place; the condenser water system is being flushed and passivated in the CUP.
John W. Olver Transit Center
New Construction; John W. Olver Transit Center; Arup
Qatar Airways Catering Facility, Hamad International Airport
New construction; Qatar Airways Catering Facility, Hamad International Airport; Ghafari Associates
Jekyll Island Convention Center
New construction; Jekyll Island Convention Center; TLC Engineering for Architecture Inc.
Integrated kitchen ventilation system
Greenheck’s Vari-Flow integrated kitchen ventilation systems reduce energy costs by modulating exhaust and supply airflows to match cooking operation demands and have temperature sensors that are exposed to quick changes in cooking activity.
July 29 Southland Industries update: Level 3 air handling units set, condenser water system testing
Hospital Level 3 air handling units have been set; Condenser water system in the CUP is being tested; Rough in testing begun in the west clinic.
NZEB examples to inspire
These three facilities are current examples of net-zero energy buildings (NZEB).
Commercial, retail buildings to be the fastest adopters of remote monitoring services
Commercial and retail end-users will drive the growth of remote monitoring services in intelligent buildings, accounting for more than 80% of the $400 million market in 2016.
July 8 Southland Industries update: rough in, testing of plumbing systems completed
Continuing rough in on interstitial levels of North and West clinics; completed rough in and testing of plumbing systems; CUP steam boilers arrived, being installed.
Special report: How to leverage IBC and ICC
The 2012 International Building Code from the International Code Council provides details to help safeguard the public health, safety, and general welfare in the built environment.
June 3 Southland Industries update: mechanical room open
Currently roughing in on interstitial levels of the North and West clinics; the Level 3 mechanical room has opened up; trade installations have begun.
May 1 Southland Industries update: CUP nearly complete
The central utility plant is currently 80% complete; the project team recently hung four Armstrong vertical inline 1,900 gpm chilled water pumps; the boiler flue gas economizers have been hung.
Sports, entertainment venues: Automation and controls
Sports arenas and entertainment facilities involve complex engineering solutions. Five consulting engineers offer advice on building automation and controls.
BIM and fire protection engineering
By including all life safety systems in the BIM rendering, engineers improve the building’s model as a whole.
Integration case study: Small retail store
A remodel of a retail building was simulated using an energy modeling program to determine the impact on the HVAC cooling loads.
Energy codes and lighting design
Engineers have many resources when designing energy-efficient lighting in nonresidential buildings. Lighting designers do not have to sacrifice quality or reduce lighting levels just to meet energy codes.
Reliability considerations in simple paralleling applications
When a decision is made to use paralleled generator sets, many considerations need to be addressed to ensure a reliable system.
Tips to maximize boiler efficiency
Eight keys to maximizing the efficiency of steam boiler systems.
Boilers: Types, applications, and efficiencies
Engineers should understand which boiler is appropriate for the application, and then know how to maximize its use.
Are wireless fire alarms right for your project?
Fire protection engineers should explore the costs, benefits, history, technology, and code compliance aspects of low-power radio wireless fire alarm systems and wireless smoke alarms.
What good are enclosed elevator lobbies?
Can performance criteria be written in understandable and enforceable language to be integrated into building and fire codes?
ESD names senior vice president
Addam Friedl was named senior vice president and mission critical facilities practice leader at Environmental Systems Design.
How to engineer systems in mixed-use buildings: HVAC and controls
When working on mixed-use buildings, engineers must address many needs in one building. This reviews aspects of HVAC, automation and controls, and energy efficiency.
How to engineer systems in mixed-use buildings: Electrical and power systems
When working on mixed-use buildings, engineers must address many needs in one building. Electrical and power engineering are key aspects of these buildings.
An overview: How to engineer systems in mixed-use buildings
When working on mixed-use buildings, engineers must address many needs in one building.
Atkins launches retro-commissioning group
Atkins has launched its retro-commissioning service, based out of Ft. Myers, Fla. The day-to-day operations will be run by Dave McFarlane.
Survival in the great indoors
When it comes to fire and life safety, large venues require big thinking.
Scheduling for commissioning, MCAA change order overview
Discussions on scheduling for commissioning provide attendees with the opportunity to efficiently schedule testing and balancing sequences and tie them to the contract.
Music City Center
New construction: Music City Center; I. C. Thomasson Associates Inc.
Potomac Yards Renaissance, Residence Inn Hotel
New construction: Potomac Yards Renaissance and Residence Inn Hotel; Jordan and Skala Engineers
University of Texas Tower Air Handling Unit Replacement
System overhaul: University of Texas Tower Air Handling Unit Replacement; EEA Consulting Engineers
New construction: Agora Mall; Triad Consulting
Flats East, LLC Mixed Use Development
New construction: Flats East, LLC Mixed Use Development; Thorson Baker and Associates Inc.
Natural History Museum of Utah at Rio Tinto Center, University of Utah
New construction: Natural History Museum of Utah at Rio Tinto Center, University of Utah; Spectrum Engineers
With more and more owners becoming familiar with and utilizing commissioning and retro-commissioning for the repurposing of existing facilities, they are becoming aware of ongoing commissioning (OCx) in order to maintain and sustain their facilities at the highest levels.
Pollution control unit
The Grease Grabber Triple Play is offered by Greenheck.
2012 40 Under 40: Jarrod Alston, PE, 34
Fire Protection Engineer, Arup, Boston
2012 40 Under 40: Alban Bassuet, 37
Associate, Arup, New York
2012 40 Under 40: Mark Blackburn, PE, CFPS, 31
Senior Fire Protection Engineer, Hughes Assocs. Inc., Warwick, R.I.
2012 40 Under 40: Kevin D. Cahill, PE, CPD, LEED AP, 39
Director of Engineering, PositivEnergy Practice, Chicago
2012 40 Under 40: A. Christopher Cerino, PE, 39
Senior Associate and Structural Discipline Leader, STV, New York
2012 40 Under 40: Clark R. Denson, PE, CEM, LEED AP BD+C, BEMP, 33
Mechanical Engineer, SSRCx, Nashville
2012 40 Under 40: Michael Eardley, PE, LEED AP, CCP, CBCP, 36
Associate Vice President, Cannon Design, Boston
2012 40 Under 40: Kelly Eisenstein, PE, 33
Senior Fire Protection Engineer, City of San Diego
2012 40 Under 40: Josh R. Greenfield, PE, LEED AP, BEMP, 32
Associate Vice President, Energy Services Manager, Primera, Chicago
2012 40 Under 40: Lee Harrelson, PE, LEED AP, 31
Owner, Principal, Senior Mechanical Engineer, TM/R Engineering, Arlington, Va.
2012 40 Under 40: Andrew Heitman, CxA, CEM, LEED AP BD+C, CEA, CBCP, 36
Founder, Building Energy Sciences LLC, Pensacola, Fla.
2012 40 Under 40: Pete Jefferson, PE, LEED AP, HBDP, 33
Principal, Mechanical Engineer, M.E. GROUP, Denver
2012 40 Under 40: Julianne F. Laue, PE, LEED AP BD+C, BEMP, 39
Senior Associate, Sustainability Specialist, DLR Group, Minneapolis
2012 40 Under 40: Frank Muscarella, PE, LEED AP, 39
Senior Vice President, WSP Flack + Kurtz, New York
2012 40 Under 40: Michael Pires, PE, LEED AP BD+C, 37
Project Principal, Green Buildings, Enermodal Engineering, Toronto
2012 40 Under 40: Scott Twele, PE, 32
Operations Manager, Rolf Jensen & Associates, San Diego
2012 40 Under 40: Frances Yang, PE, LEED AP, 34
Senior Engineer, Arup, San Francisco
CxA January 2012 Workshop in Chicago
The ACG workshop is scheduled for Jan. 24, 2012, at McCormick Place in Chicago.
Kitchen pollution control unit
Greenheck has introduced the Grease Grabber Triple Play and Power Play pollution control units.
Shopping malls, retail store design
Shopping malls, retail stores, and strip malls pose many challenges to fire protection, lighting, mechanical, and electrical engineers.
ACG CxA workshop and exam
The AABC Commissioning Group CxA Workshop and Exam is scheduled for Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2012, at McCormick Place in Chicago.
Quick connect tap box generators restores power after outage
In extreme situations, tap boxes can be used as a cost-effective, efficient solution to restore power to buildings and businesses without sacrificing security or anything that might hamper operations.
Empire State Building achieves LEED Gold
Empire State Building Co., Jones Lang LaSalle, and U.S. Green Building Council announce milestone achievement.
Benchmarking: Understanding building performance
Conducting an energy performance comparison, known as benchmarking, can boost energy efficiency and lower building operating costs.
Oakland County airport first to be LEED-certified
Michigan's Oakland County airport is the first LEED-certified aviation airport terminal in the United States.
DOE establishes standard for federal, commercial buildings
The U.S. Dept. of Energy has established ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007 as the national reference standard for federal, commercial buildings.
TLC gains senior electrical engineer
Mark Murphy rejoins TLC Engineering for Architecture as senior electrical engineer.
HEA hires building enclosure engineer
Horizon Engineering Assocs. launches Building Enclosure Commissioning Group with the hire of Amy Gelsone.
California data center achieves Green Globes certification
The Internap Network Servides data center has achieved Green Globes certification, which is the first of its kind for a public data center in the United States.
PV reflectivity safe for airports
Glare analysis performed via simulated environment for proposed PV array near airport.
Office design: raising the standard
Office buildings present a range of challenges as diverse as the tenants that occupy the structures. To succeed, engineers need to stay on top of owners’ needs, environmental concerns, sustainability, and a range of other issues.
USGBC launches LEED O+M
The U.S. Green Building Council's LEED O+M process delivers green building guidelines for existing facilities.
Dewberry’s Joarder becomes department manager
Dewberry announces its new department manager for MEP services in its New York City office.
PI Solutions management changes
Primary Integration Solutions announces expansion of the executive team.
Keeping genset fuel flowing during disasters
Developing a strategy to ensure the availability of fuel for your generator system is a key element of disaster planning.
ETC Building and Design grows
California-based AEC firm specializing in healthcare, biotech, and seismic retrofits hires five seasoned architects and construction experts to support its accelerating growth.
CxA workshop, commissioning training
ACG has announced six new opportunities to prepare for the Certified Commissioning Authority (CxA) exam.
Airport gets a plant upgrade
Graef was commissioned in 1999 to design a new parking structure for General Mitchell International Airport in Milwaukee, but found the best location was on top of the existing chilled water and hot water power plant.
Choosing a chilled water cooling system
There are a variety of cooling systems that will meet the cooling requirements of a facility.
2011 40 Under 40: Jon Evans, PE, LEED AP, 31
Senior Project Engineer, Sustainable Engineering Group LLC, Madison, Wis.
2011 40 Under 40: John Peterson, PE, LEED AP, 36
Senior Project Engineer, Hewlett Packard, Herndon, Va.
Clean agent fire suppression systems
The next edition of NFPA 2001, Standard on Clean Agent Fire Extinguishing Systems, will be published later in 2011. Updates will capture advancements in technologies and the latest thinking on the subject.
ESD promotes VPs
Environmental Systems Design promoted Mike Kuppinger and Mehdi Jalayrian to new posts.
InfoWorld names Green 15 IT stars of 2011
This year's awards show that third-party green products/services have made their mark on sustainable information technology practices.
Have bacon, will engineer
Bill Ammons, PE, LEED AP, has been involved in base building system retrofits, the design of cleanrooms, and believes bacon is the one food he could not live without.
RMF Engineering launches A/V-Telecomm Group
Paul Bruckman will head the group’s operations with the support of nine electrical staff.
Commercial lease language provides energy efficiency incentives
NYC takes the lead in creating groundbreaking language that allows owners and tenants to share the costs and benefits of energy upgrades.
Congress repeals paperwork requirement for small businesses
AIA applauds the repeal of the provision that required small businesses to file paperwork every time they spent more than $600 with a single vendor.
Engineering firm Buro Happold wins big at ACEC New York awards
ACEC New York recognizes achievements of consulting engineering industry with annual awards.
California group pushes for more green investment
The same group that fought to save California’s landmark global warming law last year has $1 million left to fund more clean energy efforts.
Seismic design tips for MEP engineers
In the aftermath of the earthquake in Japan, U.S. engineers need to refresh their knowledge on designing MEP systems in earthquake-prone areas.
Federal program to award $12M for clean energy innovation
The i6 Green Challenge will fund six teams to move new green technologies from the lab to the marketplace.
Centering on data
With the need to balance a number of complex, changing demands (such as scalability, sustainability, and shifts in codes), data center projects are among the most complex an engineer can face. Here, top experts in the data center field offer advice on getting projects to compute.
$4.7B savings for energy efficiency projects
Johnson Controls guaranteed that its more than 1,000 public-sector projects will save money on energy, water, and operational costs over the next 10 years.
Wealthy Americans invest in commercial property
High-net-worth individuals invested $2.1 billion in commercial real estate last year, more than three times as much as 2009.
Seismic codes for nonstructural engineering
Mechanical, electrical, and plumbing components are not always taken into account when the thought of earthquakes comes up, but proper attachment to the structure can be just as important as proper attachment of a beam or column.
U.S. construction spending falls on slump in commercial projects
Nonresidential construction dropped 6.9% in January, partly due to winter storms, tight credit and high vacancy rates.
LEED Volume Program celebrates 500th certified pilot project
The U.S. Green Building Council's LEED Volume Program enables large-scale organizational builders and operators to deliver a consistent end product, earning LEED certification faster and at a low cost.
Siemens eyeing $2.7 B in cost savings from ‘clean’ technology use
Siemens Economist Intelligence Unit site Asian Green City Index helps project potential cost savings from clean technology deployments, various projects
WSP Flack + Kurtz names managing director
Christian Agulles, PE, LEED AP has been selected as the Managing Director of WSP Flack + Kurtz’s Washington, D.C., office
President Obama’s Plan to win the future: Better Building Initiative
President Obama focuses on making American business more energy efficient through ‘Better Building Initiative’, features tax incentives, more financing for retrofits, and innovative clean energy technologies.
U.S. commercial property recovery spares economy
Commercial properties in 2010 sold for 20% more than they did a year prior - the second-largest gain on record, defying predictions of further economic collapse. Prices of commercial properties sold by institutional investors surged 19 percent in 2010, the second-biggest gain on record, according to an index developed by the MIT Center for Real Estate.
KlingStubbins selects new associates, senior associates
KlingStubbins promotes four new associates, two senior associates.
U.S. Green Building Council welcomes new board directors
20-member board responsible for articulating and upholding the vision, values, mission of organization
A passport to international engineering
Some engineering firms are moving beyond North America, and expanding their engineering offerings to other countries.
Mike Walters welcomed to advisory board
Consulting-Specifying Engineer has added Mike Walters, PE, LEED AP, to its editorial advisory board.
Secretary Chu and seven other Agencies launch Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Export Initiative
U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu joined seven other U.S. Government agencies in launching the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Export Initiative, a coordinated effort to promote renewable energy and energy efficiency exports. In partnership with the Dept. of Commerce, the Dept. of Energy co-chairs the Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee Working Group of the federal agencies participating in the Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Export Initiative.
Leading Business and Environmental Groups Urge Action on Buildings and Cities at U.N. Climate Summit
During the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change conference, 40 environmental and business organizations joined forces to urge governments to prioritize reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the built environment and increase investment in this sector.
Secretary Chu to Participate in New Millenium Nuclear Summit
On December 7th, U.S. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu will participate in the New Millenium Nuclear Summit along with White House Advisor Carol Browner, Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Chairman Greg Jaczko.
Passage of Diesel Emission Reduction Act applauded
More than 500 environmental, health, industry and government organization endorse re-authorization of the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA).
Fuel flow equals data flow
Designing a standby power system for a data-intensive application requires not only the right generator for the load requirements but also the most reliable fuel available.
How to select a VFD
These guidelines dispel the confusion about matching variable frequency drives (VFD) and motors to fans and pumps that are typically encountered in commercial building applications. While the motivation to increase energy efficiency could be financial (reduced energy costs) or ethical (reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with power production), it is taken for granted that VFDs are an easy way to improve energy efficiency in a motor application. And with these noble intentions in mind, the engineer will specify a VFD for his client. Oftentimes, that isn't the end of the story for the engineer.
Lights! Camera! Banjo!
Meet Mark Bauserman, Executive Director Engineering, Paramount Pictures Corp. Bauserman is a brilliant lighting engineer, a fascinating story teller, and a superior facility planner who knows exactly what he wants from buildings, systems, equipment, and personnel.
Supercomputer Title no longer owned by U.S. thanks to China
A Chinese scientific research center has built the fastest supercomputer ever made, replacing the United States as maker of the swiftest machine, and giving China bragging rights as a technology superpower. According to an article written by Ashley Vance in the New York Times, the computer, known as Tianhe-1A, has 1.4 times the horsepower of the current top computer, which is at a national laboratory in Tennessee, as measured by the standard test used to gauge how well the systems handle mathematical calculations, said Jack Dongarra, a University of Tennessee computer scientist who maintains the official supercomputer rankings. Modern supercomputers are built by combining thousands of small computer servers and using software to turn them into a single entity. In that sense, any organization with enough money and expertise can buy what amount to off-the-shelf components and create a fast machine. The Chinese system follows that model by linking thousands upon thousands of chips made by the American companies Intel and Nvidia. But the secret sauce behind the system — and the technological achievement — is the interconnect, or networking technology, developed by Chinese researchers that shuttles data back and forth across the smaller computers at breakneck rates, Mr.
View from the top
The 2010 MEP Giants provide insight on the state of the engineering industry and what to look for in 2011.
Healing today’s hospitals
Building analysis, energy efficiency, and flexibility are the keys to successful hospital design. This challenge has led administrators to demand more of their healthcare facilities in the way of flexibility, energy efficiency, and codes and standards compliance.
Transformers – 2010-09-19
Schneider Electric Introduces Premium 30 Energy Efficient Transformers with NEMA Approval.
Higher education, higher protection
In response to the shooting incident at Virginia Tech in 2007 and other similar events, the call for providing better forms of emergency communications on a university campus is growing at a rapid pace.
Tier 4i Emissions
Experts answer questions about EPA Tier 4i emissions regulations and generator operating procedures.
The death of HVAC
The death of HVAC can lead to the rise of thermal environmental engineering. Here are some thoughts on the effectiveness, efficiency, and installation and operating costs of modern air conditioning systems
2010 40 Under 40 winners
Consulting-Specifying Engineer announces the winners of its third annual 40 Under 40 awards program.
Part 1: Basics of sustainable lighting
Within the newly established field of sustainable lighting design, lighting professionals are working with other building professionals to define a fundamentally different way to practice. Design team processes are more integrated than ever as the lines between the responsibilities of different disciplines blur.
CSE: Whose responsibility is it to ensure that equipment such as control panels, lighting panels, or panelboards are properly labeled? Designer, contractor, or the building owner/operator? Lanny Floyd: NEC110.16 is specific that the equipment is “field marked” as opposed to the label being applied by the manufacturer.
Take care of the money sensors
In 1997, I was working on a 17,000-ton central plant that served an industrial facility for the development of chip fabrication prototypes. The plant ran 24/7 and was never shut down—even for maintenance. We were working on a project to replace two of the chillers and optimize the control sequences.
Earning LEED 2009 Water Efficiency credits
Meeting LEED's Water Efficiency Credit 3-Water Use Reduction is no longer a sure thing, even for commercial office buildings.
Industrial-size fire protection
Fire protection engineers must become familiar with the idiosyncrasies of industrial fire safety design.
Tiers of a generator: Emissions regulations for diesel gensets
Manufacturers face the next phase of EPA emissions limits for diesel engines and gensets.
Beyond Green awards recognize high-performance buildings
The program demonstrates the successful application of the whole building approach.
Climate scientists hope independent reviews will reverse public’s loss of trust
An opinion poll this month found the number of people believing climate change is an established fact has fallen from 41% in November to 26%.
Unlocking the code
This article will analyze the NEC for wired systmes, and examine related International Building Code (IBC), NFPA, and standards that may influence the design. The areas of interest will primarily concern the specialty wired systems of data, telephone, and fiber optics that rely on limited amounts of the general code requirements.
A study in green science
St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minn., is one of the few educational institutions to receive a U.S. Green Building Council LEED Platinum rating for one of its buildings.
Cost-effective boiler system retrofits
Retrofits that directly reduce operating costs are readily available, in most cases with well-documented savings and quick paybacks.
Report: BAS market poised for change
According to a report, the BAS market will change, based on an increased focus on energy efficiency.
IEEE launches Smart Grid Web Portal
IEEE's new content-rich web gateway provides intelligence, education, and news on the global Smart Grid network.
Green-lighting energy efficiency
At the intersection of energy codes, technology developments, cost constraints, and demands for higher efficiency and lower emissions, how should designers proceed?
Middle East fire and life safety
When working in the Middle East, fire and life safety engineers must learn the intricacies of their building and of the local codes.
For 2010, it’s the economy, energy, and the environment
In July 2009, I wrote that building performance data is golden said that, consequently, there would be a greater call for retrocommissioning and ongoing commissioning services, a greater call for dashboard software for reporting status and trends to owners and occupants, and a continued shift in consulting engineering services toward improving the performance of existing buildings. Since then, enough has happened that I’m escalating my assessment that building performance data will be platinum in 2010. The new construction market continues to muddle through economic concerns such as high unemployment and tight financing restrictions.
How to start a retrocommissioning business
In a recessive construction market and in increasingly regulated and incentivized energy and environmental markets, retrocommissioning services represent a new business opportunity for engineering firms.
Green design: Risk or reward?
Engineers should wonder about the risks of helping their clients go green—and how to manage these risks.
First integrated green construction code poised for debut
Drafters of the International Code Council's International Green Construction Code (IGCC) are nearing completion of the first-ever integrated green code for traditional and high-performance commercial buildings, set for a public release in March.
The U.S. EPA greenhouse gas reporting rule
There was heightened public attention on climate action in 2009 because President Obama shifted U.S. policy from being defensive to being proactive. Three strong federal measures for climate action were taken in advance of the Copenhagen Climate Conference in December 2009, where a binding agreement on emissions levels was expected.
Renewable energy legislation passes in China
Chinese government officials announced the passage of legislation that requires grid owners to use electricity generated by renewable energy sources.
First integrated green construction code poised for 2010 debut
Drafters of the International Code Council's International Green Construction Code are nearing completion of the first-ever integrated green code for traditional and high-performance commercial buildings.
Large UPS Technology report: Balancing green and high reliability
Twenty five years ago, the large UPS market—500 kVA and above—was served by two distinctly different technologies: rotary and static. At that time, a rotary UPS for data center applications was a rather kluge-like combination of motors and generators, while a static UPS was a step-wave inverter-based technology (Figure 1). The slow switching statics of the day had many reliability and application issues, while the rotaries were very inefficient but, in many cases, more reliable.
Get shovel-ready for the new economy
View the full story, including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition The term “shovel-ready” became popular after the Obama administration announced that billions of dollars would be injected into the construction market to help resuscitate a dying economy. Shovel-ready projects —those that municipalities had on their books and were ready to begin after the dollars were secured—were given priority. While some economists are pointing to data indicating the national economic recession might be over, the commercial construction industry is far from feeling the impacts of recovery.
Energy policy: The view from Washington
Energy and environmental legislation will be slow and may stall. Engineers should work ahead of it to serve their clients.
The light at the end of the tunnel
View the full story, including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition For many of us who design lighting and lighting control systems, the recession may have severely curtailed our efforts to continue designing state-of-the-art systems. The recession also may have thwarted our ability to stay abreast of changing user attitudes and technological innovations in real-world applications. As a result, many of us may have missed out on designing the lighting and lighting controls projects that people will likely want when construction begins to rebound in earnest.
Redefining the role of electrical engineers
The successful engineer is on top of all of the emerging technologies and practices. System scalability, modularity, and system efficiency are terms that have been around for years, but as energy use in data centers has become a larger part of the bottom line, CEOs and CFOs are demanding more efficient critical environments.
Wireless (with strings attached)
Our roundtable discusses the definition of what's wireless in a wireless system; the options for providing power to a wireless system; the financial benefits of a wireless system; and the unique solutions wireless systems provide.
EPA final rule: Greenhouse gases are dangerous
Following a 60-day comment period, the U.S. EPA's final rule states that greenhouse gases threaten the public health and welfare of the American people.
Las Vegas CityCenter opens
CityCenter's 67 acres offers residences, casino, and other amenities in an environmentally friendly setting.
New Virginia Tech report reveals mass-notification lapses
New report on Virginia Tech massacre reveals new timeline, details of notifcation lapses
Enhancing emergency power
Hospital emergency power systems must be reliable, scaleable, and cost-effective in order to work for extended periods.
Maximizing MCF standby power
Identify equipment, systems design, and maintenance procedures that contribute to dependable standby power systems for critical facilities.
U.S. unemployment to peak by March: poll
National Assn. of Business Economics panelists believe the end of net employment losses is near.
U.S., China make clean energy announcements
The United States and China have announced a variety of measures to strengthen the countries' clean energy efforts.
Controlling dew point
Modern problems with high humidity, poor comfort, condensation, and mold are avoided by using a new version of an old technique.
Whole-building shutdown tests
Properly specifying how to conduct an intentional power outage and recovery reduces risks and increases the likelihood this critical test is performed.
NSA building $1.5 billion cyber security data center
The massive complex, comprising up to 1.5 million sq ft of building space, will provide intelligence and warnings related to cyber security threats across government bodies.
Slump sinks visa program
The weak economy has eroded employment even among highly trained professionals.
The U.S. government’s plan to improve the nation’s smart grid
A $3.4-billion portion of the ARRA will help modernize the U.S. smart grid, while integrating renewable energy resources into the nation's power infrastructure.
Retail, office buildings the best bet
Retail and office fare best in commercial construction decline through 2010.
Bentley announces major product releases, subscription refinements, and acquisitions/partnerships
Bentley Systems Inc. released a series of announcements at its invitation-only "Be Inspired: Infrastructure Best Practices Symposium and Awards event" in Charlotte, N.C.
President Obama orders for a trim in greenhouse gases at federal agencies
Obama's Executive Order requires federal agencies meet new sustainability and energy efficiency guidelines.
Stimulus funding boosts construction spending
Reed Construction Data's chief economist analyzes how the stimulus plan has benefitted the construction market through the first three quarters of 2009.
Energy simulation key to high-performance buildings
Bentley, DOE see robust energy simulation as key to creation of high-performance buildings.
As recovery begins, nonresidential construction will lag behind
The "delayed recession" in nonresidential construction means a slower recovery for the market as the economy begins to grow again.
Government releases smart grid framework
A90-page document released by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) on Sept. 24 proposes 77 standards for smart grid development. The report also detailed 14 areas that the government agency will prioritize in order to facilitate development. Utilities, regulators, and vendors have been waiting for this release from NIST.
Green design vs. green performance
The latest version of LEED 2009 (v3) requires high-performing buildings to perform up to even higher standards, but key issues remain unaddressed.
Fenway fire protection
The upgraded fire protection system provides centralized control of the newly installed systems for Fenway Park, the executive offices, a restaurant, and the park’s Bleacher Bar located in center field. All photos: Honeywell Fire Systems View the full story, including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition Fire detection and fire control functions are major considerations for sports arenas and other places of public assembly. In a modern commercial building setting, it has become abundantly clear that voice evacuation systems need to do more than direct people to the nearest point of egress.
Louver design guidelines for non-traditional areas
Today's wind-driven rain, hurricane, and noise control louvers offer practical solutions for demanding building conditions.
The future of HVAC design
As I retire at the end of a 54-year career in the HVAC industry, I can't help reflecting that my timing is a bit off. I find myself envious of the young mechanical engineers who are entering the design business. Why? Because for the first time, the emphasis is truly on good design for low energy use.
High-performance buildings boosted by stimulus funds
Massachusetts seeks plans for "high-performance" buildings.
Is the safety of U.S. electrical products in danger?
View the full story, including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition To sell many types of products in North America, manufacturers must have their products certified by an independent certification organization. That certification process verifies that products comply with relevant safety requirements prior to entering the marketplace. For many products in Europe, however, manufacturers can self-declare that their products comply with requirements.
Unifying the smart grid
With the unprecedented unification of power, communications, and information technology (IT) planned for the emerging smart grid, companies across typically siloed industries are adapting product roadmaps to dovetail with this tremendous federal undertaking. The IEEE P2030 work group is facilitating cooperation and visibility among power, communications, and IT silos to produce the long-term unification that is necessary to make the smart grid a success. The term “smart grid” gives important identity to a gathering, broad-based drive to improve the United States' electrical utility infrastructure. The nation's electrical grid has been getting “smarter” for years.
Bearing protection for breakdown protection
The 48-story Time & Life Building in New York, located in the Manhattan business and entertainment complex known as Rockefeller Center, needed a preventive maintenance plan to protect against bearing damage in HVAC motors. All photos: Electro Static Technology A preventive maintenance plan at the prominent Time & Life Building in New York City serves as an example of the widespread problem of electrical bearing damage in HVAC motors. The 48-story building is one of 19 buildings in the Manhattan business and entertainment complex known as Rockefeller Center.
Report card for green schools
Institutions around the country continue to develop ways to rank and evaluate green colleges and universities.
Al Gore to keynote Greenbuild
Former Vice President and noted environmental advocate Al Gore will open as keynote speaker at the Greenbuild conference in Phoenix this November.
Web-based tools track federal stimulus spending
Looking for a slice of stimulus funds? Online maps show where the money goes.
Australia sponsors green air conditioner
Solar-power cooling unit said to be 12 times more efficient than traditional systems.
Vegas bets on sustainability
A new casino, hotel, and shopping district in Las Vegas is using energy efficient materials and is hoping to become LEED certified.
MEP Giants 2009
Editor's note: A pull-out poster tabulating the CSE MEP Giants firms is included with this issue. The poster has ranking for 2009 and 2008, revenue figures, and contact information for the MEP Giant. The poster is available at Giants 2009 Poster The construction market of 2008 closed dramatically different from how it opened.
Letters – 2009-08-01
Europeans versus Americans on energy Energy taxes are needed Europeans have placed large taxes on energy for decades recognizing the other impacts (costs) of energy use beyond the extraction, processing, and delivery costs. We need to get serious about gradually applying energy taxes here and efficiently direct their use toward energy-saving technologies. LARRY B Demographics and climate change I'm an American HVAC engineer who's been working in the U.K. for a while.
CSE adds two editorial board members
Consulting-Specifying Engineer is pleased to welcome two new members to our Editorial Advisory Board, Brian Rener (left) and Gerald Versluys. The two new members assist editors in reviewing magazine content for technical accuracy and consistency. Rener, PE and LEED AP, is the senior design manager for Chicago-based M+W Zander US Operations.
New study predicts big benefits from energy savings
The U.S. Green Building Council has released a study that states with changes to building efficiency, Americans will see an increase in jobs and decrease in greenhouse gasses.
Rainwater feeds fire sprinklers
It's rainwater to the rescue if fire sprinkler is needed at Missouri middle school.
Reclaimed water chilling Microsoft data center
Treated wastewater is cooling a Microsoft data center in Washington state; Yahoo and Intuit data centers may be next.
Electrical contractors see market decline
Analysts are watching spending on school, hospital, and transportation construction.
Smart lighting control saves stadium money
The Rogers Centre in Toronto was retrofitted with automated, intelligent, and Web-based lighting controls that will cut its lighting costs by $300,000.
Retrofitting high-rises to go green
Iconic skyscrapers find new luster by going green.
Who’s in control of controls?
View the full story, including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition CSE: What real benefits are owners gaining from open standards such as BACnet and LONworks? Are we really better off than we were with proprietary controls? Nicos Peonides : Yes we are. Owners have more options in procuring direct digital controls (DDC) and BAS for both new and existing buildings, resulting in more competitive pricing for these systems. Open standards enable more straightforward integration of systems with the BAS, a higher degree of automation, more functional and consequently more energy-efficient and sustainable buildings.
Data center or telecom room?
Capital costs and operating costs are two of the biggest concerns for building owners and operators. For new and retrofitted buildings, the capital cost of construction can determine whether a project can proceed or not. Whether a facility contains a large or small amount of technology equipment, the proper interpretation and application of the code is imperative to avoid inflating capital construction costs through the design and construction process.
Ensuring emergency power performance
Several rivers in the Midwest swelled well beyond their banks in 2008, causing multiple levee failures and widespread flooding. Homes and businesses became islands surrounded by raging waters. When the flooding knocked out the municipal power supply, many relied on emergency generators to provide electricity. Businesses and industries commonly rely on emergency generators to provide power in the event of utility outages.
Fire pumps in high-rise buildings
View the full story, including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition The NFPA 20 Standard for the Installation of Stationary Pumps for Fire Protection committee has proposed and accepted a new chapter covering fire pumps in high-rise buildings. A final vote by the full NFPA body at the spring 2009 NPFA convention is necessary before the changes officially become part of next edition of NFPA 20. This proposed high-rise chapter has significant implications for high-rise fire protection and may also impact cost and some current design practices. The provisions in this chapter were developed in response to observed significant differences in the way fire pumps were used in high-rise buildings, and concern that some of the design practices would not provide the high level of reliability needed. After the destruction of the World Trade Center on Sept.
The 10 hardest jobs to fill in America
According to a story on Forbes.com, you're working in one of the toughest jobs to fill. For the second year in a row, engineers ranked No. 1 as the most sought-after workers in staffing firm Manpower's list. Why are engineers so hard to find? “We have whole generations of people loving liberal arts, not going into science and math,” said Larry Jacobson, executive director of the Na...
Interns join editorial team
Consulting-Specifying Engineer welcomes two college students as editorial interns this summer. Both interns will work in print and online media, and assist with all aspects of the magazine and its content. Consulting-Specifying Engineer editors are dedicated to teaching students about engineering, and are closely mentoring them through this 12-week journalism program.
U.S. to spend $3.9 billion on smart grid
DOE Secretary Steven Chu has announced $3.9 billion in smart grid funding.
LEED may be coming soon for data centers
The U.S. Green Building Council is considering adjusting LEED to incorporate the energy used by commercial data centers.
SMUD rolls out a smart electrical grid
The Sacramento Municipal Utility District is set to roll out a smart grid.
Wireless sensors resolve industrial, economic, societal challenges, says Honeywell
Beth Wozniak, president of Honeywell Sensing and Control, says sensors and networking technologies are creating pervasive sensing, producing a world of interconnected sensors, along with many benefits. She made the comments June 10 at Sensors Expo.
Integrating Electrical Systems
With many facilities relying on multiple power sources to ensure continuous operation, the value of integrating and coordinating these electrical systems becomes critical. Integrated power systems can include primary utility transformers, standby engine generators, UPSs (battery or rotary), fuel cells, and other types of power sources. The integration of these electrical systems requires careful planning, communication with other project team members, and support in the field during installation and startup. Numerous items need to be addressed during the planning phase.
ASHRAE 90.1 book combines codes
The International Code Council and ASHRAE have teamed to publish the 2009 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC) and the ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1-2007, Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings, in one book. The new publication is a powerful document that the government can use to qualify for federal energy grants, and a guide for the construction industr...
BAS design issues
View the full story, including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition View "Systems design and performance tips for packaged rooftop units" in the first edition of the HVAC Technology Report We know it's tough out there for BAS designers who want to keep up with the latest in sensors and controls. You know that sensors and controls are “where the rubber meets the road” in HVAC. But the available hardware and software mutate faster than an H1N1 flu virus on steroids.
Software theft ranks high
The Business Software Alliance states that manufacturing, sales, and service industries were the three leading victims of piracy in 2008.
MEP Insider – 2009-05-27
Recent hires and promotions
Climate Positive program developed
The Clinton Climate Initiative will demonstrate a model for sustainable urban growth with projects in 10 countries on six continents.
U.S. GBC Federal Summit convened
U.S. Green Building Council 2009 Federal Summit convened May 14 in Washington, D.C.
BICSI releases reference manual
New manual will become the foundation document for electronic safety and security credential applicants.
Congressional Coalition files report on high-performance federal buildings
A Congressional Coalition issued recommendations regarding the development of high-performance federal buildings.
Legislation to support building safety re-introduced
New legislation to establish a competitive grant program in the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development to help local governments with enforcement of residential, building, fire, energy, plumbing, and related codes was introduced in the U.S. Senate.
Autodesk Developer Network supports 2010 software portfolio for design
More than 600 add-on applications now available for the Autodesk 2010 product family help provide increased efficiency and productivity to 2-D and 3-D software customers worldwide.
U.S. power grid seen at risk
Members of Congress launched an effort Thursday to protect the nation's electricity grid from criminals, vandals, or U.S. enemies.
2009 40 Under 40 Winners
The 2009 40 Under 40 winners are among some of the best and brightest minds in our industry. They've created innovative systems to solve difficult engineering problems, both in North America and abroad. These young geniuses have won awards and risen quickly to the top in their fields. They've worked hard to bring their projects—and their companies—into the spotlight.
What’s notable about MNS
View the full story, including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition Our panel discusses the importance, application, and necessary improvements needed for mass notification systems in hospitals, college campuses, and commercial buildings. CSE: What situations require the use of mass notification systems (MNS)? Ray Grill: Currently, the Department of Defense is the only entity that requires MNS to be installed in its facilities. MNS can be appropriate for a facility or area that is susceptible to hazards that may require the occupants to take some action (or stay in place) to prevent them from being impacted by the hazard. Mark Suski: Any facility that has multiple buildings—a college campus—or a building with an extensive footprint—a hospital or shopping mall—should have a MNS to notify occupants in the event of an emergency. The armed forces have been installing MNS on military bases for many years in the form of speakers and public address systems.
New lead pipe requirements
California lead content requirements for plumbing products effective Jan. 1, 2010.
Green commercial building code
The International Code Council will initiate a green code development project.
Clean Cities gets a boost
Vice President Biden announces $300 million in recovery act funds for Clean Cities program.
WTC office towers could be put off for decades
New World Trade Center office towers might not be built and occupied for nearly 30 years.
Interview: Healthcare market holding steady even in down economy
Midwest Real Estate News interviewed Tag Birge about the healthcare construction market.
Ballpark statisticians follow a new count, the toilet ratio
If nothing else, $2 billion worth of baseball ballparks should buy shorter waits for the restrooms, at least for women.
MEP Insider – 2009-04-09
Recent hires and promotions
BICSI releases ANSI-accredited standard for educational institutions
ANSI/BICSI-001-2009, Information Transport Systems Design Standard for K-12 Educational Institutions, has been released.
Unraveling electrical integration
Building equipment systems—typically electrical and mechanical systems—and telecommunications systems are critical parts of a building's functionality. These systems need to coexist and are a primary concern for engineers. They have separate requirements and separate purposes, but are integrated within the overall facility.
Athletic center aims high
In Oskaloosa, Iowa, William Penn University recently underwent the largest and greenest expansion in the private university's 135-year history. The project featured geothermal heating and cooling, fabric ductwork, energy recovery ventilators (ERVs), and advanced BAS. The recent additions help make the 155,000-sq-ft Penn Athletic Center (PAC) the most efficient building on campus.
Testing emergency lighting systems
View the full story, including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition Unfortunately, emergency lighting equipment often is installed and forgotten. Despite numerous federal, state, and local codes requiring routine testing and documentation, mandated testing of emergency lighting units remains a “hit or miss” proposition. James Lathrop, vice president of Koffel Associcates , Elkridge, Md.-based independent fire protection engineering firm, said, “Excluding healthcare and most government buildings, based on my experience I would estimate that more than 75% of the building owners/mangers across the country are not testing their emergency lighting as mandated by the NFPA 101 Life Safety Code .” The Life Safety Code, which was established by NFPA nearly a century ago, sets very specific standards for the presence and routine testing of life safety equipment. Specifically, every emergency lighting fixture requires a monthly 30-sec test, as well as an annual 90-min test.
Kuwait refinery construction screeches to a halt
Kuwait National Petroleum Co. has ordered Fluor Corp. to stop construction of a refinery.
MEP Insider – 2009-03-25
Recent hires and promotions
Smart Grid could be vulnerable to hackers
Several reports point to the vulnerability of the Smart Grid.
Corporate complex named Green Development of the Year
The National Assn. of Industrial Office Properties recognizes the LEED Gold-certified HSBC's North American headquarters.
BICSI announces new ITS credential
BICSI offers a new credential for information transport systems professionals.
Fire kills seven at Bangladesh mall
A blaze tore through the country's largest shopping mall, killing seven people and injuring 50 others in the high-rise complex
Michigan proposal puts LEED power into local hands
A bill introduced in the Michigan legislature would permit local governments to mandate green-building standards.
Economy straining engineer/agency relations
According to an AEC consultant, the economic downturn could be causing friction between public agencies, and the consultants working to meet the public’s needs.
Experts reject NAIOP study
Leaders from ASHRAE, ACEEE, New Buildings Institute, and Yudelson Associates voice strong opposition, say study's faults result in misleading conclusions.
Using gray water efficiently
View the full story , including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition Most engineers focus on lighting, HVAC, windows, and building siting when designing an efficient building. Often secondary on the list is designing a water-efficient building, which can be accomplished with various methods like no-water urinals, dual-flush water closets, and water reclamation, i.e., harvested rainwater and gray water. It’s sometimes referred to as graywater or grey water.
Fire and life safety in a high-rise
View the full story , including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition A typical building fire begins slowly, as combustible materials are gradually warmed by a heat source to their ignition temperature. The level of fire protection installed within a building and the response of the local fire department will determine whether a fire is controlled or grows into an inferno. This article will describe the extremely different outcomes of two similar fires in two similar high-rise buildings and will explain why one event became a catastrophe while the other garnered merely a brief mention on the nightly news. Recipe for disaster The first fire is the disastrous Feb. 1, 1974, high-rise fire at the 25-story Joelma Building in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
Systems design and performance tips for packaged rooftop units (RTUs)
A currently fashionable adage is “Where you stand depends upon where you sit.” That certainly applies to attitudes about direct-expansion unitary rooftop HVAC units (RTUs or “packaged air conditioning units”). Not surprisingly, manufacturers' representatives speak of RTUs as the workhorses of the industry, as though they are proud Budweiser Clydesdale horses lined up on building roofs. One senior engineer of a manufacturer extolled the long, consistent improvement in the efficiency ratings of RTUs—and tipped us off that the newest version of ASHRAE 90.1, due in 2010, will raise the bar again. He pointed to the current system of three tiers that allows engineers to balance a unit's efficiency level with its price.
Networked controls for a 21st century university
View the full story , including all images and figures, in our monthly digital edition Have you ever asked “What will the 21st century university look like?” The was the question posed to Cannon Design when Ave Maria University (AMU) began planning a completely new campus near Naples, Fla. An optimal system for building controls, telecom, audio/visual, and safety was the answer. For decades, the 16-division Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) MasterFormat has been the standard in building design and construction. However, as technology—particularly network technology—has evolved, it is clear the old standards do not address the integrated systems designed into today's buildings. The need for construction specifications to reflect current building practices prompted CSI to develop Division 17 for Technology and Communications Infrastructure .
Are energy efficiency improvements unreachable?
A study released by NAIOP, the Commercial Real Estate Development Assn., suggests that office building managers find it difficult--if not impossible--to effectively balance energy efficiency requirements while keeping their structures economically feasible.
HVAC engineers should consider climate change
A report from the Institution of Mechanical Engineers urges HVAC designers and engineers to take ongoing climate changes into account when designing new HVAC/R, and revamping existing systems.
Green-building partnership expanded
The Clinton Climate Initiative and U.S. Green Building Council agree to collaborate on efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from newly constructed buildings.
Stimulus package clears the path for renewable energy
President Obama’s Stimulus Package gave a boost to the renewable-energy sector.
You clicked, we responded: CSE’s Top Five features and news items from 2008
You clicked and we responded. CSE's Top Five features and news items from 2008 are available right here.
L.A. enacts the largest LED lighting retrofit on record
Los Angeles will replace its 140,000 streetlight fixtures with LED units over the next five years. L.A. will receive help from the Clinton Climate initiative for taking part in the most extensive municipal green lighting retrofit on record.
Autodesk launches new AEC software suite
The 2010 software suite is geared toward helping architects, engineers, and contractors integrate BIM.
Software keeps buildings on budget
A tool created by legendary architect Frank Gehry could help building designers keep tabs on design and construction costs.
Ultracapacitors could smarten the power grid
By storing sudden surges of power, a new generation of ultracapacitors could deliver the technology and capacity necessary to handle integration of irregular renewable energy sources--such as wind and sola--while keeping up with demand.
Engineers Week celebrates the field’s future
With kid-friendly events like the Future City Competition and Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day, the 2009 Engineers Week festivities--Feb. 15-21--look to bring the bright young stars of tomorrow into the field today.
Forum offers energy-efficiency insight
EE Global 2009 will gather energy-efficiency professionals in the City of Lights to share technical, commercial, and policy knowledge.
A green stimulus package
President Obama's $900 billion stimulus package contains more than $100 billion for energy efficient, green initiatives
Harmonics & VFDs: prevention, analysis, resolution
Our roundtable explores the harmonics issue from prevention to problem resolution.
Installing a genset
Generator set installation involves lots of details, but don't overlook the broad concepts.
Renewable energy powers Antarctica
Technologies like wind and solar power catch on in Antarctica, reducing pollution fossil-fuel consumption.
Where are we headed? At the moment, it’s the wrong way
If the United States wants to believe it is an example, then we must lead any effort to curb energy use and environmental impact.
MEP Insider – 2009-01-14
Recent hires and promotions
Consulting-Specifying Engineer is proud to present its 2009 Editorial Advisory Board.
Trash-burning plant damaged by fire
An Iowa waste-to-energy plant suffers an estimated $30,000 in damages, thanks to a fire most likely started in the facility's shredder.
2009 Economic outlook
Access to credit has improved at the beginning of this year, so the projected further decline in nonresidential construction is primarily due to weaker space demand.
50 Ways to improve sustainability
By addressing certain items head-on, your engineering firm can have an impact on its carbon emissions and operate more environmentally friendly.
Report: Private design saves millions
According to the Polytechnic Institute of New York University, using private-sector engineers on public projects could save state taxpayers millions of dollars each year.
Is BIM ready for prime time engineered systems?
Mechanical, electrical, and plumbing engineers have justifiably lagged behind architects and structural engineers in their use of building information modeling (BIM) software. Is it the right time for them to upgrade?
Danfoss event brings HVAC/R heads together
During November's Danfoss EnVisioneering Symposium, more than 40 professionals gathered to discuss climate change, energy efficiency, pending legislation, and other critical issues impacting the industry.
Renewable energy sector could restore economy, and Kankakee County, Ill., wants to be at the forefront.
Statue of Liberty upgrades to plastic
In May 2008, renovation began on the Statue of Liberty Island to remove all galvanized metal HVAC equipment and other corrosive materials. John Culkin, president of C&S Building Services, Farmingdale, N.Y., led a team of five HVAC technicians to install two plastic cooling towers in place of the steel-clad towers, which had begun to rust and rot.
EPO: Emergency Power ON
Over the last several years, continuity of electrical power has become increasingly important not only to individual utility customers, but to the national and world economy. Meanwhile, confidence has eroded in our overstressed and aging utility grid given such events as the Chicago Loop outage of 2000, California’s rolling blackouts of 2001, the Northeast blackout of 2003, and the European outages of 2003 and 2006. To ensure that power is available when needed, many businesses are taking control by installing on-site generation.
Installation Considerations for IBC-Compliant Generator Sets
The International Code Council's (ICC) International Building Code (IBC) has replaced regional codes in most jurisdictions, making it the primary code document for engineers who specify and supervise the installation of generating equipment. Currently, authorities may be using either the 2000, 2003, or 2006 edition of the IBC, with one of these editions now adopted at either the state or local level in all 50 states. Recently, the State of California adopted the 2006 edition, leading the way for that edition to become a preeminent standard across the United States. The IBC addresses both the design and installation of building systems, with an emphasis on how those systems will perform in emergency situations—and continue to perform after such events. One big change for engineers specifying seismic-related equipment is that the United States is no longer divided into broad seismic zones.
The half-full glass
While contemplating this month’s column, I noticed that the glass on my desk was half-full of coffee—cold, cruddy, day-old coffee from the community pot—that I poured into the glass so I could give my cup its annual cleaning. Why I didn’t throw the coffee away, I can’t imagine.
Back in black
According to reports from McGraw-Hill Construction and Reed Construction Data (a sister company of this magazine), the construction industry is set to contract in 2009. Even though new-construction volume is expected remain above $400 billion, negative growth tends to make people nervous. A question that has been popping up in the media is whether the emerging green market will keep its momentum. True or not, green projects still have a stigma of being more expensive, and additional costs are being heavily scrutinized. But the green market is more than green buildings.
New lighting system makes Irish theater sing
Equipment from Electronic Theatre Controls lights up Wexford Opera House.
Lighting design award closes soon
The 2009 IALD International Lighting Design Awards submission deadline is Nov. 17, 2008.
BICSI offers deal on technical publications
BICSI combined its technical publications into a package deal with the BICSI Members-Only Resource Library. A value-priced offer through their BICSI membership, ITS professionals will have instant access to the information needed to perform the proper procedures in designing and installing infrastructure.
Picking the right fire extinguisher
When supplying a building with fire extinguishers and suppressants, ensuring the security of the entire structure is extremely important. As mentioned in NFPA 10 Chapter 1, portable fire extinguishers are intended to be the first line of defense for fires of a limited size and can be used in several areas including vehicle repair, aircraft and marine servicing, cooking areas, and storage and m...
Is there a beastly building in your neighborhood?
A recent poll of architects and critics from around the globe generated a list of the world’s ugliest buildings—many of which can be found in the U.S.
DOE and EPA release report on advancing energy efficiency in data centers
The U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released the report, “Energy Efficiency in Data Centers: Recommendations for Government-Industry Coordination,” that details the discussions and recommendations covered during a national strategy workshop on July 8, 2008.
Though New York construction down, RCD indicates commercial construction stable
New York City's building boom is coming to a close, and commercial building is declining, reports the New York Building Congress. But Reed Construction Data reports that commercial construction is stable.
Filipinos draw power from buried heat
The Philippine government has championed geothermal power, and the United States can only learn from their success.
Government construction projects hit a wall
Under strain, cities are cutting back projects.
Down the drain
Many cities in America are waking up to the fact that water supply for buildings is fast becoming an urgent issue.
Industry Roundup – 2008-09-23 – 2008-09-23
Details about contracts awarded and other industry news.
M/E Insider – 2008-09-23
New hires, promotions, and information at MEP firms.
Credit woes worsen for commercial construction
While borrowing rates have fallen for prime-rate mortgages and public works, they've increased for commercial projects, and relief most likely won't come until 2009.
Copper thief a real live wire
Man zapped with 11,000 V while trying to pilfer cable.
GSA opposes new high-rise building provisions: STORY UPDATED
The dispute reflects a debate among safety officials and real estate executives nationwide as to how to respond adequately to the 2001 attacks.
Industry Roundup – 2008-09-10 – 2008-09-10
Details about contracts awarded and other industry news.
PBS&J taps new COO
National AEC firm chooses new chief operating officer from within its ranks.
Data centers add energy savings
Data center energy use has become a target for both environmentalists and corporate accountants, with improved efficiency seen as critical to both reducing greenhouse gas emissions and financial returns.
Security management system
Secure facilities, such as government and military installations, manage intrusion detection, and access control and video surveillance from a single-user interface with the Pro-Watch security management system from Honeywell.
Casting call for Cx
Like the rest of the design-build team, the commissioning service provider, often termed the commissioning authority, commissioning agent, or CxA, is contracted to perform a service for the owner. Unlike the mature disciplines of architecture and engineering, the services of the CxA are new and often misunderstood.
Data centers for Uncle Sam
Growing computing needs have forced many government agencies into a corner they did not foresee.
WSP Flack + Kurtz undergoes name change
WSP Flack + Kurtz is the new name of the engineering firm formerly known as Flack + Kurtz Inc. “WSP fully complements our core belief in designing for a sustainable future”, said David Cooper, president and CEO of WSP Flack + Kurtz.
Natural gas could save us all this winter
More natural gas production could make winter heating costs drop.
Inquiry into deadly high-rise fire in NYC
Investigators suggest that a series of building code violations--and perhaps firefighting problems, as well--led to the tragedy.
Illuminating Engineering Society names award winners
The Society received 400 entries resulting in 8 International Awards and 151 Awards of Merit. The International Awards included one Award of Distinction, five Awards for Excellence, and two Special Citations.
Industry roundup: partnerships, mergers, etc. – 2008-08-14 – 2008-08-14
News from Danfoss, Calmac Manufacturing, Schréder Lighting USA, Fire-Lite Alarms, Alabama Power, LDPI Lighting, Johnson Controls, and E-Switch.
Lego group builds mini Olympic model
It may not set any world records, but this plastic village spares no detail. The Hong Kong Lego User Group paid homage to the Beijing Olympics with a series of models. View pictures of the Olympic Stadium (the “Bird’s nest”), Olympic Village, National Aquatics Center (water cube), and residence buildings.
DOE pursues zero-net energy commercial buildings
The Dept. of Energy has launched the Zero-Net Energy Commercial Building Initiative.
Energy misers take aim at PCs
A consortium is working to decrease energy use of PCs and laptops in a shift from the traditional digs at power-hungry data centers.
Critical look at power
This month's panel discusses what facilities need mission critical power and at what levels, successful design schemes, technological advancements, and commissioning for these facilities. CSE: The term “mission critical” applies to data centers, telecom centers, and healthcare facilities.
Washington, D.C., rules in favor of full disclosure of Energy Star scores
The DC Council unanimously passed the Clean and Affordable Energy Act of 2008, which includes the benchmarking mandate that building owners annually reveal Energy Star scores.
Four-day school week will offer financial relief for several school districts
A four-day school week, born out of Utah’s mandated four-day work week, may prove to be the financially smart response to soaring fuel prices. Eliminating one day of school, in order to preserve educational programs and qualified staff members in parts of Kentucky, New Mexico, and Minnesota, has begun to outweigh some parents’ concerns about finding day care for their children.
M/E insider: recent new hires and promotions – 2008-07-24
News from RTKL, Leo A. Daly, National Council of Examiners of Engineering, Cannon Design, CSI, Peter Basso Assocs., KAI Design & Build, Newcomb & Boyd, BSA LifesStructures, Sebesta Blomberg, Mactec Engineering and Consulting Inc., and Syska Hennessy Group.
Industry roundup: partnerships, mergers, etc. – 2008-07-24
News from WaterFurnace Renewable Energy, Hubbell Lighting, Emerson Climate Technologies, Johnson Controls, Lenox, TAC, and ABB Ltd.
Science in sustainability to be discussed at Greenbuild
Greenbuild International Conference & Expo’s closing plenary, Science in Sustainability, will take place on Friday, Nov. 21, 2008.
Teaching an old grid new tricks
Increased investor interest in the improvement of power grids drives success
Princeton Review adds green grades to college ratings
The annual college guide will feature a "green rating" for the first time in its 2009 edition. More than 600 college profiles will be graded on envrironmental responsibility, sustainable buildings, and other criteria.
Utah closes government buildings on Fridays, moves to four-day work week
Gov. Jon Huntsman says the change will help Utah reach its goal of reducing energy use 20% by 2015. In government offices, turning off the lights, heat, and air conditioning on Fridays in 1,000 of 3,000 government buildings will save about $3 million a year. The year-long experiment begins Aug. 4.
Industry roundup: partnerships, mergers, etc. – 2008-07-10
News from S&C Electric, Lochinvar, Ferraz Shawmut, Leviton, Dual-Life, and CES Group.
Student CIRT-ACE competition fosters creative design and quality presentations
The ACE Mentor Program of Frederick, Md., took top honors as the winning entry in the second annual CIRT-ACE Design Competition, conducted with the Construction Industry Round Table (CIRT) Spring Conference in Washington, D.C. The Frederick Team was one of 10 entrants vying for a first-place prize of $3,000 and bragging rights as the best student design presented by an affiliate.
New fire system for Old West
Located northwest of downtown Tulsa, Okla., the Gilcrease Museum is one of the country's most comprehensive facilities for the preservation and study of American art and history. Drawing thousands of visitors from around the world for a glimpse into the past, the Gilcrease Museum houses the world's largest collection of art and artifacts of the American West.
Chart data center energy use
The Data Center Energy Profiler, or DC Pro, an online software tool provided by the U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE), is now available in release 1.1.1. The tool is designed to help industries quickly diagnose how data centers use energy. A company can use DC Pro as a first step to identify potential savings and to reduce environmental emissions.
Technology is power
This month's panel discusses on-site power, with regard to power generation, new designs, and renewable technologies.
2008 40 Under 40
The 2008 40 Under 40 winners highlighted here are among the elite. They are engineers and business owners, mothers and fathers, inventors and innovators, athletes and mentors. They were selected based on a variety of criteria, which started with a nomination from a colleague, supervisor, or mentor.
Nineteenth annual energy efficiency forum held in Washington, D.C.
The event creates awareness of technical, economic and political solutions available to optimize energy-efficiency.
Mission-critical 500-kVA PDU by PDI
Wavestar mission-critical 500-kVA PDU by PDI with two point locks, and bus connections for the transformer and circuit breakers.
Is my building certified green? Does it need to be?
The importance of understanding the difference between building green, building a certified building, and sustainability with respect to building construction.
Challenge: Slash air conditioners’ electricity use
University of California Davis energy-efficiency experts recently launched a novel program designed to slash electricity use by rooftop air conditioners in the western United States by more than 40%.
Jack of all industries, master of none
Is your engineering firm spread thin across several market sectors, or does it focus on a select few? Here are some tips on how to analyze your firm’s status.
M/E insider: recent new hires and promotions – 2008-06-12
News from Lilker Assocs., Syska Hennessy Group, Smith Seckman Reid, KAI Design & Build, BSA LifeStructures, and MACTEC.
Nation’s tallest sustainable skyscraper rises 975 feet
Comcast Center—the newest, tallest, and greenest member of the Philadelphia skyline—officially opened at a reception on June 6.
Univ. of Wyoming wins national BIM award
The University of Wyoming's College of Engineering and Applied Science architectural engineering program received a national award for its innovative design curriculum facilitated by Building Information Modeling.
AIA bestows University of Wyoming with national BIM award
The University of Wyoming's College of Engineering and Applied Science architectural engineering program received a national award for its innovative design curriculum facilitated by building information modeling (BIM). AIA honored UW, Laramie, Wyo., for its work in the “Academic Program or Curriculum Development” category of the fourth annual BIM Awards.
Be Prepared: Hospital Protection for Catastrophic Events
As healthcare engineers, it's one thing to know the Boy Scout motto—and another to design for it. It's almost impossible, not to mention cost-prohibitive, to plan for every unforeseen occurrence. But natural and manmade catastrophes occur all too often, and when they do, they drive home the importance of designing hospitals to withstand potential disasters.
No gambling allowed on smoke control in Las Vegas
Clark County, Nev., has required smoke control systems since the disastrous 1980 MGM Grand fire, which killed 87 people, and the 1981 Hilton Hotel fire, which killed eight people. Three-quarters of the fatalities in these Las Vegas fires were due to smoke inhalation that occurred far from the fire areas.
Ready for retail
Industry has a way of setting trends, such as the design of a building or the ways in which that building will be used. Designing for retail structures is no different. Trends in today's marketplace have dictated the evolution of two primary forms of shopping mall designs. The first is the traditional, totally enclosed mall with common areas, atria, and anchor stores.
Tenant sub-billing software
PowerLogic Tenant Metering Commercial Edition from Schneider Electric has been added to the company's existing range of tenant submetering software. The new billing software enables commercial property managers to allocate and recover the actual cost of their utilities while adhering to government cost allocation regulations.
Portable generator sets
Portable generators are available in two new lines from Generac. The Generac XP line of portablegenerators consists of durable construction with oversized full wrap frame tubing and impact-resistantcorners to prevent damage from rough handling. Available in five models, XP 4000, 6500E, 8000E, 10000Eand 16000E, the line includes utility-quality power for sensitive electronics and covered, circuitbreaker-protected outlets.
Tips for a successful ARC Awards entry
Adapted from Building Design + Constructions "How to Win" Tip Sheet
ACG meeting breaks records
Nearly 200 commissioning providers, engineers, and building owners attended the AABC Commissioning Group annual meeting in Las Vegas, April 22-24.
Beijing unveils the largest building in the world amid other building projects
Terminal 3 in Beijing’s airport is adorned with the colors of imperial China and a roof that evokes the scales of a dragon. The massive glass- and steel-sheathed structure cost $3.8 billion and handles more than 50 million passengers a year. Beijing hopes to remove the negative perceptions surrounding its country’s image as host of the Olympic Games by emphasizing its ability to upgrade and modernize, at least when it comes to buildings and infrastructure projects.
Data center fire suppression
The average 14,000-sq.-ft data center pushes a 2,400 kW load and 700 tons of heat daily. Generated by small blade servers and overcrowded racks, loads of this size burden the data center’s electrical circuits—which may not be properly grounded—causing equipment to overheat in areas without proper cooling.
Lighting is such a subjective thing.
Detecting carbon monoxide
When building professionals discuss carbon monoxide, they're uncertain as to where and how detection should be installed.
UPDATE: Chicago, county, firms to pay $100 million to settle suits in 2003 Chicago high-rise fire
Environmental Systems Design, Chicago, and SimplexGrinnell, Boca Raton, Fla., among the defendants. City of Chicago to pay $50 million.
Earthquake expert: older structures vulnerable in Midwest
An earthquake in the future of high magnitude would cause widespread damage, because unlike structures in California, bridges and buildings in the Midwest aren’t engineered to be earthquake resistant. The Midwest lies on the New Madrid fault.
M/E insider: recent new hires and promotions – 2008-04-23
News from EMCOR Group, Gotama Building Engineers, Smith Seckman Reid, BSA LifeStructures, Sebesta Blomberg, Syska Hennessy Group, KlingStubbins, Sys-tek, Peter Basso Assocs., Baxter & Woodman, MACTEC Engineering and Consulting, and Spectrum Engineers.
Mahogany Grille finds the cure for chilly customers
Customers were avoiding window seating because of cold air and drafts. New windows with heated glass changed all that.
World’s largest LED chandelier illuminated
The world’s Largest LED chandelier illuminated at Stanley Center for the Arts in Utica, N.Y.
Architects go barefoot for Earth Day
Architectural design firm challenges its people, clients, and communities to reduce their carbon footprint on April 22.
BICSI and TIA renew agreement to strenghten industry
BICSI announces the launch of a renewed collaboration agreement with the Telecommunications Industry Assn. in the ongoing effort to reach out and deploy new business systems that will benefit information transport systems industry professionals. The groups have agreed to cross-promote one another’s services, including certification and market intelligence programs, standards, case studies, and white papers.
M/E insider: recent new hires and promotions – 2008-04-10
News from RTKL Assocs., Harley Ellis Devereaux, SSRCx, EMCOR Group, Vision Land Consultants, Milone & MacBroom, Newcomb & Boyd, HOK, The Albert Kahn Family of Companies, and Syska Hennessy Group.
Illuminate large indoor or outdoor spaces, such as airports, sporting facilities, natatoriums, atriums, and other multi-story environments with the Ametrix XL Extra Large asymmetric fixture series from Cooper Lighting.
Is radiant cooling an option?
Mention radiant cooling to most HVAC engineers and you get a funny look. The first thing they ask is “What about the condensation?”
Power grid problems
This month’s panel discusses the national grid, its problem and innovations, and how to prepare for the digital future.
Depending on market sector, mixed results for nonresidential construction starts
The value of construction starts declined again in February, according to analysts from Reed Construction Data (RCD), continuing a trend of ebbing construction start totals that began in October 2007—and likely to continue through much of 2008.
ASHRAE, USGBC co-sponsor fellowship in Washington, D.C.
The one-year fellowship will allow the participant to work in the federal government in a technical advisory role. Applications are due May 1.
Case study: children’s hospital designed for speedy recoveries and power reliability
The bright, playful façade of Alberta Children’s Hospital in Calgary looks like a random stack of colored building blocks—and that’s how the kids who had a hand in its design wanted it. And even though the kids didn't design the standby power system, it is every bit as innovative.
HP acquires EYP MCF, offers new services
HP announced last week a set of products and services designed to help customers transform their data centers from a standalone collection of physical assets into a virtual and adaptive infrastructure designed—the logical result of the company’s acquisition of engineering firm EYP Mission Critical Facilities.
Buildings inspector charged with filing false report before NYC crane collapse
Authorities say the inspector never visited the crane, whose collapse on March 15 killed 7 people. However, officials say it is highly unlikely the missed inspection had any relation to the March 15 incident.
IEEE and NFPA collaborate on arc flash initiative
The Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers and the National Fire Protection Assn. have undertaken a joint research project to expand the knowledge of electric arc phenomena. Schneider Electric announced a $500,000 contribution to the effort.
Crane collapse in Manhattan kills four
Many residents of the neighborhood around the site of the collapse — 51st Street between Second and First Avenues—said they had been worried for months about the possibility of a collapse.
NFPA Standards Council contemplates changes to fireworks standard
Public hearing slated for June; public comments now being accepted.
The psychology of decisions
Because this month’s issue features articles and columns on thinking differently, green schools, and semantics, I thought it would be fun to discuss some research on how the brain works and the psychology of decisions. For any designer who has had a client choose Option C instead of the much preferred Options A or B, these findings should interest you.
Letters – 2008-03-01
Letters to the editor.
When UPS and gensets have issues
Uninterruptible power supplies (UPS) are an example of the profound impact electronics have had on the electrical distribution world. Not only do these devices provide instantaneous backup power in the event of a power outage, but they also provide clean power on a continuous basis.
Submetering for energy profiling
First introduced in the early 1980s, electric submeters continue to gain traction in the commercial, industrial, and institutional facility segments as front-line energy data gathering tools that can dramatically improve an owner's bottom line through greater visibility of the facility's total energy footprint.
Semantics, according to Merriam-Webster, is the study of meaning. Meaning is conveyed in words. The green movement needs to clarify its semantics—its words—if it is to lead us to sustainability. To start, the words “green” and “sustainability” mean different things, but often are used interchangeably.
Ignite opportunities to mentor fire protection engineers
We often hear or talk about formal mentoring programs. These programs are touted as employee benefits and advertised in recruiting campaigns. What does mentoring mean in the context of fire protection engineering?
Comment period open on Energy Star draft for computer servers
The EPA released its draft of the Energy Star standard for computer standards and invites feedback. The deadline to provide comments is March 14.
National Engineers Week “Future City” competition winners
A city of the future—“RA”—engineered by students from Heritage Middle School in Westerville, Ohio, won the 2008 National Engineers Week “Future City” competition
Portland, Ore.: America’s greenest city
Popular Science magazine ranks the top 50 greenest cities in America based on raw data from the U.S. Census Bureau and the National Geographic Society’s Green Guide. Portland barely edges out San Francisco as the greenest city in America.
ASHRAE bestows Technology Awards to outstanding building projects
Read about project winners in the Heath Care, Commercial Building, Institutional Building, Public Assembly, and Industrial Facilities or Processes categories.
M/E insider: recent new hires and promotions – 2008-02-14
News from Dunham Assocs., JacobsCarter Burgess, Peter Basso Assocs., KlingStubbins, Smith Seckman Reid, MACTEC Engineering & Consulting, Tetra Tech Rizzo, EMCOR Group, Howard R. Green Co., IBA Consultants, TLC Engineering, and more.
First LEED-certified museum in State of New York
The Wild Center/Natural History Museum of the Adirondacks, a new museum complex in Tupper Lake, N.Y., has earned distinction as the first LEED-certified museum in the State of New York.
Keep young electrical engineers grounded
James Cawley and Gerald Homce of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) published key findings in a comprehensive analyses of workplace electrical injuries.
Construction to grow in 2008
FMI publishes its U.S. Construction Overview and predicts that green building, employee ownership, productivity improvement, and the Hispanic workforce will positively impact the 2008 construction industry.
M/E Insider – 2008-01-31
News from Opus Architects & Engineers Inc., Peter Bass Assocs., Smith Seckman Reid, and more.
Consulting-Specifying Engineer selected to promote National Conference on Building Commissioning
Consulting-Specifying Engineer magazine was selected by Portland Energy Conservation Inc. (PECI) as a media partner to promote the National Conference on Building Commissioning.
Students, engineers prepare for Chicago Future City competition
The National Engineers Week event takes place Jan. 26 at the University of Illinois-Chicago. View a video of another Future City competition.
CSE 2008 Editorial Advisory Board
Consulting-Specifying Engineer is proud to present its rejuvenated 2008 Editorial Advisory Board.
Proactive energy bill approved
President Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 into law Dec.19. The act has several sections: • It phases out the use of inefficient incandescent lights and imposes improved energy efficiency standards on a wide variety of products. According to the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, the new standards for light bulbs require them to use about 20% to ...
Commercial buildings toreceive energy boost
Key organizations have formed the Commercial Buildings Initiative (CBI) to examine how to transform commercial building energy use. The CBI is an alliance of industrial, academic, and governmental representatives who develop ways to deliver Zero Net Energy Commercial Buildings in a cost-effective and widespread manner.
M/E insider: recent new hires and promotions – 2007-12-27
News from Peter Basso, EwingCole, KJWW, and more.
President Bush signs energy bill
On Dec. 19, President Bush signed the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 after the U.S. House of Representatives adopted the bill by a large margin.
A trip to a greener Windy City leads through the city’s alleyways
The city of Chicago and the Chicago Dept. of Transportation (CDOT) will attempt to green an area of the city longer than the distance from Chicago to Las Vegas.
Flack + Kurtz acquires SEi Companies
Together, the firms employ more than 600. Financial terms were not disclosed.
A trip to a greener Windy City leads through the city’s alleyways
The city of Chicago and the Chicago Dept. of Transportation (CDOT) will attempt to green an area of the city longer than the distance from Chicago to Las Vegas. The development of the new Green Alley Project includes three main initiatives: the repaving of Chicago's 1,900 miles of alleyways with permeable pavement, the use of high albedo pavement in sidewalks, and the use of energy-efficient da...
Stocking stuffers for engineers
Every year around this time, I’m asked what I want for Christmas. And every year I say the same thing—nothing. I don’t need a thing, which translates to, “trust the Force.” I’m not one to hawk products, but in sympathy for people cursed with shopping for engineers, especially environmentally conscious ones, let me present a list of gifts for Christmas, Chanuk...
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issues final part of “Climate Change 2007” report
The UN Intergovermental Panel on Climate Change has issued its fourth and final assessment report as part of its "Climate Change 2007" survey.
HP acquires EYP Mission Critical Facilities
HP today announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire EYP Mission Critical Facilities Inc., a consulting company specializing in strategic technology planning, design, and operations support for large-scale data centers.
The Windy City green proposal
A civic task force convened by Chicago’s Mayor Richard Daley proposed the “Chicago Climate Action Plan.”
New products in the fire, life-safety and security industries.
Hazardous HVAC in industrial environments
Two criteria rise above others when designing for industrial environments: safety and functionality. In the industrial processes, materials being processed and applicable codes largely describe the design applications, but researching many variables related to hazardous materials and properly conceptualizing the project are fundamental for success.
10 Things to remember about radiant cooling systems
Here is my list of the 10 most important points to remember when specifying ceiling radiant cooling systems. Editor’s note: Geoff McDonell wrote the three-part series, “Selecting radiant ceiling cooling and heating systems,” appearing online at www.csemag.com in the “Green” community.
Swap out that bulb, America
The National Energy Star Change a Light Bus Tour has ended with 1 million pledges to change to energy-efficient bulbs.
M/E insider: recent new hires and promotions – 2007-10-25
BSA LifeStructures names changes to its staff, UTC Power acquires Dome-Tech Group, Opus Architects & Engineers promotes three to principals, and more.
Selecting radiant ceiling cooling and heating systems (part 1)
This three-part series provides an overview of the most commonly available and applied commercial building radiant cooling systems. There are also a wide variety of radiant “heating-only” devices that are available, such as low- and high-intensity fuel-fired infrared heaters and electric radiant heating panels and sheets, but the scope of this series is to examine active radiant cooling applications for commercial buildings.
SBIC call for entries
The Sustainable Buildings Industry Council announces a call for entries for the 2007 Beyond Green High Performance Building Awards.
Reduce data centers’ drain on energy–a history
While this information is still very fresh and many initiatives are still in the early stages of development, it is important to realize that the discussion on identifying and reducing energy use in data centers actually has roots dating back more than a decade.
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M/E Insider – 2007-10-11
Acquisitions, new hires, and other changes at the nation’s MEP engineering firms: Dewberry, RTKL, Newcomb & Boyd, and others.
Going Green in Data Centers
The August release of a study by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on data center energy efficiency adds fuel to the fire in the research and development of new ways to reduce energy use. The findings on the energy use of data centers, summarized at www.energystar.gov/datacenters, are staggering: Several organizations are working to reduce energy consumption in data centers.
A Capital Job on Engineered Building Systems
Residents of Utah's Wasatch Front, where the State Capitol Building proudly stands, have been warned that it's not if, but when, a major earthquake will strike. Taking heed, the state undertook a structural analysis of the building during the 1990s, and the findings didn't look so good: a moderate earthquake could cause potentially catastrophic damage and deaths.
Energy-efficient data centers are here to stay
The EPA’s July report to Congress on server and data center energy efficiency explains what it means to the data centers we’ve come to rely upon.
U.S. DOE joins The Green Grid
The DOE and The Green Grid signed a memorandum of understanding to promote energy efficiency in IT.
Latest edition of fire reference from U.S. Fire Administration
Gregory Cade, FEMA Assistant Administrator of the U.S. Fire Administration, announced the latest edition of “Fire in the United States”. The 14th edition covers the 10-year period from 1995-2004 and focuses on the national fire problem and provides an overview of the fire problem in structures, vehicles and other mobile properties.
Make-up air unit, data center cooling solution and pressure sensor.
New Power Technologies— But Same Old Transmission Problems
Alternative energy has become a growth industry, with announcements for new wind, solar and geothermal projects an almost daily event. But getting the clean electricity these facilities produce to market poses the same challenge faced by traditional power plants: gaining approval for new transmission lines.
Airborne Superbugs: Can Hospital-Acquired Infections Cause Community Epidemics?
Much attention has been focused recently on pathogenic microorganisms and the threat these microorganisms are to communities. Especially problematic are microorganisms that have developed resistance to antibiotic treatment and that have begun to spread beyond the bounds of hospital walls. The most dangerous are those that may spread by the airborne route, which include methicillin-resistant Stap...
The keys to marketing green building design
Jerry Yudelson, national faculty member for USGBC's LEED program, describes the seven keys to marketing sustainable design.
DOE launches initiative to decrease energy intensity by 30%
The TEAM Initiative aims to meet or exceed the goals already laid out by President Bush for increasing energy efficiency throughout the federal government. Experts predict that reducing energy intensity by 30% across the DOE complex will save approximately $90 million each year, after projects are paid for.
Public comment period open for LEED for High Performance Operations
U.S. Green Building Council invites the public to comment on the draft LEED for High Performance Operations v2008 Rating System. LEED for High Performance Operations is the outcome of a LEED for Existing Buildings revisions process. The public comment period will be open for 31 days, starting August 2 and continuing through September 2.
Bush to create advanced energy research agency
President Bush signed the America COMPETES Act Aug. 9 that may advance the government on cutting-edge renewable energy research, but it's unclear whether such an agency will receive any funding.
AEC CIOs Focus on Strategies to Improve Economic Productivity
Farkas Berkowitz & Company and Bentley Systems reported in June on the conclusions reached during their Sixth Annual "Harnessing Information Technology Workshop" held in Washington, D.C. Participants included 60 chief information officers (CIOs) from top design firms.
Firms Recruit Recent Grads in Effort to Overcome Staffing Challenge
Competition for talent in the AEC industry is fierce, prompting firms to aggressively recruit top grads, according to analysts at ZweigWhite. Today's students are fielding multiple offers, which include high salaries and large sign-on bonuses, before they even receive their degrees.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Issues Its Final Report on Server and Data Center Efficiency
The EPA issued its final report to Congress last week on Server and Data Center Energy Efficiency.
It’s official: Burj Dubai tallest
It was always known that the Burj Dubai skyscraper being built in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, would be the world's tallest, but developers have been keeping the final figure under wraps. The figures are finally in. The Burg Dubai has reached 1,680 ft., surpassing Taiwan's Taipei 101, which stands at 1,671 ft.
Giants stand tall
In comparing last year's CSE Giants Report with our 2007 ranking, two things are striking: First, combined total revenue for all of these 100 firms is a sizable chunk of the economy. Second, growth in revenue compared to the prior year attests to the strength of the AEC industry and the good health of MEP engineering.
Washington inspires eWeek
National Engineers Week, scheduled for Feb. 17 to Feb. 23 in Washington, D.C., traces its roots back to 1951. It was founded by the National Society of Professional Engineers and has grown to a coalition of more than 70 engineering societies and more than 50 major corporations and government agencies.
Electrical Design for Tall Buildings:
There has been a sharp increase in the development of extra tall buildings, usually multi-purpose and often consisting of a retail and/or entertainment podium and towers of commercial offices, hotels and residential facilities. A good example is the iconic Emirates Towers complex in Dubai, comprised of a below grade parking area, a retail podium and one tower of commercial office space.
Giant firms, tall buildings, high hopes
Since humans learned to place one stone upon another and construct buildings, the direction eliciting reverence, ego and awe has been up, not out. The design and construction of tall buildings has taken an upswing, so to speak, with the incomplete Burj Dubai already being the world’s tallest building and projects started or on the boards for the 150-story Chicago Spire, the 1,776-ft.
Energy forum: wide range of views
This year's 18th Annual Energy Efficiency Forum, in June at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C., co-sponsored by Johnson Controls, Milwaukee, and the U.S. Energy Assn., couldn't have been more timely. Major congressional hearings on energy convened the same day. And the forum followed immediately upon the G-8 Summit's discussions on climate change.
M/E Insider: Recent New Hires and Promotions – 2007-07-30
Shirin Mandegari and Laura L. Perisse have joined CDM’s Industrial Services Group, Cambridge, Mass. Mandegari, a 16-year veteran and former management consultant specialist based in Irvine, Calif., is responsible for the senior project management of CDM’s private-sector contracts.
ASHRAE Reviews BACnet Elevator Protocol
The proposal to ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 135-2004, “BACnet—A Data Communication Protocol for Building Automation and Control Networks,” was reviewed during ASHRAE’s 2007 Annual Meeting.
Lutron Offers Interactive Customer Design and Education Center
Lutron Electronics announces the expansion of its fourth Customer Experience and Education Centers with the opening of a facility in Irvine, Calif. Similar facilities exist in Sao Paolo, Brazil; Plantation, Fla.; and at the company’s world headquarters in Coopersburg, Pa.
RTKL Joins Arcadis
International consulting and engineering giant ARCADIS, Arnhem, The Netherlands, announced last week that it has acquired 100% of the shares of privately held, Baltimore-based RTKL Assocs. Inc.
Data Center Technology Past, Present and Future
After 42 years, Intel co-founder Gordon Moore's prediction that the number and speed of transistors on a microchip would double every one to two years is still going strong. Named Moore's Law, this 1965 forecast was expected to endure just a decade its author says, but historical cycles lengthened the grip of Moore's Law on technological innovation (see Figure 1).
San Diego’s CleanTECH
Mayor Jerry Sanders of San Diego in June announced the official formation of CleanTECH San Diego, a non-profit trade association that is intended to foster and build an energy and environmental technology cluster in the greater San Diego region. The organization will be incubated at CONNECT, a public benefits organization that promotes entrepreneurship in the San Diego region by supporting the ...
A few years back, it seemed that whenever engineering professionals talked about innovations in cabling, the topic was focused on new offerings in fire-rated cable, and on the newest UL-certified cable product for fire and life-safety systems: ceramified circuit integrity (CI) cable. Certainly, there continues to be advances in this area.
New Products for Power Quality and Reliability – 2007-06-25
Testing tools, surge suppression devices and lightning protection equipment
VaporLok and Wal-Mart Team Up to Help Consumers
On June 23 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. VaporLok Products LLC joins Wal-Mart answering one of consumers' questions: What to do with the burned out fluorescent lamps?
The Drive for Simplicity: Trends in Motor Drives
Progress in AC drive technology is said to be making life easier for facility operating staffs.
Vt., Conn. and Calif. Top Nation in Energy-Efficient Policies
The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) released a ranking of state-level energy efficiency policies, “The State Energy Efficiency Scorecard for 2006” on June 5. Each state and Washington, D.C. was graded on actions they have taken to adopt energy-efficient policies, programs and technologies.
Anniversary of Beverly Hills Supper Club Fire
Early Saturday night on May 28, 1977, a fire at the Beverly Hills Supper Club in Southgate, Ky. left 165 dead and 70 injured. The Memorial Day weekend fire, which occurred 30 years ago, is still one of the deadliest fires in the history of the United States.
A Tutorial on Low Profile Roof Exhaust Mixed-Flow Impeller Technology
Where limitations on building height influence the design of the ventilation system, HVAC system designers might consider mixed-flow impeller exhaust fans to meet height restrictions and enhance roofline aesthetics.
DNA of R&D Labs
Although the overall R&D facilities market is somewhat slowing down, a number of R&D markets remain hot and are driving a new generation of high-tech, energy-efficient, amenity-packed laboratories. Leading the R&D charge is biotech, nanotechnology, bio-fuels, bio-safety and alternative energy research.
Boiler recommendations, specifications
This month's panel discusses how manufacturers and designers can improve specifications on boilers, and how to increase boiler safety and efficiency. How can engineers right-size—not oversize—a boiler while also providing for flexibility for a client whose needs might grow in the future? Scruby: There are two ways.
U.S., China Collaborate on Clean Coal
Scientists from China met with their counterparts in the United States in April to advance the science needed to use coal—the No. 1 domestic energy resource for each country—cleanly and more economically. The U.S. Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, along with China's Dalian Institute of Chemical Physics and Institute of Coal Chemistry are establishing a new partnership called t...
ICC Adopts ASHRAE 62.1
Approval of ASHRAE's Standard 62.1 ventilation rate calculation procedure for the International Mechanical Code (IMC) in May marks a milestone for the high-profile mandatory-language standard after years of development aimed at code adoption. The International Code Council approved an ASHRAE proposal to incorporate the prescriptive ventilation rate procedure from ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 62.
Transfer of Power
The transfer switch allows multiple sources of power to supply a given load. While the transfer from one power source to another can be controlled manually or automatically, all transfer switches are built to certain code requirements for transferring loads. No matter what type of transfer switch is used, it is important that the electrical system designer understand the basics about these devi...
Greening of Corporate America
Findings from the newMcGraw-Hill Construction Report "Greening of Corporate America," say that profitability in America’s corporations correlate to green building principles and sustainability practices.
Optimizing Photovoltaic Design
Typical approaches to photovoltaic (PV) design often result in less-than-optimum energy production. This results in larger PV arrays than might be required—meaning greater cost to a building owner. Large arrays use greater amounts of material, which means increased fabrication efforts, higher transportation costs and more installation efforts. The challenge is to get by with fewer materials by designing a building and PV system in harmony with each other.
Chicago Exelon HQ Receives Platinum LEED Rating
The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) has awarded Exelon’s Chicago headquarters with LEED Platinum Commercial Interiors (CI) Certification. Exelon’s new building is the largest office space in the world to be LEED-CI certified at the platinum level.
SECA Fuel Cell Development Program Completes First Phase
Six industry teams participating in a U.S. Dept. of Energy program have successfully completed tests of the first solid oxide fuel cell prototypes that can be manufactured at costs approaching those of conventional stationary power-generation technology.
Clinton Retrofit Program to Promote Energy Efficiency
Former President Bill Clinton announced yesterday the creation of a global Energy Efficiency Building Retrofit Program, a project of the Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI). This program brings together four of the world’s largest energy service companies, five of the world’s largest banks and 16 of the world’s largest cities in a landmark program designed to reduce energy consumption in existing buildings.
New Products for Electrical Systems – 2007-05-15
Enhanced series relays from SEL, disconnect switches from Hubbell Wiring, cable solutions by Corning and wireless mesh photo sensor from Cooper Lighting.
Boulder Passes a Tax for Climate Action Plan
The city of Boulder, Colo., passed a city-wide referendum last November that establishes a charge on electricity users based on how much energy they use. The money will go to support Boulder's Climate Action Plan to reduce global warming pollution. The passage marked the first time in the nation that a municipal government will impose an energy tax on its residents to directly combat climate change.
New Products – 2007-05-01
Bypass packages are electronically controlled and feature automatic bypass, common start/stop in drive or bypass modes, and advanced override that performs in coordination with the drive and bypass for improved protection. All features are programmed through the drive keypad. The packages provide improved protection and operation through a bypass 24-volt DC switch-mode power supply.
The Keys to Marketing Green Building
Engineering firms are beginning to realize that the green building revolution is here to stay and that they should join in. In 2006, LEED-registered projects increased 50% over the previous year, and LEED-certified projects increased nearly 70%, which suggests that more firms are accumulating green building expertise with each passing year.
Talkin’ NEC 708
One out of every six dollars spent on power system equipment is spent on alternate power systems that back up primary systems.¹ To what degree does spending on alternate systems take from the investment needed to increase the security of the primary power system? Conversely, to what degree can investment in the alternate systems increase the security of the primary system? Power security i...
AIA Announces Top 10 Green Projects
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) and its Committee on the Environment (COTE) have selected the top 10 examples of sustainable architecture and green design that protect and enhance the environment. The projects will be honored May 3 at the AIA 2007 National Convention and Design Expo in San Antonio.
Metering Accuracy is Critical to the Success of Toronto’s Innovative Deep Lake Water Cooling
The city of Toronto has capitalized on a valuable asset lying 272 feet below the surface of Lake Ontario — icy cold water that remains at a constant 39.2 degrees Fahrenheit all year round.Since August 2004, this previously-untapped resource has been supplying economical and environmentally-friendly air conditioning to large buildings in the city’s downtown. The Deep Lake Water Cooling (DLWC) system in Toronto is the world’s largest.The city is an ideal location for this innovative technology, because a deep body of water is situated near the dense, urban center.The DLWC system is operated by Enwave Energy Corporation, a private corporation co-owned by the City of Toronto and the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System (OMERS) that provides heating and/or cooling services to over 140 institutional and commercial buildings in downtown Toronto. The DLWC process is not complicated.A heat exchange system at the City's John Street Pumping Station transfers cold energy from the lake water to a separate, closed water loop that distributes cooling energy to Enwave’s customers.The closed water loop circulates in an underground piping distribution network, providing air conditioning to the Metro Toronto Convention Centre and to skyscrapers and other major buildings.The DLWC system has enough capacity to air condition 100 office buildings or 34 million square feet of building space. After the lake water passes through the heat exchange process, it is fed into the city’s potable water system, avoiding the potential negative environmental impact of discharging the warmed water back into the lake.A single source of water provides cooling for Enwave's DLWC system and drinking water for the city. The environmental benefits of DLWC are dramatic.DLWC consumes only one-tenth the electricity compared to conventional chillers.The lake water system thereby eliminates 61 megawatts of electricity demand from Ontario’s electricity grid, during peak usage periods — equivalent to the electricity required to air condition 6,800 homes.The reduced electricity consumption annually removes 79,000 tons of carbon dioxide from the air, an amount equivalent to taking 15,800 cars off the road.The DLWC system not only reduces these greenhouse gases, but it also eliminates the use of large quantities of ozone-depleting refrigerants. Enwave’s customers benefit from the availability of smart energy that is sustainable, clean and renewable, without having to pay premium prices.Moreover, DLWC, like other green projects, involves high capital expenditures and low operating costs.Therefore, Enwave is able to offer price stability, an important advantage in an era of rising and unpredictable energy costs. Centralized production of cooling energy is more cost-effective, reliable and convenient, than distributed building-specific cooling, because it removes the need to acquire, service and maintain cooling equipment in each building. The noise, vibration and structure-born sounds of cooling equipment are eliminated. The space typically reserved for cooling equipment is freed for other purposes, and the coolers visible on roofs and walls are no longer needed. “We are changing the paradigm of how buildings provide air conditioning,” explains Steve Perkins, Enwave’s Vice President of Engineering.“Instead of buying electricity to power their own cooling system, our customers now outsource the process to our district cooling operation.They receive cooling energy in the form of cold water and they need only distribute that cooling energy within their building.” Enwave bills each customer by calculating energy consumed, based on the water flow and the temperature differential between the customer’s supply and return lines.“Our customers are used to the model of buying precisely-metered electricity, and it is critical that we provide excellent metering accuracy,” says Perkins.“Some of our cooling customers are buying hundreds of thousands, or millions, of dollars in cooling each year.” For metering systems, Enwave has turned to SRB Controls Inc., of Markham, Ontario, which recommended the IFS 4000 KC Enviromag electromagnetic flowmeter (EMF), ranging in diameter from 3 inches to 20 inches, from KROHNE, Inc.
Transfer Switches Exceed Seismic Requirements
Independent tests show that transfer switches from ASCO , Florham Park, N.J., exceed the International Building Code requirement by operating during a simulated severe seismic event. The significance of this test is that the requirement only requires the transfer switch to operate before and after an event. IBC 2003 certification for severe seismic events is critical for states such as California, Washington, Nevada, Idaho and Colorado. ASCO had its transfer switches tested because IBC requirements now demand that transfer switches be subjected to simulated seismic events, rather than an engineering analysis.
CSE Green Scene Monthly Newsletter Launched on May 23, 2007! Click here to register CSE Green Scene offers updates on the latest in green building technology, applications, case studies, product releases, new literature announcements, commentary, and events. Welcome to the premiere issue of CSE Green Scene . As a subscriber to Consulting Specifying Engineer magazine or e-newsletter, we would like to provide you with a free monthly subscription. For customer support or to stop receiving this newsletter or future newsletter offers from CSE, please scroll to the bottom for instructions. HomeAbout CSEAdvertise with CSE May 2007 This Issue's News Stories 1.
Fire, Security and Life Safety Products
IP communicator for fire alarm panels transmits information generated by a fire alarm panel to a central station via the Internet. The communication uses any Ethernet connection or is compatible with existing customer-provided networks to achieve faster central station connections. The communication does not require a public IP address and is programmed to use either static IP or DHCP client for automatic IP address configuration.
New Products – 2007-04-01
Busway provides modular, overhead, build-as-you-go. It supplies more power to larger machine tools such as welders, soldering equipment, heaters and chillers. Installed above computer cabinets, the busway eliminates the need for costly raised floors. It also makes air handling for cooling systems more effective by eliminating under-floor cable whips.
Commissioning and the Engineer
The commissioning process can be an important element in the success of a building program, especially one that involves complicated mechanical and electrical systems such as those found in laboratories, hospitals and pharmaceutical facilities. The movers, shakers and rainmakers of firms that provide commissioning services will spend a great deal of time and energy targeting the decision makers...
Reclaimed Water and the Codes
While it is recognized that potable water is an increasingly fragile resource in the United States, the issues of water-conservative fixtures, rainwater harvesting, water recycling and reclamation are only just starting to be addressed by codes and regulations. The recent surge in green building is bringing the issues into focus as plumbing engineers and building and code officials attempt to i...
The Evolution of U.S. Fire Alarm Systems
Fire alarm systems have been an integral part of society since the late 1800s. The goal of fire alarm systems has remained consistent throughout history: Reduce the loss of life and limit property losses from fire. The fire alarm industry has evolved through time to ensure that these objectives are met.
M/E Insider: Recent New Hires and Promotions – 2007-03-22
Kim Sousa was named marketing director at RDK , Andover, Mass. She will develop and execute strategic plans and oversee the firm’s marketing efforts in three offices—Andover, Boston and New Brunswick, N.J. Sousa is the chair of the Marketing/PR Committee of the American Council of Engineering Companies of Massachusetts, and is a member and past preside of the Boston Chapter of the Society of Marketing Professional Services. BSA LifeStructures , Indianapolis, named Kalevi Huotilainen and John Sauer, LEED AP, senior vice presidents.
Industry Roundup: News from Industry Suppliers
Bristol Compressors, Bristol, Va., is being acquired by New York-based KPS Capital Partners LP from Milwaukee-based Johnson Controls Inc. E-Mon , Langhorne, Pa., maker of electric submetering equipment, announced its sale by Hunt Power, L.P. to the E-Mon management team backed by private equity investor Branford Castle, Inc.
Legislation to Repeal Withholding on Government Contracts Introduced
Legislation to repeal a tax withholding requirement for all government contracts and payments was introduced in the House this week by Congressmen Kendrick Meek (D-FL) and Wally Herger (R-CA). The Meek/Herger bill (H.R. 1023) would repeal Section 511 of the Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act of 2005, which is a sweeping new requirement mandating that federal, state and local governments that spend $100 million or more annually withhold 3% from payments for goods and services. The withholding mandate is scheduled to take effect in 2011 and covers all government contracts as well as any payment to any person for a service or product provided to a government entity. The legislation is supported by the American Council of Engineering Companies, Washington, D.C., among other associations. "This is one of the most inherently unfair pieces of legislation to come along and we will aggressively fight to see that it is killed," said ACEC President Dave Raymond. ACEC is working with a broad coalition and actively lobbying Congress to pass the bill. Passage of this legislation will also be a major goal for ACEC's "citizen lobbyists" during its annual convention, which takes place May 6-9 in Washington, D.C., To view ACEC's endorsement letter to Congressman Meek, click here .
A Sprinkling of Expertise
This month's panel of fire protection experts hash out the advantages and disadvantages of steel, copper and CPVC sprinkler systems. CSE: What are the main advantages and disadvantages of copper, steel and chlorinated polyvinyl chloride (CPVC) sprinkler piping materials? SCHULTZ: Steel is the oldest, most common pipe in use.
Case Study: Salisbury House
The Salisbury House, an architectural gem in Des Moines, Iowa, is home to original manuscripts of some of history’s most enduring names including Abraham Lincoln and Queen Elizabeth I, as well as first edition prints of the King James Bible and works by Ernest Hemingway and D.H. Lawrence. The Salisbury House was built in 1923-1928 by financier Carl Weeks and modeled after King George V’s house in Salisbury, England. Over the course of five years, architects and engineers from all over the United Sates were hired to painstakingly recreate every feature of the Tudor-style mansion.
Data Center Power Consumption Has Doubled in Five Years
In a keynote address at the LinuxWorld OpenSolutions Summit in New York on Feb. 15, Randy Allen, corporate vice president, server and workstation division, AMD, Sunnyvale, Calif., revealed findings from a study that comprehensively calculated, for the first time, the energy consumed by national and global data centers annually. Addressing the need for thorough, credible estimates on data center power use, the study found that in 2005, in the United States alone, data centers and their associated infrastructures consumed five million kW of energy, the equivalent of five 1,000 MW power plants. Instituting an annual report on energy efficiency in U.S. data centers to measure progress and determine new opportunities and challenges; Developing a mechanism to enable businesses, large and small, to measure their own data center efficiency; and Increasing alignment between government and vendor-neutral industry groups to foster the development of energy-efficient data centers for the future. "The Environmental Protection Agency applauds AMD and this latest benchmarking effort to better understand the global impact data centers have on energy consumption," said Andrew Fanara, team leader, U.S.
Survey of New York Engineers Reports Future of Consulting Engineering
A survey of member firms conducted by the American Council of Engineering Companies of New York has revealed the direction, trends and challenges the state’s consulting engineering industry expects to face over the next several years. A total of 175 firms participated in the study, 97% of which are headquartered in the state of New York. “Our organization decided it was critical to conduct the survey in order to chart the course of the consulting engineering industry in the state for the next decade and beyond. The results will help us to focus our efforts and resources,” said Jay Simson, ACEC New York’s Executive Director. Management of 64% of these firms expected the industry to grow over the next decade, but was less optimistic—at 57%—for growth over the next 20 years.
Executive Order Tasks Federal Agencies with Reducing Environmental Impact
President George W. Bush released an executive order last month calling on the head of each federal agency to reduce "energy intensity" (energy consumption per sq. ft.
Liquid Cooling Guidelines Discuss IT Heat Load Solutions
Heat loads generated by IT equipment can present significant problems for data centers by introducing effects such as decreased equipment availability, wasted floor space and inefficient cooling system operation. One solution, liquid cooling, is described in detail in ASHRAE’s new publication, “Liquid Cooling Guidelines for Datacom Equipment Centers.” The guide covers a broad range of liquid cooling topics such as facility cooling systems, facility piping design, liquid cooling implementation for datacom equipment, liquid cooling infrastructure requirements for chilled water systems, and liquid cooling infrastructure requirements for technology cooling systems. The book is the fourth in a series written by ASHRAE Technical Committee 9.9, Mission Control Facilities, Technology Spaces and Electronic Equipment. “The book incorporates the experience of liquid cooling from the mainframe days,” said Roger Schmidt of IBM and chair of TC 9.9. “Liquid cooling is a proven technology, and the book provides a good central source of liquid cooling information from the datacom equipment to the facility level.” For more about “Liquid Cooling Guidelines for Datacom Equipment Centers,” visit the Bookstore at www.ashrae.org .
China, U.S. Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Industry Groups Sign MOU
A memorandum of understanding to strengthen intellectual property rights (IPR) protection was signed between the major U.S. and Chinese air conditioning and refrigeration industry organizations during the AHR Expo held in Dallas last week. The exhibition companies of the largest U.S.
Middle East Mania
For now, the Persian Gulf states' coffers are overflowing with oil money. But some of these powerhouses—in particular, the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Bahrain—are planning for a future not depended on oil revenue. There are unprecedented building and construction programs to improve and expand the region's infrastructure.
Fire Protection in the Persian Gulf Region
Is developing business in the Middle East a long-term effort? And how exactly does a U.S. engineering firm succeed in breaking into this market? The answer to the first question is a simple yes. How a firm goes about establishing a foothold in the Mideast market requires a much longer answer. One must invest in this new market.
M/E Insider: Recent New Hires and Promotions – 2007-01-25
Syska Hennessy Group , Los Angeles, named Ann Banning-Wright, LEED AP , managing director of its Los Angeles office. In her new position, she will oversee more than 160 employees. Banning-Wright also serves as the firm’s chief strategy officer, and serves as a member of Syska Hennessy’s Management Advisory Council.
Nonresidential Construction Growth Continues in 2007
Construction will experience healthful economic conditions in 2007, with nonresidential construction supporting its growth. Spending on nonresidential construction expanded at a 16% annual rate, during the year ended September. Since then, growth has slowed to 11% to 12% and will slow to 8% by the end of 2007, Reed Construction Data (RCD) reported. The slowdown is expected to occur because of the plunge in residential building last year and the decrease in overall economic growth from 3.5% to 4%, to 2.5% to 3%. Reed Construction Data also detailed growth in specific areas.
ZweigWhite Report Details 2007 Industry Outlook for Design and Construction Firms
Health care, higher education and water/wastewater are expected to be the largest markets for design and construction firms this year, according to the The report also said that parks, recreation, government and financial markets are expected to struggle. In recent years, the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) business has outperformed the U.S. economy, and 55% of the firm leaders surveyed in conjunction with the report said they are optimistic about the industry’s performance heading into 2007 and expect AEC to outperform the U.S.
The 2007 Industry Outlook for Design and Construction Firms
Health care, higher education and water/wastewater will be among the hottest markets for design and construction firms in 2007, while the parks and recreation, government and financial markets are expected to struggle, according to the 2007 AEC Industry Outlook: Strategy and Insight for Design & Construction Firms, a new report from Natick, Mass.-based A/E/C consultants ZweigWhite. The architecture, engineering and construction business has outperformed the U.S. economy as a whole in recent years, and the majority of firm leaders surveyed in conjunction with the report remain optimistic about the industry's performance heading into 2007. The survey found that 55% of respondents expect the A/E/C industry will outperform the U.S.
A/E/C White Paper Surveys Industry Initiatives for Greater Efficiencies
Dec. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- A new survey of leading architecture, engineering and construction (A/E/C) executives has found that 10 of 11 firms are pursuing software initiatives to raise process productivity without disruptive re-engineering of their work practices. The research is available in a new white paper, Improving AEC Project Execution: Lessons from 11 Industry Leaders. Newforma, Inc., a New Hampshire-based software developer, commissioned Spar Point Research of Danvers, Mass., to interview North American A/E/C executives in five market segments: architecture, building engineering, civil engineering, design-build and transportation infrastructure.
New Products for Electrical Systems – 2006-12-19
Two-compartment recessed floor boxes provide power and communications services in open spaces or directly to a workstation as a furniture feed box. The floor box can be installed in either concrete or wood floors. A lightweight slab-on-grade version features a fusion-bonded epoxy finish that is applied to the standard steel box, which eliminates the need for a costlier cast iron box.
M/E Engineering Group Works with ASHRAE to Further Advocacy, Education
The Atlanta-based American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) has signed a memorandum of understanding with the Council of American Mechanical and Electrical Engineers (CAMEE). The agreement formalizes a working relationship between ASHRAE, which is interested in the technical aspects of the building environment, and CAMEE, which is focused on the business aspects of mechanical and electrical engineering. CAMEE, a coalition within the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC), was formed to provide up-to-date information to its M/E/P engineering member firms on new concepts such as green buildings techniques and the new building information modeling (BIM) system—innovations that advance design capability, but also carry potential liability. “The agreement serves to bridge a gap between ASHRAE and CAMEE and their common interests in government advocacy on behalf of our members and education for the operation of engineering businesses,” said Terry Townsend, P.E., ASHRAE president. “ASHRAE and CAMEE can now market our activities to the mutual benefit of our collective memberships.” “We look forward to our cooperation with ASHRAE and the benefits that will accrue to both organizations,” said David Raymond, president of ACEC.
Performance Contracting Pays Off for Kentucky with Big Energy Savings
In Feb. 2005, Governor Ernie Fletcher announced the Commonwealth of Kentucky’s first comprehensive energy strategy. Fletcher said the plan reflects the state’s commitment to three primary principles: maintaining Kentucky’s low cost of energy; responsibly developing the state’s energy resources; and preserving Kentucky’s commitment to the environment. “As we implement our comprehensive energy plan, which includes greater use of clean-coal technology, bio-fuels and energy efficiency, Kentucky will be well-positioned to continue to lead the nation,” Fletcher said.
Green News Aplenty
This year's recent Green Build Conference in Denver proved a major success with more than 13,500 attendees and over 700 exhibitors. Officials for the U.S. Green Building Council expect almost double the numbers for next year's conference in Los Angeles. “We're expecting next year to be the Green Build conference's biggest year yet and LA is the perfect place for it,” said Peter Temp...
Australia Has Mega Solar Power Plant Project in the Works
Australian officials say that they intend to build the world's largest solar power plant. With warnings of blackouts within five years unless it can increase electricity generation, and extended severe drought eating into economic growth and water availability, the Australian government has begun very active support for alternative forms of energy. Demand for power in Australia's most populous state, New South Wales, is predicted to outstrip supply by 2010 or 2011. The smaller states of Victoria, South Australia and Queensland could experience power blackouts much earlier, starting from 2008, said the National Electricity Market Management Company. The new solar concentrator, with a capacity of 154 megawatts, would be built in Victoria state, and would reach full capacity by 2013, according to Peter Costello, "The project aims to build the biggest photovoltaic project in the world and this is by using mirrors which concentrate the sun's rays on a power plant," Costello said.
Industry Roundup: M/E/P Vendors Garner Many Awards
Cleaver-Brooks announced that its Stratford, Ontario facility has won the 2005 GAMA Hydronics Institute Plant Safety Award at the institute’s recent HI Division Semi-Annual Meeting. Cummins Power Generation, Minneapolis, has received the 2006 North American Diesel Engine Technology Leadership of the Year Award from Frost & Sullivan. Ferraz Shawmut, Newburyport, Mass., was honored by the IMARK Group at the 2006 IMARK Distinguished Performance Awards for top honors in “Sales Leadership.” Prolec-GE, a joint venture between Atlanta-based GE Energy and Xignux, Monterrey, Mexico, recently received a “Recognition for Environmental Excellence 2005” award from Mexico’s federal government and the Federal Ministry for Environmental Protection, Procuraduría Federal de Protección al Ambiente (PROFEPA). Johnson Controls, Inc., Milwaukee, has announced that the American Diabetes Assn. recognized John M. Barth, JCI’s chairman and chief executive officer, as the Corporate Honoree of Diversity at its 2006 Live the Good Life Gala on Oct.
Poor Cash Flow Can Affect an A/E Firm’s Value
Poor cash flow directly impacts the value of a firm, more so than profits. Understanding the difference between profits and cash flow is the first step to strong financial management, according to consultants at Natick, Mass.-based ZweigWhite. "Growing companies, even profitable ones, often experience financial pains. I've heard of successful companies growing themselves out of business because of liquidity issues," says David Rabinovitz, a ZweigWhite associate who specializes in financial advisory services.
Is a Muddier Shade of Green OK? I Think So
Let’s plant a billion new trees... Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) ranks some sports cars greener than current hybrids... both headlines I ripped out of my local paper on the same day earlier this month, and I think they say something about efforts toward sustainability. The first was a quote from the latest Nobel peace prize winner Wangari Maathai who suggested the tree planting underta...
Advocating & Protecting Art and Science
Maybe the last decade's dot-com billionaires are now reaching their prime philanthropic years, or perhaps a number of lucky curators simply hit the lottery. Whatever the reason, cultural-facility construction in the U.S. is currently going through a boom of sorts. In planning this new generation of museums and science centers—including mammoth aquariums—designers are recognizing th...
The Power of Independence
Several technical and economic advantages argue in favor of both distributed generation and alternative power—but there are also disadvantages that hinder development. CSE: Right off the bat, what are the biggest obstacles to implementing distributed generation (DG) and alternative power solutions? DAUFFENBACH: Justifying capital cost to install, operate and maintain the equipment, becaus...
Kentucky Adopts Latest Uniform Fire Code and Life Safety Code
The state of Kentucky has adopted the most recent editions of NFPA 1, Uniform Fire Code and NFPA 101, Life Safety Code . The adoptions became effective in September. “The adoption of NFPA 1 , NFPA 101 and other key NFPA codes and standards provides the most comprehensive set of safety tools that the enforcement community and building owners can have,” said Rodney Raby, Kentucky’s state fire marshal. “This adoption is just one more example of Kentucky’s ongoing commitment to providing the highest level of protection for those living in and visiting the Commonwealth.” Recognized worldwide and adopted statewide in 19 states, NFPA 1 provides requirements necessary to establish a reasonable level of fire safety and property protection from hazards created by fire and explosion.
Let's face it, we live in a throwaway culture, and buildings are no exception. Too often, historically and architecturally significant edifices are bulldozed to make way for brand new buildings with modern bells and whistles. And for many owners and developers, “historic building” means “leaky plumbing,” “too drafty” or “structurally unsound.” And in some cases, they're right. But some buildings are simply too precious not to keep around, and when it comes time to renovate, building teams are challenged not only with maintaining historical significance, but also with addressing the issues of occupant comfort, energy efficiency, modern communications and increased electrical needs.
Using Water Wisely
The “green” revolution has gradually evolved from niche to mainstream and continually surfaces in our everyday lives. Whether it's eco-friendly cars or products/building materials for a more sustainable home, consumers increasingly understand that being green not only benefits the environment, but also benefits them and their children in the long run. For instance, water conservation is a resonating issue today and not just in areas typically affected, such as Arizona or California. Everyone must conserve water, and this message is clear to consumers.
Mechanics of Water Conservation
Water today has become a hot topic among those trying to reduce their impact on our precious environment. And as water and sewer rates climb rapidly, water consumption has also become an important subject when considering how to reduce costs and impact to the bottom line. Most commercial buildings are typically large consumers of water, and frankly, the largest percentage of their indoor water use passes through their toilets.
M/E Insider: Joint Ventures, Awards and More
• Global design firm HOK has entered into a strategic alliance with Advanced Environmental , a specialist environmental division of Australia-based Lincolne Scott Consulting Engineers , to advance sustainable design expertise and innovation in commercial building projects throughout the U.S. • SSRCx, LLC , a total-facility commissioning provider, has formed a joint venture with Chicago-based engineering firm Cotter Consulting, Inc. to establish a presence in Chicago and the Midwest. The two firms were recently awarded their first project together; they will provide commissioning services for the University Technology Park/Chemical Research Building, a $58 million research lab at the Illinois Institute of Technology. • Smith Seckman Reid, Inc.
California Adopts IAPMO Codes; IAPMO Releases 2006 Version of Two Codes
The state of California plans to adopt the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials’ (IAPMO) 2006 Uniform Plumbing Code (UPC) and 2006 Uniform Mechanical Code (UMC). Government subcommittees are currently drafting state-specific amendments to the codes and preparing to present the recommended changes at forthcoming public hearings. The proposed codes will be identified as the 2007 California Plumbing Code (CPC) and 2007 California Mechanical Code (CMC) and are expected to go into effect January 1, 2008. Dwight Perkins, IAPMO’s western regional manager, was enthusiastic about the imminent code adoptions.
Federal Government’s Official Business Site Re-Launches in October
For the first time, small business owners can go to one website to find federal compliance information. Business.gov , the official business link to the U.S. government, is re-launching on October 2 to focus on compliance information, federal forms and agency compliance contacts across multiple federal agencies.
Heat Pump Reduces Hospital’s Steam Bill By $8,000 Per Day
Like medical centers everywhere, St. Michael’s Hospital in Toronto, Canada, is under budget constraints and constantly seeking ways to pare down operating expenses. The facility’s managers have discovered that energy efficiency can make a tremendous difference in their bottom line. This 550-bed acute-care, teaching and research hospital, which has served the residents of Toronto since 1892, found a way to save Can$1.4 million annually through a major heating and cooling system retrofit.
Although some local markets are hotter than others, nationwide, the K-12 market is going strong both for new construction and renovation. As one might expect, K-12 building activity is strongest in the Sun Belt and parts of the West, where the “parent population”—25- to 55-year-olds—is expanding the fastest. “We've been extremely active with education work in Florida with such a large influx of people,” says Matt Wiechart, P.E., principal with TLC Engineering for Architecture's Ft. Myers office. But demographics isn't the only force affecting this market.
Crockett Clan a School Market Microcosm
A recent radio advertisement told me I'd be 58 when my youngest graduates college, and by gum, they're right (well, pretty close at least). They also told me I'd better be planning now for his collegiate career. These words ring true on many levels, not only for students and their parents, but also for the people who commission, design and operate school buildings.
It’s no surprise that reliability, energy efficiency and high density are dominating discussions about data centers. High-density server facilities have quickly become a widespread reality. Not only are they adding nearly 1 GW of power demand to the U.S.
Superdome Ready for Some Football
A year after Hurricane Katrina devastated portions of the Gulf Coast, perhaps the most publicized building in the days following the storm—the Louisiana Superdome in New Orleans—is back in business. Design firm Ellerbe Becket's Kansas City office played a key role in making this happen. The firm had been working with the Superdome's owner, the Louisiana Stadium Exhibition District, since 2001 to upgrade the building—home of the New Orleans Saints—to maintain it at a competitive level with other NFL facilities. Immediately following Katrina, Ellerbe Becket was contacted to perform a damage assessment, as the Superdome's management wanted the facility back in operation as soon as possible. The NFL indicated it would aid with the building's recovery on the condition that it be fully operational for the Saints' first home game of the 2006 season on Sept. 25.
More Efficient Heat Recovery
With today’s ever-increasing energy costs, it is as important as ever to design HVAC systems that minimize energy use. Given the high ventilation requirements of many applications, engineers must design cost-effective heat-recovery systems. Air-to-air heat exchanger systems require the air distribution ductwork for the two airstreams to be in close proximity. However, many times it is impractical to configure ductwork to use this approach. Run-around hydronic loop systems allow for heat recovery from a system where the airstreams are not in close proximity.
Click Here to View Upcoming Webcasts Critical Power University On-Demand Webcasts: Standby Power Systems for Hospitals: The Debate: Is Paralleling Generators a Good Idea? Original Air Date: May 14, 2009 The primary goal of an emergency power system for a hospital is the reliability of the power source of adequate capacity to serve the Priority 1, 2, and 3 loads. In the event of a failure of one of the generators, the priority 1 and 2 loads should be powered (as a minimum). There are two ways to achieve this reliability and capacity: A) Provide a paralleling, emergency system with N+1 generators such that the N generators will serve the entire load without exceeding 80% of their individual unit rating. Or, B) Provide a system of generators and transfer switches so that the each generator serves a dedicated load (that does not exceed 80% of any unit rating) and the load of any generator can be transferred to another generator or generators to maintain power reliability. For the paralleling system the pros are:Traditional system configuration, true N+1 configuration, and the cons are: higher cost, large space requirements, and single-point-failure mode in the paralleling cabinet. For the multiple generator system the pros are:Smaller footprint, reduced cost, no single point failure modes, and the cons are: the configuration requires that two transfer switches be placed in series at some point in the system. Which is the better approach? View the Webcast and judge for yourself. Arguing for paralleling generators is Tom Divine, PE, Project Manager and Electrical Engineer, Smith Seckman Reid, Inc. (SSR), Houston. Arguing against paralleling generators is Kenneth Lovorn, PE, President and Chief Engineer, Lovorn Engineering Associates, Pittsburgh. All CPU Webcasts are FREE and continuing education credits are available.
Power Upgrade for a Sports Park
What do the Rolling Stones, Edmonton Oilers, championship rodeo and thoroughbred racing have in common? They are just a few of the attractions that take place at Northlands Park in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. And because Northlands Park is such an eventful place, upgrading the electrical power infrastructure required a complex orchestration of power scheme and backup design, simulation, installation and testing--all coordinated to accommodate a long-term development plan without interrupting a brisk schedule of events. “There were two major challenges involved with this project,” said Clive Collar, power systems specialist and project manager. “First of all, we’re using existing, old-technology [electro-mechanical] gear in the process of upgrading a system with state-of-the-art technologies, including relays and communications processors. Secondly, we have to plan installation so as to not interfere with the schedule of events at busy facilities such as Rexall Placeo--over a two- to five-year period.” The power system upgrades comprised the first two phases of a five-stage, ten-year development plan prepared by Collar.
DuPont Launches New Clean Agent Fire Extinguishant Website
DuPont Fire Extinguishants recently announced the launch of a new website, designed to provide visitors with critical new product and technical information about DuPont’s portfolio of FE clean agent fire extinguishants. The new website is accessible at www.cleanagents.dupont.com . In addition to state-of-the-art functionality and improved navigation, DuPont has added a “Uses and Applications” section, designed to help current and potential customers understand how the range of FE clean agent extinguishants addresses diverse fire protection needs across a number of industries, including: emergency response, motor sports, aerospace, semiconductor manufacturing, telecommunications, marine/boating, facility management, transportation and the arts, specifically museums and libraries. The new site also offers a look into the Science of Protection, which explains the DuPont commitment to protecting the things that matter most through the development of clean agent extinguishants that are safer for use around equipment, people and the environment. • Extensive clean agent fire extinguishant product information• An enhanced press room• Environmental and regulatory information;• Updated technical training materials.
ThamesValley Police Custody Suites Select Zandar MultiViewers
Zandar Technologies has provided its 1RU FusionPro MultiViewers to Thames Valley Police, to create what are accepted to be the most technically sophisticated custody suites in the United Kingdom. This large partnership project was carried out for the Custody Refurbishment Programme worth approximately “The recognized increase in incidents of near misses and death in custody were a driving force behind this project. Other critical factors included an increase in accountability, rising staffing costs as well as the operational aspects of clutter in an operator’s space (alarms, cell calls, intercoms and CCTV systems). The police wanted a system that utilized space and to visually alleviate these challenges,” explained Stephen Smith, sales and marketing director at Integrated Security Manufacturing (ISM). Five out of 12 custody suites have so far been completed at Thames Valley Police and a Zandar 1RU FusionPro MultiViewer is allocated to each suite.
BIM: Contractural Risks are Changing with Technology
Owners are demanding that complex projects be completed more quickly and cheaply. These demands, plus a desire to avoid claims, have led designers to think beyond two-dimensional blueprints and to develop three-dimensional building information modeling (BIM). The concept is relatively simple, yet revolutionary. The theory is that if every piece of data required to design and construct a project were entered and developed within a single online system, you could construct the project in the virtual world first.
Intelligent Buildings: Why is it Taking So Long?
Realcomm, a San Diego-based organization dedicated to improving the management and use of commercial real estate, recently released the results of a study conducted in conjunction with i & i limited, a U.K.-based research firm, examining the state of building intelligence in North America. The study, dubbed “IT-Convergence in Buildings,” is based on the experience and opinions, collected through face-to-face interviews, of some of the largest building owners across the United States. According to i & i limited's James McHale, there are three main reasons why it is taking so long for intelligent buildings to come of age: First, building automation system suppliers have all too often failed to prove the business case to the satisfaction of the building owner. They have failed, he said, to benchmark against the value propositions set by the owner and in some cases have not even considered them. Second, McHale said, vendors have failed to convince their buyers that their solutions are based on proven technology and that they are low-risk, delivered by partnerships with all the relevant skills.
Security Tech Innovations are Radical
Just a month ago a fairly significant anniversary passed without much ado. The specific date was July 7—the one-year anniversary of the London subway bombings. At the time, the event, just after London was named host of the 2012 summer Olympic Games, brought back many of the same insecurities people experienced after 9/11. But while the anniversary passed under the radar of the average American, it didn't mean those in the security industry weren't paying attention.
Industry Roundup: APC Offers New Course; BAC, Daikin ABB, MTU Detroit Diesel and Others Announce Promotions
• American Power Conversion, West Kingston, R.I., has a new set of courses and educational partners for its online DataCenterUniversity by APC program. • Baltimore Air Coil, Baltimore, has named William O. (Bill) Rector as V.P of Engineering. Mr.
M/E Insider: Stanley Consultants, SSOE Open New Offices
• Stanley Consultants has opened a new office in Baton Rouge, La., which provides engineering, environmental and construction management services to federal, state and municipal clients in the transportation, water resources and water/wastewater markets. Brant B. Richard, P.E.
Data Center Market Sustainable
For those involved with the design and construction of data centers, it's good news all around. Leading experts report no foreseeable end to the need to build and upgrade these critical facilities. Speaking at a supply chain event in Nashville, sponsored by Turner Logistics, key executives from EYP Mission Critical Facilities, one of the nation's top data center design firms, addressed key trends in this market sector. According to Rick Einhorn, the firm's chief marketing officer, advances in distributed computing and a potential lack of proper facilities to house this increasingly sophisticated—and power-consuming/heat-generating—equipment will continue to drive the market for at least the next three years. "At least 18 of the top 20 financial institutions are in some kind of build-out right now," said Einhorn. And it's not just banks: Hospitals, big box retailers, the government, universities, Internet companies, telecom, pharma, oil services and even broadcast companies are all building data centers.
A Balanced Mix
Where can you put in a few hours at the office, meet some friends at the corner cafe, pop in to shop at a clothing boutique, pick up your dry cleaning, catch the latest movie and then retire for the night in your condo—all without leaving the neighborhood? The answer can be found in just about any major American city these days, where one finds plenty of mixed-use developments that combine residential, retail, office and hospitality venues for occupants to live, work and play—all in one place. After all, who wouldn't want to eliminate a long commute to work? "Employees are increasingly demanding places near their work where they can live, shop and relax. Seeking a better quality of life, they want to spend more time with their families and friends, and less time commuting," explains St. Petersburg, Fla.
New Products – 2006-07-01
Stainless steel motors are available in 0.5-hp through 10-hp models. In addition to stainless steel housing, features include a conduit box welded to the motor, conduit box cover, shaft, base, fan cover and slinger. The motors are impervious to rust and deterioration caused by frequent high-pressure caustic sanitizing.
Demystifying Marketing or What Makes it Work?
A company is lucky if there’s someone around who’s not afraid to poke holes in its “latest and greatest” ideas and initiatives. Of course, most organizations either sideline or dismiss these bothersome skeptics as lousy “team players” who don’t fit into the corporate culture. Bruce McLain was one of these people. At public relations planning meetings, everyone waited for Bruce to weigh in with his often clever and always incisive comments.
AGC Chief Economist Advises Construction Industry to “Get Used To” Higher Material Costs
"Get used to higher materials cost inflation," Ken Simonson, chief economist for The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), warned earlier this week, following the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ release of its report on the producer price index (PPI) for May. "Overall, producer prices are remaining well behaved, with only a 0.2% increase in May and a 1.5% increase in the last year, outside of food and energy," Simonson noted. "But the PPI for construction materials and components jumped 1.2% last month and 7.8% over 12 months. By project type, the 12-month increases range from 8% for new single-unit residential construction to 16% for highway construction. "Many materials are contributing to the increase," Simonson commented.
M/E Insider: Promotions and More
• Lilker Assocs. , New York, announced that Michael Levine, P.E. , has joined the firm as Director of Institutional Projects.
Rising Fuel Costs Sparking Nuclear Reaction
Nuclear power, a technology long thought dead in this country, is gaining renewed interest from electric utilities and regulators as a way to address both rising fuel costs and plant emissions concerns. Utilities have announced plans to build 17 new nuclear reactors, and government officials are promoting such plants as one way to counter concerns regarding emissions from coal- and oil-fired plants. However, waste concerns continue to plague developers. Fifteen of the 17 proposed new plants would be sited in the southeastern United States, including three in South Carolina.
Supply Chain Blues
Two big issues in the construction of any project are costs and schedule. In an ideal world, there would be a way to meet the demands of both in a manner that satisfies all parties. Of course, that's easier said than done.
Ivy, Money and Other Things Green
Perhaps on some primordial level it has to do with the migratory instincts of birds, but if there's one constant in my life, it's that I know I'll be doing a lot of flying every spring—and indeed I have over the past few weeks, traveling to a number of conferences, media events, etc. The theme of this issue is sports facilities, which has nothing to do with flying, but many of these venue...
M/E Insider: An Appointment, a Contract, a Certificate, an Award and Some New Hires
• Michael W. Coyne, P.E., vice president for Smith Seckman Reid, Inc. and managing principal of SSRCx, LLC, SSR’s commissioning subsidiary, has been appointed to the Associated Air Balance Council Commissioning Group’s National Board of Directors, which acts as the governing body for ACG.
Keeping A Lid On Costly HVAC Claims
Hot enough? Too cold perhaps? If an office’s temperature seems too hot, too cold or too unpredictable, maybe the building’s HVAC isn’t working properly. Often situations like this lead to claims that the system was improperly designed. That is not good news for the individual or firm responsible for designing or installing the HVAC system. For mechanical engineers, architects and others in the design industry, HVAC claims are a big concern.
M/E Insider: Promotions and New Hires
• Chris Johnston, P.E. , and James Coe, P.E., RCDD , have been named vice presidents in the Atlanta office of Syska Hennessy Group . In his new position, Mr.
A Dip in the Lake: Using LakeWater to Cool HVAC
Increasing energy efficiency and lowering costs while satisfying comfort-demanding consumers and protecting the environment is no small task. A recently completed project in Toronto, Canada, is an example of what can happen when all the right components are in place. The key was drawing icy water from the lake, and using it to chill the water used to air condition downtown buildings. Water at 4 The project was initiated by Enwave District Energy Ltd., an organization owned 43% by the city of Toronto, and 57% by the OMERS pension fund (the Ontario Municipal Employees Retirement System).
Best Practices in Operation: Do Nothing is No Option
In the good old days, it seemed as though profit margins were high and demand was upward and predictable. While business inefficiency was always a topic of some concern, it was overpowered by the need to never stop the production juggernaut. Where inefficiency was recognized and addressed, the attention was clearly on improving the means of production, not on the business as a whole.
New UL Safety Standards Mean Changes for Specifiers
White Paper by: Pass & Seymour/Legrand When the first ground fault circuit interrupter was invented in 1971, it revolutionized the electrical industry, reducing electrocutions by protecting building occupants from lethal ground faults. Today GFCIs have evolved from safety enhancements to necessities, required to be installed in every building, from homes and offices to health-care facilities and entertainment complexes. As GFCIs continue to develop, they are paving the way for greater safety standards—and 2006 will bring the most stringent requirements ever. A GFCI de-energizes a circuit when a current to ground could result in electric shock.
NEMA Launches Electroindustry Economic Outlook Service
NEMA Business Information Services (NEMA/BIS), the consulting arm of the National Electrical Manufacturers Assn., has announced the availability of its newest product, the Electroindustry Economic Outlook Service, an up-to-date, forward-looking analysis of the electroindustry and the economic fundamentals that drive it. The Electroindustry Economic Outlook Service is described by the association as a subscription-based, regularly updated compendium of the information that industry professionals and executives most often request. Content is drawn from a wealth of data sources, including numerous U.S. government and international data agencies, the Global Insight model of the U.S.
Building a Better Prison
Louis Sullivan most likely wasn't thinking about correctional facilities when he argued that the form of a building should follow its function, but few other building types point out the wisdom of this school of thought quite as well. Each facility is designed to meet a specific population's needs, and every element must be designed to perform—and survive—in a highly demanding environment. Experts say the market for these buildings shows no signs of slowing, and new design strategies and technologies are evolving. Your tax dollars at work Though correctional facilities rarely top taxpayers' agendas, tougher sentencing laws have resulted in more prisoners—and the need for space to house them—across the U.S. Those specializing in correctional-facility design say today's market is primarily centered at the county and state level, with federal projects being fewer and farther between.
CH2M HILL Secures General Contractor License in China
CH2M HILL announced in February that it has been issued a general contractor's license by the Shanghai Ministry of Construction in China. This enables CH2M HILL to provide consulting, engineering, project management, construction management and fully integrated engineering, procurement and construction services. The license also positions the firm for future general building and public works facilities in China. “This will position CH2M HILL to serve its many multi-national clients’ expansion plans in the industrial marketplace to fulfill Chinese demand,” said David Rosamond, vice president.
A New Lab Formula
Dr. Frankenstein might have some trouble adapting to the modern laboratory environment. His cluttered, poorly lit, cave-like workspace—complete with crackling dynamos and vial upon vial of mysterious fluid—is a far cry from the spacious, daylit and well-ventilated facilities that researchers desire today. But one trait of scientists that transcends generations—and the boundary between fiction and reality—is a passion for the work.
Wyoming Seeks To Make Power an Export Crop
A recently announced study is intended to help Wyoming planners determine the transmission facilities needed to make the state a larger power exporter to the western United States . The Wyoming-West study will build on previous efforts to determine future energy needs in the region. Several major transmission projects have been either proposed or initiated in the last year to create new interconnections between Wyoming and other states in the area, including California , Nevada , Utah , Wyoming and Arizona . This new study will identify infrastructure requirements to meet the needs of these new interconnections. The study is being sponsored by the Wyoming Infrastructure Authority , a quasi-governmental group formed in 2004 to plan and fund new transmission capacity, and National Grid , a British-based power company whose U.S.
Eminent-Domain Debate Could Affect Georgia Power Lines
The populist movement against municipal eminent-domain actions could add fire to a Georgia group's efforts to rein in the right of power companies to site new transmission lines on private property. Homeowners Opposing Powerline Encroachment (HOPE) is hoping to gain new support as the Georgia legislature begins debate on several bills seeking to curb the ability of towns and cities to seize pri...
DOE Boosts FSU’s Grid Research Efforts
The U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE) awarded Florida State University (FSU) a $4.7 million grant in late 2005 to aid the research efforts of the school's Center for Advanced Power Systems (CAPS). CAPS is already a leading power-system research center, focusing on both land- and ship-based equipment and systems.
Solar Industry Reps Promise Growth Following California Rebate Plan
Photovoltaics makers are planning for expansion in the wake of an announcement by California regulators in January that the state will offer $3.2 billion in rebates for solar. The plan, which puts California second only to Germany in terms of governmental spending on solar power, will span the next 11 years and could enable the installation of up to 3,000 MW of solar-based generating capacity. The program includes $2.8 billion in incentives for solar-equipment installation on existing residential, commercial, industrial and agricultural buildings. An additional $400 million will provide incentives for residential builders to incorporate PV into new-home designs. Solar manufacturers indicated the move could lead to expansions of existing manufacturing facilities, according to interviews reported on the Renewable Energy Access website.
More Plant Managers Move to Recycling Waste Oil for Heat
Plant managers are increasingly considering the possibility of recycling waste oil as a way to fight rising energy costs, according to a new survey by Abanaki Corp., Cleveland, Ohio, a company in the business of oil skimming products. In a recent survey, Abanaki found that 78% of respondents are struggling to find ways to reduce plant energy costs, and in the face of record-high fuel oil prices, 35% of respondents said they would consider burning waste oil to heat their plants. Now that President Bush has called for new ways for Americans to reduce their addition to oil, the findings suggest that companies could be doing more to reduce winter heating bills. Although three quarters of the respondents said that their companies skim oil from their wastewater, only eight percent said that their plants already burn waste oil for heat. Using an oil skimmer, companies can collect up to 40 gallons per hour of oil or grease from wastewater. When combined with an oil concentrator, the amount of water in the oil can be reduced to less than one percent in most cases, making the oil suitable for burning in a waste oil furnace or boiler. “Plant managers should not let the money hidden in their wastewater go to waste,” said Abanaki president Tom Hobson.
Active Design in Active Seismic Zones
We are all familiar with scenes of catastrophic earthquake damage from reports in the newspaper and on the evening news. The release of energy during seismic events is enormous and can incur significant loss of human life. The physical damage resulting from these events can be staggering to buildings, utility and transportation infrastructure systems.
The Future is Now
With some manufacturers at this year's AHR Expo promoting new products with tactics right out of a bad sci-fi flick, those walking the show floor in Chicago last month got an eyeful of how the future is perceived—at least from a 1960s perspective. That said, tales of building innovations in the Far East right now could be an indicator that certain romantic visions of tomorrow aren't so far-fetched. Speaking at an all day seminar on building intelligence at the ASHRAE Winter Meeting, Jim Young of San Diego-based RealComm regaled attendees with strange but true images of things he saw on a tour of buildings in Asia, such as one man buying a Coca-Cola with his cell phone. With stories of rampant digital signage to control rooms that look like Vegas sports books, Young, whose consulting business is primarily oriented toward the real-estate development community, said he returned from Asia with a strange feeling in his belly. "Everyone who knows me knows I'm typically very enthusiastic, but I have to say that enthusiasm has been mixed with fear in that I think the U.S.
Retail developers and designers these days must deliver the gamut from big box stores to specialty boutiques. This is becoming increasingly difficult, as trends such as narrower target markets, the increasing popularity of "retail-tainment" and adding retail into mixed-use development demand more innovative thinking and additional resources. Perhaps the greatest task at hand is something somewhat foreign to the retail scene: achieving energy efficiency to meet the requirements of a new breed of codes. Title 24 in California is receiving the most notoriety of these new standards with its requirement that general lighting consumption now be only 1.2 watts per sq.
Industry Roundup: Awards and Certifications for ClimateMaster, Dedicated Micros, Falcon Electric and Others
• ClimateMaster, Oklahoma City, announced that its president, Dan Ellis, receivedthe Richard C. Schulze Distinguished Service Award from the Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (ARI) on Nov. 14 at ARI’s 52nd Annual Meeting held in Miami, Fla. • Dedicated Micros, Chantilly, Va., a DVR manufacturer, has partnership with International Electronics, Canton, Mass.
News from Power-Gen: EPA Regs, IBC and CHP
Codes and regulations for standby and emergency generators were among the hottest topics of discussion at the Power-Gen International conference and expo, held in Las Vegas in early December. And one of the most widely discussed issues was the recent announcement from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency concerning its New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) for stationary generator sets.
Security Awareness and Rating Group Created
While the effort to secure federal buildings against terrorism is well underway, more than 85% of non-residential U.S. buildings are neither owned nor leased by the federal government. In an effort to fill the security gap, a new group has been formed to promote security awareness and measures. Led by the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Architectural Engineering Institute—and supported by numerous building, design, management and ownership organizations—the Building Security Council (BSC) is dedicated to enhancing public safety by promoting building security.
For a generation of students used to having their own bedrooms, TVs, computers and, in many cases, cars, the expectation—demand, even—for certain lifestyle amenities at colleges and universities is quickly becoming the norm. This is a lesson savvy school designers have learned and are communicating to their university clients so that these institutions can deliver the kinds of buildings that best allow them to be in a position to land these highly desired, if somewhat pampered, prospects. "You have to have the best facilities if you want to compete for the best students," says Don Rerko, AIA, director of college and university facilities, URS, Cleveland. And, according to Mike Brennan, AIA, senior vice president, HSMM, Roanoke, Va., the competition among institutions is very strong. "Most [schools] are looking for ways to differentiate themselves with expanded programs, modernized facilities, diverse residential opportunities and a host of amenities," he says. It's this last category, says Gary Pateau, a senior vice president of development with Altanta-based Carter, that's really influencing a lot of campus construction.
In Hot Water
Industry experts discuss strategies for reducing Legionella outbreaks while, at the same time, maintaining water temperature at levels safe enough to prevent scalding. CSE: How common is it for facility owners and designers to proactively address the issues of Legionella and scalding? FITZGERALD: Unfortunately, not as common as it should be. I attribute this to the lack of understanding by infection control practitioners and facilities management about sources of bacteria and effective treatment protocols. SHEERIN: But in general, media coverage, facility maintenance education and sometimes local and state regulatory enforcement have created a greater awareness of the Legionella hazard. And most health-care facilities we work with proactively monitor and maintain their domestic hot water systems. HOOVER: While that's generally true, one obstacle I foresee to a more proactive approach is the rising cost of natural gas.
M/E Insider – 2005-12-19
• Dennis Cronin has joined Gilbane Building Company , Lawrenceville, N.J., as principal for the Mission Critical Center of Excellence. Cronin has 25 years experience in the data center/mission-critical market segment. • Smith Seckman Reid, Inc. has added four new employees to its Memphis office: Francois van Eck, P.E.
PoE Plus: Enabling a New Generation of Powered Devices
Just two months ago, the IEEE approved the PoE Plus Study Group’s project authentication request, and thus promoted the body to an official Task Force. Recognized as IEEE P802.3at, the task force is currently building on the existing 803.3af specification to enable more power to be transmitted over standard Ethernet cables (at least 30 watts, as opposed to 13 watts). A recently published report, “PoE: Global Market Opportunity Analysis,” from Natick, Mass.-based Venture Development, examines the impact and effect a higher power standard will have on the marketplace. The report estimates that during a four-year period, powered device sales will exhibit a 38% compound annual growth rate, and in 2008 the market will exceed $5.2 billion in revenues. The later portion of sales will be derived primarily from new applications or powered devices that will utilize this new higher power standard. One portion of the report analyzes over 40 applications to identify and rate the likelihood of PoE penetration for each.
ARC Honorable Mentions
Every year for this competition, CSE gets submissions for a number of outstanding projects. Indeed, each binder often reveals a very neat system, technology or application that's worthy of being called out. Unfortunately, we can only pick one overall ARC winner per category for project of the year and the individual systems—even when the judging is close, as it was this year.
Keeping the Stage Lights On—And Audience Safe
Whether they go to Las Vegas to see Wayne Newton, Celine Dion or Cirque du Soleil, the last thing that the public wants is a theater that goes dark in the middle of the show. But this isn't just about losing money on an expensive ticket. More importantly, there's the matter of fire, life-safety and emergency egress lighting systems functioning correctly. The owners of these venues have a two-fold challenge.
Major D-B Progress in Illinois
The Illinois Legislature just passed SB 766, The Design-Build Procurement Act, and Governor Rod Blagojevich is expected to sign the bill, according to the Design-Build Institute of America (DBIA). The House adopted the bill on November 3 by a vote of 106-9, following the Senate’s vote of 51 to 2 to adopt it on April 14th. The Act will give the Illinois Capital Development Board (CDB) the ability to use the design-build project delivery method. Previously, only very limited design-build authority existed for public projects in Illinois.
New NSPE Partnership to Provide Graduate Degree and Training Programs
Recognizing the need for professional engineers to continually enhance their professional competency, the National Society of Professional Engineers (NSPE) has partnered with Stevens Institute of Technology’s WebCampus to provide its members with discounts on leading-edge graduate degree programs and training opportunities. Recognized as the “best online university” by the Sloan Foundation, WebCampus currently offers over 160 courses allowing individuals to earn an MBA, 12 master’s degrees and 31 graduate certificate programs. With NSPE already offering a wide range of continuing education opportunities to those needing to fulfill licensure requirements—on-demand seminars, web seminars and live programs at NSPE national meetings—the accessibility to WebCampus will provide yet another education vehicle for members. “Our partnership with Stevens will help address the needs of our members who want to earn additional degrees or certificates in specialty areas,” said NSPE Director of Education, Mary Maul. “For busy engineers with little spare time, Stevens WebCampus is the perfect alternative for NSPE members who don't have the time to sit in a classroom.” Available programs from WebCampus include Project Management graduate degree programs, accredited through a joint collaboration of the Project Management Institute (PMI) and the Global Accreditation Center for Project Management (GAC).
The Light Brigade Wins GSA Contract for Fiber-optic Training
The Light Brigade, Tukwila, Wash., has been awarded a contract from the U.S. General Services Administration to provide fiber-optic training and training materials to the federal government. This contract, #GS-02F-001R, details special discounts on Light Brigade training courses as well as on educational DVDs, videos and CD-ROMs. Fiber Optics 1-2-3 focuses on the design, installation, testing and maintenance of fiber-optic communication systems for voice, video and data applications.
AGC Voices Displeasure to Congress on Proposed Spending Cuts
The Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) has expressed concern about proposed discretionary spending cuts being reviewed by Congress. The cuts include reductions in federal investment in infrastructure programs. AGC Senior Executive Director, Government and Public Affairs Jeff Shoaf, in a letter to the U.S. House of Representatives, said, “while we recognize the need to provide disaster relief funding, and support accomplishing this goal in a fiscally responsible way, AGC is concerned that spending reductions to federal construction accounts will diminish our ability to meet the nation’s critical infrastructure needs, including those resulting from the impacts of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.” The letter noted that deferring critical infrastructure investment today will only put off additional federal spending until later, when it will be necessary to respond to higher construction costs and address compounding capital and maintenance needs. “Now is not the time to propose spending cuts to programs that protect against the impacts of natural disasters,” Shoaf said, adding, “A two percent reduction in federal construction programs would result in more than a $1 billion cut to critical infrastructure spending.”.
Ohio History Museum Protects the Past with 21st Century Fire Protection
There’s a tremendous admiration and respect for the way things used to be at the CrawfordAuto-AviationMuseum and its adjacent history museum and archival library in Ohio. Home to nearly 200 antique, vintage and classic cars and aircraft ranging from the first enclosed automobile to the first winner of the Cleveland 500, the Crawford collection is one of the top ten in the nation according to Car Collector magazine. Until recently, however, the museums shared a fire-safety system that was also an artifact. Forty years old, the antiquated system's principal drawback was that it treated the different museums that comprise the complete historical facility as entirely separate entities. Mark Corcoran, chief of protection services for the Western Reserve Historical Society, the organization that runs the museum, explains the practical and potentially dangerous problem which could result from such a limited system. "Because we had added on fire alarms subsequent to the initial installation, the various alarms did not link together," he says.
Enlightened on EPAct
The National Electrical Manufacturers Assn. (NEMA) recently convened a coalition of organizations to educate its members, government officials and the community on the commercial buildings tax deduction provision and proper implementation of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct 2005). EPAct 2005 provides a new deduction for investing in energy-efficient systems for commercial building property. The deduction is equal to the energy-efficient expenditures made on the property, subject to a cap, and applies to both new construction and retrofits that are installed between Dec.
The Right Kind of Lighting Can Save You Money in Energy Costs—and Taxes
On August 8, President Bush signed the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct 2005). Estimated to cost the federal government about $14.5 billion over 10 years, EPAct 2005 is the biggest overhaul of national energy policy since 1992. One of the act's provisions includes a tax deduction of up to $1.80 per sq. ft.
New Products – 2005-11-01
Notification circuit calculator is web-based for easy access. Users can perform notification circuit design calculations by entering ceiling strobe candela values and inputting the longest wall and the ceiling height of the room. The tool uses the calculations described in Chapter 7 of the 2002 edition of NFPA 72, which permits the use of a performance-based alternatives.
In the commercial office arena, designers are scoring with a one-two space combination that promotes employee collaboration yet accommodates greater flexibility into the space itself. "There has been a reduction in private assignable office space toward an increase in collaborative spaces," says Bob Colletta, AIA, a senior vice president in the Phoenix office of SmithGroup. "This can take the form of flexible team/project rooms, casual meeting areas in the open office and even 'chance' meeting spaces throughout." "It's a key tool for increased performance and reinforcing corporate culture," concurs Francisco Laurier, vice president, corporate design, EwingCole, Philadelphia. In other words, by setting up informal meeting areas, employees are encouraged to engage in spontaneous work sessions, as opposed to boring and unproductive meetings in traditional conference rooms. "One client we work with even has its furniture on casters so teams can be configured and reconfigured quickly for maximum interplay and communication to support project requirements," says Roger Wozny, P.E., president, The Schemmer Assocs., Omaha, Neb. The evolution to more flexible furniture systems is mandating change on the M/E/P side.
Video Over Internet Protocol the Buzz of ASIS
The American Society of Industrial Security seemed to have taken a cue from former NBC Sportscaster Marv Albert, who on David Letterman's program used to present the "wild, the wacky and the bizarre" moments of sports. At its annual conference and expo in Orlando this past month, oddities, ranging from appearances by the Hooters Girls to Jack Ruby's .38 Special filled the floor. The latter was on display at the booth of Video Protein, a company offering Internet-based video security monitoring for smaller businesses that might not have the capital to house or maintain a DVR system.
A Push for Security Standards
A subject consistently billed in numerous sessions at the American Society of Industrial Security's recent conference in Orlando was Homeland Security. Besides generating a lot of work, the federal government is having another significant impact on the security industry in the form of a cordial, but firm push for security standards for both products and design. According to Jon Kinsey, business development manager for the government services group of Simplex, Dublin, Ohio, it starts with the Safety Act. "When you register with the government to get your product approved for use in Homeland Security projects, you must meet these standards," he said. Kinsey's company is currently a pre-qualified vendor with the U.S.
Will We See Offices Again in the Big Easy?
New Orleans has always embraced visitors, including this editor. But Katrina is one traveler the city wishes it never laid eyes on. Overnight, she changed a place of joy and music to one of devastation and misery. What happens from here? This issue focuses on business and the offices where it's conducted.
From the ASIS Show in Orlando…IP Video All the Rage
Greetings from Orlando, Fla., from the 51st annual ASIS International show for security professionals. Along with unusual and interesting novelties, this year’s trade exhibit has also offered serious state-of-the-art security systems. Sportscaster Marv Albert used to have a regular segment on the David Letterman Show where he highlighted the “wild, the wacky and the bizarre” moments of sports. The American Society of Industrial Security seems to have taken a cue and kicked off its annual conference and expo Monday in Orlando with its own share of oddities, ranging from appearances by the Hooters Girls to Jack Ruby's .38 Special. The latter was on display at the booth of Video Protein, a company offering Internet-based video security monitoring for smaller businesses, such as fast-food restaurants, that might not have the capital to house or maintain a DVR system.
Restoring the Nation’s Infrastructure
A new publication, entitled Revitalization, is scheduled to debut in Jan. 2006 and will provide “an integrated voice for redevelopment, restoration, reclamation, renewal and revitalization throughout the country,” according to its publisher, Natick, Mass.-based ZweigWhite. “This is an estimated $1 trillion industry.” The publication is designed to be a comprehensive resource for developers, owners, builders, contractors, planners, designers, landscape architects, environmental professionals, community leaders and government officials.
Power System Checkup
During the 2003 summer blackout, which left large parts of the Midwest and East Coast in the dark, hundreds of health-care facilities were affected. Like many of its neighbors, one Midwest hospital lost both primary and alternate power. To add insult to injury, the local utility soon after informed the hospital that due to local growth, it would have to start charging a hefty fee for alternate power service. The hospital decided it was time to back up its entire campus with emergency gensets. Power events are often the catalyst that finally motivates a health-care facility to address neglected maintenance and needed upgrades.
Half Full or Half Empty?
On the face of it, engineers pursuing business in the industrial market today should be seeing plenty of half-full glasses. According to a July National Assn. of Manufacturers (NAM)/ Fortune Magazine survey, 86% of large manufacturers and 82% of smaller ones describe their outlook as positive.
Sprinkler Retrofits Can Be Fast and Cost-Effective
If you haven't finished a fire sprinkler retrofit recently, chances are you'll be starting one soon. College dorms, in particular, are a hotbed of activity, as are downtown high-rises. Why all the interest? Basically, there are three reasons driving the increase in fire sprinkler retrofits: First, more people are safety-conscious and see fire sprinklers as a means to save lives.
GSA LC Mandate Gets Mixed Reviews
The U.S. General Services Administration mandated the participation of certified lighting designers on its projects a few months ago, but this has created questions among those involved in lighting design. Already hazy on what exactly it means to bear the "LC" (Lighting Certified) credential after one's name, some electrical engineers are expressing further confusion in attempting to understand the ramifications of GSA's mandate. In response to a web story CSE ran last month, one reader queried: "Does one infer correctly that in addition to being a licensed professional engineer, one must now obtain certification from NCQLP in order to sign, seal and deliver GSA documents?" According to the National Council on Qualifications for the Lighting Professions (NCQLP), the makers of the LC exam, "The LC credential demonstrates to clients/customers and your peers that you have acquired the necessary knowledge, understanding and ability to apply lighting principles and techniques successfully." In other words, it verifies that one is a capable lighting designer.
M/E Insider: An Award for USGBC, and New Offices for Two Engineering Firms
• The U.S. Green Building Council was recently awarded the fourth annual National Building Museum’s Henry C. Turner Prize for Innovation in Construction Technology for its promotion of sustainable design and building practices and its development of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System. • Pat Mullin, P.E.
HVAC Industry Roundup: STB teams with Cybosoft; Sullair celebrates its 40th
• Siemens Building Technologies, Buffalo Grove, Ill., has signed an agreement with CyboSoft, Rancho Cordova, Calif. CyboSoft’s model-free adaptive control technology will be paired with SBT’s BAS to launch a new adaptive control system. • Sullair Corporation, Michigan City, Ind., celebrated its 40th anniversary this summer. The company began manufacturing its portable air compressors in 1965, before expanding to stationary rotary screw compressors. • Taco, Cranston, R.I., took home a Best in Category award at the Mecanex/Climatex trade show held earlier this year in Montreal.
ASHRAE Tells Engineers: When it Comes to Smoke, Follow Local Codes
What do engineers need to know to balance the health impacts of smoking with the desires of building owners and with local laws and regulations? According to a new position document from ASHRAE, engineers should abide by local regulations and codes addressing environmental tobacco smoke (ETS). The organization also takes the position that designers should educate their clients about the substantial limitations and available benefits of engineering controls. ASHRAE’s Environmental Tobacco Smoke Position Document provides information on the health consequences of exposure of nonsmokers to tobacco smoke in indoor environments, and on the implications of this knowledge for the design, installation and operation of HVAC systems. While ASHRAE realizes that elimination of indoor smoking is the best way to minimize ETS exposure, it also recognizes that much of the population is exposed to ETS in workplaces, homes and public places. As such, the Society recommends that engineers work with clients to address ETS exposure. Engineers should take into account all laws and regulations in regard to indoor smoking and develop a strategy that will result in the lowest ETS exposure to building occupants within the context of building use. The document outlines four design and operation approaches to addressing ETS exposure in buildings: • Banning smoking indoors • Only allowing smoking in isolated rooms • Allowing smoking in separate but not isolated spaces • Allowing a mixed occupancy of smokers and nonsmokers The document also contains information on characteristics and concentrations of ETS in indoor spaces, health effects of involuntary smoking and considerations related to HVAC system design and operation.
Year-End Bonuses Vary Significantly Among Design Firms
Most employees who receive cash bonus payments usually compute them as a percentage of their own individual salary (e.g., “I received a 14% cash bonus!”), according to the 2005 PSMJ A/E Bonus & Benefits Survey , which reports the lowest, average and highest cash bonus—as percentage of employee salary—paid to eligible individuals. The survey yields some surprising results: • For the overall survey, the bonus percentages ranged from a low of 2% to a high of 15% with firms providing an average of 8% bonuses. • With respect to firm size, the large firms (staff size over 500) award the largest average (12%) as well as the largest highest (40%) bonus percentages. • By type of service, the engineering (prime), A/E and full-service (A/E/P/I) firms report the widest variation in bonus awards from the 25th percentile to the 75th percentile. Bonus awards vary from 2% to well over 20% in these engineering firms. Even though individuals compute their bonus as a percentage of their own individual salary, the firm should benchmark their total bonus awards compared to the other design firms competing for this same pool of employees.
A Giant Looks at 50
In an ever-changing market, it's hard to stay on top. So when a Giant turns 50, it's time for a well-deserved celebration. But golden anniversaries are also the perfect opportunity to ask how the firm got so successful to begin with—in other words, what makes the Giant so jolly and its competitors green with envy? This year, it's TLC Engineering for Architecture's turn to hit the half-century mark.
Industry Roundup: Spectronics is 50; Fluke Acquires LEM
• Spectronics Corporation is celebrating its 50thAnniversary this year. The company invented fluorescent leak detection in 1955 and is a manufacturer of UV inspection lamps and fluorescent dyes used to locate leaks in all size air conditioning and refrigeration systems. • Fluke Corporation , Everett Washington, announced that it has acquired LEM Instruments , a division of LEM Group . Fluke manufactures, distributes and services handheld test and measurement tools.
Is Long-Term Care Insurance the Right Choice?
In a June e-newsletter from SullivanKreiss Financial , financial consultantSiobhan Kelleher has some good benefit planning advice concerning long-term care insurance. Both the planners of benefit programs and the potential recipients of these benefits would do well to consider these issues. “A significant consideration in retirement planning is how to pay for long-term nursing care, should your health require it,” writes Kelleher. “According to research by the MetLife Mature Market Institute, once you reach age 65, you have a 50% chance of spending time in a nursing home and a 60% chance of needing some type of care at home or in a facility.” This issue is the biggest element of risk in many people's post-retirement financial strategy, Kelleher points out, but unfortunately, the high cost of skilled care can wreak havoc with a financial plan. She goes on to explain that long-term care insurance is a possible solution, but that it might not be the right answer for everyone. “Long-term care insurance, offered by private companies, covers all, or a portion of, the cost of skilled nursing care facilities and in-home assistance,” writes Kelleher.
ASHRAE Forum Examines Gray Water Use
Gray water, defined by some as recycled water for non-potable use, is gaining more and more attention in the building systems community, as illustrated in a forum that took place at the ASHRAE 2005 Annual Meeting last week in Denver, Colo. One unified call from the ASHRAE members present at the forum, entitled "What You Need to Know About Grey Water Before it Can Be Used in HVAC Cooling," was for the industry to settle on a clear definition of the term gray water. While the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency defines it as tertiary treated municipal effluent, many members felt this definition was open to interpretation.
Whether it's allocating space for new technology, contending for U.S. Green Building Council LEED certification or weighing in on a project budget, today's engineers are being asked to get more involved in facility design—and involved from the beginning. For years architects were the ones who estimated the amount of space for mechanical and electrical equipment. Mechanical and electrical infrastructure were viewed almost as if they were necessary evils. Today, however, owners, designers and building managers have a much different view; they're putting more emphasis on the function of M/E/P systems within their facilities—and rightfully so. Communicating early with other team members allows the engineer to design systems that work for all parties, from the facility's administration, care-giving staff and operating engineers to its patients.
Energy Roundup: New Sources ofPower and Energy Efficiency
• Northern Power Systems , Waitsfield, Vt., a subsidiary of Distributed Energy Systems Corp, has entered into an agreement to design, engineer and construct a 400-kW solar power system at a 429,000-sq.-ft. distribution center in southern California owned by footwear maker Timberland. The 401.8-kW PV system will be installed on a new "TruckPort" steel mounting structure next to the warehouse, leveraging an unused area of the facility's truck yard by providing storage space for the facility as well as shaded parking for employees. • New Energy Capital Corp ., Waltham, Mass., has teamed with Energy and Power Solutions, Inc ., to finance three cogeneration facilities at large food processing plants—one in Southern California and two in Massachusetts.
Fire Protection Technology Manages Data Transmission to Inform Firefighters in Advance
In the past year several beta sites have been operating in the Virginia region for one particular fire-protection systems. Now, a recent installation of this same system at LouisianaStateUniversity’s Fire and Emergency Training Institute in Baton Rouge, La. has demonstrated its efficacy in action to the fire community. The system reports alarm conditions to all authorized monitoring stations within two seconds of a sensor or smoke detector going into alarm.
Although he currently resides in Manhattan, former President Bill Clinton hasn't forgotten his Arkansas roots. When it came time to be part of a larger effort to revitalize Little Rock's downtown and riverfront, the city became an easy choice for the location of the library and museum that would preserve and reflect the eight-year history of Clinton's service as 42nd president of the United States. Nestled along the south bank of the Arkansas River inside a new 27-acre city park, the William Jefferson Clinton Presidential Center opened its doors this past fall and houses not only a replica of the Oval Office, but more than 77 million documents, 75,000 artifacts, 1.8 million photographs and 40 million e-mail messages. All presidential libraries have to meet environmental, operational and redundancy standards of the U.S. National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).
Employment Contracts: More Than Just a Handshake
Coach Mike Ditka once said, "Success isn't permanent, and failure isn't fatal." I often think about this quote when considering employment agreements, but in the context of employment, I would add one important point: It sure helps to have a contract. With the increasing rate of turnover in employees and executives, the prudent firm—and its executives and professional staff—will seriously consider entering into an employment contract to protect the interests of all concerned. Like parties to a marriage who sign a prenuptial agreement, by using employment agreements, A/E firms and their employees are not anticipating an imminent divorce. They do, however, desire clear expectations of, and reasonableness in, the terms for their parting of the ways, if that should turn out to be the case. In recent years, we have seen a marked increase in the number of top-level executives and key employees who are demanding employment contracts before taking positions with new firms—or deciding whether to stay with their existing employers.
Advanced Environmental Concepts in Sydney, Australia, a division of Lincolne Scott, is Australia's only professional practice dedicated to the design of passive and integrated environmental systems. Che Wall, group director of both companies, made a presentation at USGBC's GreenBuild Conference last November about sustainable efforts in the Land Down Under, including some neat technologies in a project called Council House 2 or CH2. Su-Fern Tan, an environmental design consultant with AEC, was also involved with the project.
A Win-Wind Solution
An innovative new wind energy system, expected to be available later this summer, offers buildings and businesses a viable system for generating wind power on-site and provides a hedge against future utility price increases. The product of more than 20 years of research, the new turbine is safe and aesthetically pleasing, say its developers. Compact and quiet, the turbine can be installed beside buildings or on urban rooftops and is designed to produce energy with winds of six to 60 miles per hr. "It can reduce costs and provide a natural hedge against rising fuel costs for commercial and industrial users consuming at least 600,000 kilowatt hours (kWh) annually. Businesses, manufacturers, retailers, high-rise office and apartment buildings, local governments, hospitals, schools and universities can all benefit," says Gary Westerholm, CEO and president of McKenzie Bay International, Ltd. To aid in eliminating operating and capital risks for customers, McKenzie Bay will install, own and maintain the equipment.
The News Media is All Over DALI
Barbara Cianci Horton and Lee Brandt know more about DALI than that it stands for Digital Addressable Lighting Interface. The designers from Horton Lees Brogden Lighting Design (HLB), New York, incorporated the fairly novel technology for a newsworthy project they were involved with—a new home for the Associated Press in west Manhattan. The news agency recently moved from its prestigious home in Rockefeller Center to a space formerly occupied by a now-defunct dot.com. In refitting the facility, lighting and control were big concerns.
Medium Voltage for Maximum Effect
Medium-voltage power distribution systems are common in industrial settings and are becoming common in other types of facilities. However, each type of facility has its own special requirements. CSE: Besides industrial plants, what other types of facilities rely on medium-voltage systems? How does specification of these systems differ in non-industrial settings? GUSTIN: Actually, many building types require medium-voltage systems: health-care, office high-rises, sports complexes, data centers and waste and water treatment facilities. Installations can range from simple radial systems to loop systems to multiple-source primary systems.
M/E Insider: HGA Gets New Business Developer; RTKL Becomes CBE Partner
• Susan Katz has joined the San Francisco office of HGA Architects & Engineers as business developer, and will specialize in the arts, community and education markets for northern California. • RTKL Assocs., Inc. , Baltimore, Md., has joined University of California, Berkeley’s Center for the Built Environment as an industry partner. CBE and its partners are dedicated to advancing building materials and technologies through research and development. • Ryan Chapman, P.E.
More A/E Firms are Turning to Market Research
On average, firms in the architecture and engineering industry are expected to double in size every ten years. The question many of these firms need to answer is where all of this growth is going to come from. “One of the first steps firm leaders take toward identifying opportunities is conducting market research,” says Mark Goodale, vice president with Natick, Mass.-based ZweigWhite. “We're getting more and more requests to scan the business environment for new trends and developments.” Goodale shares a few market research tips for firm leaders looking for growth opportunities: Join professional associations.
HI Members Launch “Pump Systems Matter” Program
Thirty-three pump manufacturing and leading supplier companies, all members of the Hydraulic Institute (HI), will lead a National Pump Systems Educational and Market Transformation Initiative called Pump Systems Matter (PSM).The program will place a primary focus on pump systems education and outreach, addressing significant energy savings opportunities, and total cost of pump ownership.The initiative is seeking the active support and involvement of non-government organizations focused on market transformation and energy-efficiency, utilities, user companies, consulting engineering firms, other associations and state and federal agencies among others.The first PSM Organization Meeting will be held in conjunction with the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy's (ACEEE) Summer Study Program in West Point, N.Y. Announced today at the National Market Transformation Symposium in Washington, D.C.,Pump Systems Matter is the first industry-led market transformation initiative in the United States.The following HI member companies have agreed to become Charter Partners of the initiative and will serve on the PSM Steering Committee: • Applied Flow Technology • EagleBurgmann Industries LP • Emerson Motor Company • Flowserve Corporation • Grundfos Pumps • Hamilton Sundstrand Corporation • Inpro/Seal Company • Intelliquip, LLC • ITT Industries - Fluid Technology • Iwaki America Incorporated • John Crane, Inc. • KSB, Inc. • Moyno, Inc. • Peerless Pump Company • Pentair Pump Division • Rockwell Automation • S.A. Armstrong Limited • Sulzer Pumps (US), Inc. • TACO, Inc. • WILO-EMU USA LLC Optimization of pumping systems represents a significant opportunity for U.S. companies and municipalities to save money and energy while reducing maintenance costs and increasing productivity.
The State of Green
With spring coming into full bloom, and of course, the recent observance of Earth Day, it’s an appropriate time to consider the state of sustainable design and LEED—Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. In a meeting last week with CSE advisor Anil Ahuja of CCJM Engineers, Chicago, we spoke of his company’s work in this area, which is significant, including a trio of schools in the far northern suburbs and the new Ford Calumet Center on Chicago’s Southeast side—a former heavy industrial area in a wetland environs. In fact, CCJM is currently working on a total of 10 LEED-hopeful projects. But despite the seeming cornucopia, Ahuja, a LEED-Accredited Professional, thinks firms aspiring to enter the green market need to go into the process with their eyes open and be prepared to get their hands dirty with a lot of hard work. “Developers, for the most part, just don’t care about LEED,” he said. “They just don’t see how they’re going to get more rent money by doing so.” For the most part, he’s found that green backers are generally owners who are committed to the environment.
U.S. Smart Network Device Expenditures to Grow to $2.53 Billion by 2009
Despite perennial predictions heralding the era of the fully automated “smart building” as the next big thing, for practical purposes, the prospect of intelligently networked devices, until very recently, has remained a fantasy. Intriguing as the notion remains, for decades reality has lagged behind promise, as manufacturers and vendors struggle (often at cross-purposes) to put enabling, foundational technologies into place. According to a soon-to-be-released report RGB-299 Intelligent Building Networks from Business Communications Company, Inc. ( www.bccresearch.com ), the total U.S.
Industry Roundup: Fire and Life-Safety News
Mija , Rockland, Mass., makers of EN-Gauge electronic monitoring capability for fire extinguishers and extinguishing systems, announced that its technology has been adopted for use by several industry sectors, including correctional, educational and retail facilities. ACG Identification Technologies , Walluf, Germany, is partnering with Linz, Germany-based Omnikey , a manufacturer of innovative smart card readers, to develop an e-passport RFID reader. The new readers are designed to support federal governments and the security industry in deploying interoperable border control solutions based on contactless electronic passports. BlazeMaster , Cleveland, Ohio, has been awarded a new approval by Factory Mutual (FM) , allowing designers and contractors to expand their use of the company’s CPVC pipe and fittings. Smith Seckman Reid Senior Consultant David Stymiest, P.E., CHFM, has been appointed as the chairman of the National Fire Protection Assn. (NFPA) Technical Committee on Emergency Power Supplies.
Sprinkler Compliance in the Windy City
Editor's note: Many eyes are on Chicago now that it has adopted one of the nation's first mandatory sprinkler ordinances for non-residential high-rises. Following is a breakdown of the city's initial requirements for other municipalities considering Chicago as a would-be model. On Dec. 15, 2004, the city of Chicago adopted a high-rise fire-safety ordinance estimated to affect approximately 1,30...
Lighting: Return of the Engineer
Energy consumption, as defined by Title 24, California's building energy-consumption standard, and the adoption of the 1999 edition of ASHRAE 90.1 as the default energy code for most other states, was a subject almost universally noted in conversations with exhibitors at the most recent Lightfair International in New York.
Commissioning Engineered Building Systems: Scope Enhancement
Last month we looked at some of the benefits of commissioning for building owners and for contractors and subcontractor members of the project team. This month, let’s take a look at the breadth of scope. Commissioning has been a formally recognized practice in project delivery for about a decade, and based on successful results, the breadth of scope in application of the commissioning process continues to increase. ASHRAE’s published definition of commissioning is: “A quality-focused process for enhancing the delivery of a project. The process focuses on verifying and documenting that the facility and all of its systems and assemblies are planned, designed, installed, tested, operated and maintained to meet the Owner’s Project Requirements.” It is appropriate that ASHRAE has helped define commissioning, because the practice really started with a focus on HVAC systems.
Economist Forecasts a Bright Year for Nonresidential Construction
Nonresidential building construction has begun to expand, and the next three years should be good, said Jim Haughey, Ph.D., director of economics for Reed Business Information. Haughey delivered his forecast last week at Reed Construction Data’s 10th annual CEO Breakfast, held in conjunction with the Construction Specifications Institute’s national show in Chicago. Haughey pointed to a number of economic indicators that bode well for the U.S. economy in general and for the construction industry in particular.
GeoPraxis Gets Grant for Green Growth
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has given A/E/C software-development company GeoPraxis, Inc., Petaluma, Calif., a $70,000 grant to help increase the number of new buildings in the West that use sustainable or “green” components. The EPA chose GeoPraxis from a pool of 363 U.S. applicants to receive the funding under the agency’s Small Business Innovation Research contracts program.
King of the Hill
In fashion with the nationwide goal of getting a better handle on health-care costs, one of the country's largest health-care insurance companies, Pittsburgh-based Highmark, decided it would do all it could to achieve economies of scale in developing its new data center. The process began with a decision to remain on the site of an existing facility near Harrisburg, Pa.
You Have the Power! (over Ethernet)
Power over Ethernet continues to grow more popular, and many companies have already implemented PoE solutions. So what exactly should consultants know about this new technology? PoE allows the transmission of electrical power over the same Ethernet infrastructure used for data transmission. It extends the capability of the Ethernet infrastructure and delivers power over high-quality category 5e...
M/E Insider: oBIX Gets a New Co-chair; BCA Gets a New President
• Michael C. English , a founder and senior partner with Horizon Engineering Associates, LLP , New York, has been named president of the board of directors for the Building Commissioning Assn. English was previously BCA’s vice president and spearheaded the organization’s Certified Commissioning Providers program. • Paul Ehrlich, P.E.
ASTM International Subcommittee on Evacuation Devices Forms Task Groups
The American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) International Subcommittee E06.77 on High Rise Building External Evacuation Devices initiated activity at the October 2004 meeting of Committee E06 on Performance of Buildings, by establishing the following three task groups: %%POINT%% Platform Devices: Development of specifications for high-rise external platform devices for evacuation of persons when the primary evacuation routes to a safe zone are unavailable and for transport of emergency responders. %%POINT%% Chute Devices: Development of specifications for high-rise external chute devices for evacuation of persons when primary evacuation routes to a safe zone are unavailable and may transport emergency responders to scene. %%POINT%% Controlled Descent Devices: This standard defines the specifications, requirements, performance, design, practices, markings, construction and test methods for external high-rise building controlled descent devices for evacuation of persons when primary evacuation routes to a safe zone are unavailable and may have the capability of transporting emergency response personnel to the scene. The subcommittee and task groups are seeking additional knowledgeable participants and device manufacturers to be involved in the development of these standards, and have established the following scope: “Development and maintenance of standards for terminology, specification, performance, practices and test methods for devices for high-rise building external evacuation of persons when the primary evacuation routes to a safe zone are unavailable. Such devices may also have the capability of transporting emergency responders. Devices do not include rope or chain ladders, helicopters with platforms, parachutes, balloons, or evacuation chairs.” Task groups have initiated activity to develop draft standards ready for subcommittee ballot by the next meeting to be held during ASTM Committee Week, April 17-20. For further technical information go to www.astm.org .
New Home for the Home Office
The Home Office is a principal government department servicing United Kingdom residents in a number of ways, including crime and drug prevention, immigration and nationality issues, counter-terrorism and community activism. Up until now, assorted Home Office departments were scattered in buildings all around Westminster in London, but thanks to a dedicated team of designers and developers, acti...
Around the World
American A/Es venturing beyond the Atlantic and Pacific shores are finding plenty to do these days, with an overseas market that is generally up, particularly in Asia and the Middle East. "The big news, which isn't necessarily new news, is that China is very hot," says Gene Schnair, AIA, a managing partner with Skidmore, Owings & Merrill's San Francisco office.
Pennsylvania Joins States Pushing Greener Power
The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania will be generating 18% of its energy from cleaner sources by 2020, according to legislation signed in December by Gov. Edward G. Rendell. With this move, Pennsylvania joins a growing list of states backing the development of more environmentally friendly energy resources.
Would You Like to Super-Size That?
Editor’s note: State-of-the-art baggage-handling systems are having a major impact on the design and renovation of today’s airport construction, as described in the February edition of CSE. These systems, in turn, are being impacted by the size of today’s aircraft. A major change facing airport designers today is simply the size of aircraft.
Industry Roundup: Alliances, Awards and Anniversaries
• Advance Transformer, Rosemont, Ill., will celebrate its 60th anniversary in 2005. From its beginning as a producer of transformers for government contracts from a 4th floor storefront operation in Chicago, Advance has grown to employ more than 5,000, offer over 1,000 ballast and LED driver products and occupy more than 1 million sq. ft.
Meet the New Boss
Airport managers face a conundrum today. With passenger numbers approaching, and sometimes exceeding, those of pre-Sept. 11, 2001, facility growth is back on the radar. However, the continuing problems of their biggest financial resources—the major airlines—are raising new questions as to who, exactly, will pay for these much-needed expansions.
Attention FAA: Turn Off the Lights!
Electrical savings are significant wherever efficiencies are practiced, and airports are no exception. I recently wrote to Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) on this subject, after the results of her Government Accountability Office (GAO) commissioned study, published last fall, on the inability of many Americans to consume less electricity in off-peak hours.
Industry Events – 2005-02-01 – 2005-02-01
For a complete listing of events go to www.csemag.com and click Events.
A Backbone for Security
Airports are among the most complex and dynamic environments for telecommunications and security systems. Continuously changing user needs and ever-evolving technology demand systems with open architectures and standards that accommodate change and future additions. But just as important is that these new technologies don't adversely affect existing infrastructure that will remain in use.
Moscone Center Employs World’s Largest Lighting Control System
Project Profile: Moscone West, San Francisco Developed Space: Gross building area of 775,000 square feet. Primary exhibit space is 96,660 square feet at street level, with “swing space” of 199,432 square feet on levels two and three for use either as exhibit or meeting/banquet space in flexible combinations. Each “swing space” can be configured into as many as 38 rooms. Project Challenge Moscone West’s flexible space configurations demanded an exceptional degree of flexibility in lighting control.
Future of Digital Unveiled at MIT
Movement toward more wireless and digital systems continues to gain momentum, says a recent e-newsletter from San Diego-based Realcomm, the organizer of a real estate conference dedicated to hot commercial office and real estate trends and the latest technologies. According to the newsletter, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology recently held its New Century Symposium, and the following di...
There was a time in this country when many people thought drop ceilings were a modern architectural marvel. It meant a then-rare, but highly desired technology—air conditioning—could be added to an old building. Such was the case with the Federal Courthouse in Cleveland, a turn-of-the-century Beaux Arts structure that saw the addition of AC in the late 1960s.
The Long View of Energy
A detailed consensus strategy was recently released with recommendations for major long-term challenges to the formulation of a national energy policy. Ending the Energy Stalemate: A Bipartisan Strategy to Meet America's Energy Challenges is the result of efforts by a commission comprised of energy experts from industry, government, labor, academia and environmental and consumer organizations a...
A “Cable” to Smart Building Designers
In these pages, and online in CSE NewsWatch and our BAS at a Crossroads webcast, we've frequently reported on the confluence of building automation and business enterprise systems. For those energized about the potential of this development, obviously, it means rethinking a lot of things, and perhaps toward the top of that list—at least in terms of the technologies most ready for change...
Lighting Provider Hits Home Run for Shea Stadium
From baseball to the Beatles to Pope John Paul II, Shea Stadium has hosted some of the most memorable icons in American pop culture history. Since its opening day, April 17, 1964, the $25 million home of the New York Mets, has hosted more than 73 million sports, music and cultural fans. Many things have changed over the decades, including the lighting leading patrons to and from their seats. The original incandescent lighting in place for the first pitch was later converted to a high-pressure sodium and metal halide lighting system.
Fire Safety for a Downtown Kansas City Development
Conceived some five years ago, Cathedral Square is a handsome development on the west side of Kansas City, Mo.’s downtown. It brings together a premier office/commercial facility and a five-level, 1,400-car underground garage topped with a public plaza complete with extensive landscaping and five fountains—a place where people can work, conduct their personal business, shop and eat, keeping employees happy and employers loyal to the area. Cathedral Square Block 105 houses the headquarters of Kansas City Southern (KCS), a transportation company that encompasses one of the last important independent railways in the nation. KCS wanted its new headquarters to be modern, but to reflect its distinguished 19th century railway heritage. Cathedral Square’s fire protection was a negotiated design/build project with Siemens Building Technologies, Fire Safety Division, Florham Park, N.J. The alarm scenario In the nearly two years that Cathedral Square has been occupied, no false alarm has occurred.
Attack of the Metal-Munching Microbes
Like creatures in a horror movie, tiny acid-producing microorganisms are eating away at some of our most important infrastructures, including power and petrochemical plants, pipelines, pulp and paper mills and transportation systems. Commonly known as microbiologically influenced corrosion (MIC), this little-understood phenomenon also is a cause of pipe failures (blockage and leakage) in automatic fire sprinkler systems throughout the world. In a study of 155 cases of failed sprinkler components collected between 1994 and 2000, the FM Global metallurgical laboratory found evidence of MIC in about 40% of the cases. According to FM Global Property Loss Prevention Data Sheet 2-1, Prevention and Control of Internal Corrosion in Automatic Sprinkler Systems, corrosion, including MIC, was the fifth largest cause of sprinkler leakage losses, preceded by mechanical injury (e.g., forklift impact), freezing, defective equipment and accidental discharge. Until recently, MIC has been implicated in sprinkler pipe failures primarily through empirical evidence such as pinhole leaks, particularly those that appear in relatively new sprinkler systems; sulfur odor; pitting; biofilm (black slime); flow restrictions or blockage; and the formation of characteristic nodules known as tubercles.
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Webcast: Fire and Life-Safety in the Wake of High-Profile Tragedies
Webcast originally aired LIVE This Webcast is only available on CD-rom: Purchase a CD-Rom of this Webcast Consulting-Specifying Engineer makes it easy to earn learning units right at your desk-- learn how ! Earn learning units for this Webcast: Take the CEU Exam now. High-rise fires in major cities, club tragedies with major casualties. These and other recent high-profile incidents have shifted the attention of building owners, and the attention of the nation, to fire and life-safety protection issues in today’s buildings. How can the Professional Engineer best respond to these heightened demands from the building community and state and local governments? Find out in an exclusive webcast event from Consulting-Specifying Engineer. Earn valuable learning unit's for your participation. Interact and ask questions from leading experts on the subject.
Health Care and Education Should Be Hot Design Markets in 2005
Consulting-Specifying Engineer -- 12/6/2004 Health care, K-12 and higher education will be among the hottest markets for design and construction firms in 2005, say analysts from Natick, Mass.-based A/E consultant ZweigWhite. Power, air pollution and ports markets, however, will struggle. According to ZweigWhite's latest report, 2005 AEC Industry Outlook: Strategy and Insight for Design & Construction Firms, the architecture, engineering and construction business has outperformed the U.S. economy as a whole in recent years, including in 2004.
As New England's largest transportation center, Boston's Logan International Airport keeps five terminals busy. But in August 2001, Delta Air Lines reached an agreement with the Massachusetts Port Authority (MPA) to develop a replacement terminal, for the original Terminal A, to be owned and operated by MPA.
Home-Sized Cogen Could Be Hot Product
A team of government engineers and appliance manufacturers is hoping to develop combined heat-and-power units sized for U.S. homes and designed to be compatible with forced hot-air heating systems. The U.S. Dept. of Energy is leading the group, which also includes the product and technology-development firm TIAX, HVAC supplier Rheem Manufacturing company, and GAMA, an appliance-manufacturer tra...
Making the Switch to VoIP
Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) is the transport of voice-coded information embedded in an IP packet, typically using Ethernet as the data network physical transport medium. This is opposed to transmission over copper analog circuits using private branch exchange (PBX) switching technology. This technology has many benefits for the user to consider: reduction of long-term maintenance and st...
A Quality Northwest Brew
Connoisseurs of hand-crafted beers are well aware that the American Northwest has produced many fine brews in recent decades. So, when one hears about the Brewery Blocks in Portland, Ore., it's only logical to think beer. But this story isn't about brewing lagers and Pilseners. It's about an ambitious five-block, speculative mixed- use project in downtown Portland's Pearl District, which like m...
M/E Insider: 40 New LEED APs at Two Firms; Kling Names Scholarship Recipient
• Syska Hennessy Group has upped its LEED Accredited Professional total to 53, as 32 Syska engineers have received LEED accreditation to date in 2004. LEED APs are certified under the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program. • ThermalTech , Cincinnati, announced that eight more of its staff has achieved LEED AP status.
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For many U.S. M/E/P engineering firms designing industrial facilities, the world is getting both bigger and smaller. What's growing is the number of international industrial projects that U.S. firms are involved in. What's shrinking are the borders and barriers to designing factories abroad—both real and psychological.
Ready for Takeoff
How does one get from a "green" building that merely looks environmentally friendly to an intelligent, high-performance building? The answer is already before us—traditional building automation. BAS may not be the first thing that comes to mind when contemplating green products, but its importance has clearly been recognized by one of the leading agencies on sustainable design, the U.
An Inside Track for Winning Green Designs
Greening a building the size and complexity of the David L. Lawrence Convention Center in Pittsburgh was not easy. It's a sophisticated urban building that celebrates its relationship with the riverfront, adjacent historic and cultural districts, the natural environment and transportation options. Perhaps the keys to its success were identifying green goals from the get-go and establishing a we...
All Fired Up
When it comes to specifying clean-agent fire suppression systems in sensitive environments such as computer rooms or museums, engineers today face a smorgasbord of chemical options. It's no secret that FM-200 and Inergen dominate the clean-agent market, but several alternatives are also now available that may be even better depending on the application.
IT Report: CAD News
Any DWG Software, Inc. has come out with an Any DWG to PDF Converter for use with the Windows operating system. The application provides AutoCAD users with the tools to convert CAD drawings to PDF files.
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River of Life
These words are part of a presentation visitors hear upon touring the Sandstone Visitor Center, a launching point for travelers wishing to take in awe-inspiring, panoramic views of the tree-covered Appalachian Mountains, the New River Gorge Corridor and the New River itself in southern West Virginia.
There is no life without water. And like life, water is something that many people take for granted. While some parts of the United States, particularly the Southwest, face very real shortages, it doesn't look as though we'll be reduced to wearing the water-capturing suits of Frank Herbert's desert-world Dune novels any time soon.
A New Law Affects Standards Writing
Way back in the Sept. 1990 issue of CSE, I discussed potential liability for organizations involved in codes and standards development. However, Congress passed a new law this year that will directly affect how the earlier court rulings are applied. In my article of 14 years ago, I highlighted the case of Hydrolevel v.
The Dangers of Neglect
Emergency power must be more reliable than the electric utility. While in some areas of the country this is not a tough assignment, an increasing number of emergency systems are failing because of neglect, bad placement or insufficient monitoring. But let's assume all components of the emergency power supply system (EPSS) have been designed and installed properly, and acceptance tests have been...
In the wake of the Athens Olympic games, where the U.S. women's team took gold in soccer, and the exciting European Cup, in which Greece upset the competition, CSE thought it would be appropriate to take a look at the philosophy behind securing these very visible stadiums that are the would-be targets of both terrorists and another European plague—soccer hooligans.
Power Coalition Formed
On the anniversary of last year's East Coast blackout, representatives of the critical power industry announced the formation of the Critical Power Coalition (CPC), an organization dedicated to developing public policy and establishing a unified voice to ensure the quality, reliability and continuity of power within critical industries, businesses and public services.
Value Engineering Can Work
As design team on potentially the first LEED-certified convention center in the country, none of us were quite sure what the results of our "green" bid packages would be. But when the 45 bid packages began to roll in, it quickly became apparent that we were going to have to deal with a budget problem before the project could continue.
Briefly … – 2004-08-01
The Sustainable Buildings Industry Council (SBIC), Washington, D.C., has issued a call for entries for its 2004 Awards. Winners in three categories—institutional, residential and government—will be honored on Oct. 13 for contributions to sustainable design.
A Standard of Care for Energy
The minimum acceptable criteria for energy efficient design should be defined because there are many conflicting publications and codes available. Since 1975, the generally accepted standard of care for designing commercial buildings for energy efficiency has been ANSI/ASHRAE/IESNA Standard 90.1, Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings.
Killing Kilowatt Hours
If you've taken a trip to the gas station lately, you've no doubt paid more money to fill your tank than you did a year ago—maybe even just a few months ago. That is, unless you've recently traded your vehicle in for a smaller one. While many people tend to groan about higher prices at the pump, cursing the oil companies as they fill their tanks, most of us forget how good we've got it.
Man on an Integration Mission
Dr. Heinrich Hiesinger believes in integration. Not only of building systems, but also in terms of the ability to bring together groups of talented, specialized people who can deliver a single product. In fact, as Group President of the Building Technologies Group of Zurich-based corporate giant Siemens, you might say his job depends on it.
Air-Handling System Details in a Nutshell
When it came to mechanically ventilating the convention center, it was the team's goal to reduce as much energy-consuming equipment as possible. The load characteristics to consider were as follows: System considerations Considerations for system applicability were as follows: As spelled out in previous installments of Project Journal, a natural ventilation scheme was implemented for part-time ...
BD&C Presents Building Team Project Awards
Building Design and Construction , a sister publication to CSE, recently presented its annual Building Team Project Awards. Four projects were Grand Award winners: Emerson College's Tufte Performance and Production Center, Boston. An 80,000-sq.-ft. structure sitting on a 7,000-sq.-ft. footprint, the Tufte Center abuts existing buildings on three sides and is separated from buildings on its fou...
Asia Where It’s At
Earlier this month, real estate technology/automation conference Realcomm brought its message of intelligent buildings to high-tech San Francisco. While the intelligent building phenomenon is seeing progress in this city and neighboring Silicon Valley, it's generally "somewhere between myth and reality" here in the United States, according to the show's co-founder and Producer Jim Young, the Ja...
Letters – 2004-06-01
Getting Youth Interested In the May Editor's Viewpoint "Ah, Ute!" you state, "Frankly, most kids don't have a clue about engineering and are more than a little scared of the profession." Amen! And here's why: 1. Our educational system has become enamored with moral relativism, "self-esteem," dumbing down core courses and standards of learning.
What’s the Alternative?
CONSULTING-SPECIFYING ENGINEER: What advantages do non-metallic piping systems offer over traditional plumbing? DeANGELIS: CPVC and PEX are growing in popularity as acceptance levels increase for these non-metallic piping systems. CPVC delivers long-term performance benefits, such as not being susceptible to corrosion, pitting or scaling.
BAS at the Crossroads
Depending on one's affinity for technology, an ideal habitat might be described as follows: Its processes and the needs of its occupants are monitored, assessed and evaluated continuously. Decisions for maintaining the most desirable environment for this habitat are made with a holistic and global approach where numerous possible actions and responses are quickly factored before the best choic...
Natural Ventilation Options and Performance Simulation
In its concept of a truly sustainable convention center for the city of Pittsburgh, M/E/P engineer Burt Hill Kosar Rittelmann, envisioned that natural air currents off the Allegheny River would cool the main exhibition halls—at least during favorable times of the year when the halls were not densely occupied.
Letters – 2004-04-01
Savings Not Quite There In the Specifier's Notebook "Sensing Savings," (CSE 02/04 p. 66) on automatic sensor controls for lighting, author Al Borden gives concise advice on selection and specification of occupancy sensors for automatic lighting control but leaves the reader with a misunderstanding of the way in which infrared sensors function.
NYC Courthouse Gets a Lift
An involved criminal or civil court case can take a toll on the individuals involved. Similarly, the thousands of people involved annually in such court cases, be they jurists, lawyers or bailiffs, can equally cause wear and tear on a building and its systems. Such was the case with the 40-year-old Manhattan Civil Court Building at 111 Centre Street.
Notes From the Log of a LEED Navigator: Pt. 2
The pursuit of a gold or platinum LEED-certified building often requires the implementation of cutting-edge systems. This certainly was the case with Pittsburgh's David L. Lawrence Convention Center. Again, in our role as the project's LEED navigator—the agent on a LEED project responsible for continually protecting green elements in the midst of budget shortfalls, value engineering and c...
UPS Keeps Marathon on Its Feet
Keeping a world-class marathon up and running in today's digital age requires more than a good supply of bottled water and sports drinks. Take the LaSalle Bank Chicago Marathon, for example. This event hosts more than 40,000 runners a year, and spectators can track their favorite competitors via the web, thanks to microchips located in each runner's shoe.
Below the Surface
Geothermal experts share system specification tips for this ever-emerging, energy-efficient, sustainable technology. CONSULTING-SPECIFYING ENGINEER: It's been said that geothermal technology has been gaining popularity over the past few years at a rate of roughly 20% per year among building owners and design professionals alike.
Dollars and Sense
When it comes to the design of many commercial buildings, a number of owners believe that future capital generated by their buildings will offset increasing operating and maintenance costs. Future anticipated O&M costs are therefore of little concern and are often not included in initial capital cost evaluations.
Notes From the Log of a LEED Navigator
One of the most important lessons learned from our experience on the David L. Lawrence Convention Center was the need for what we've dubbed the "LEED navigator"—at least in cases where the implementation of LEED is new to a majority of participants, as it was on this project. Our team consisted of the Sports and Exhibition Authority (SEA), the owner; Rafael Viñoly Architects (RVA),...
IEEE 10GBASE-T Task Force Approved
The demand for higher data rates and faster applications over cost-effective unshielded twisted-pair cabling continues. And solutions being formatted by the IEEE 802.3 committee will have a major impact on the way customers think about and plan networks. At the IEEE 802 Plenary Meeting last November in Albuquerque, N.
Reliability: A Critical Mission
The actual cause of last August's unprecedented power outage remains unknown. A hapless squirrel, a fallen tree branch or a worn-out insulator—all of these have been suggested as possible initiators in an event that cascaded to include much of the northeastern United States and eastern Canada. Even if an exact cause can't be pinpointed, there are some obvious lessons to be learned from th...
Marketing Sustainable Design Services
What can be done to more effectively promote sustainable design? This was among the questions Interface Engineering, on behalf of the U.S. Green Building Council, sought to answer in surveying a sampling of building practitioners who attended the initial Greenbuild conference in Austin, Texas in 2002.
Cloud Control: Complying with Codes for Smoking Areas
When the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency classified environmental tobacco smoke (ETS) as a Group A carcinogen, many state and local codes began requiring restaurants and entertainment facilities to provide designated smoking areas that prevent smoke from being recirculated to nonsmoking areas. For consulting engineers, these smoking areas open up whole new concerns—and special commis...
Convening With Authority
The effects of Sept. 11 on tourism and the slowdown in the economy certainly have taken their toll on the convention industry. However, industry personnel are starting to see some turnaround. "Over the last decade, there was a tremendous amount of convention center activity, with 20 or more centers in the pipeline at one time," says Michael Ezell, principal at Thompson, Ventulett, Stainback and...
Honeywell and DOE Team Up on Industrial Technology
The U.S. Dept. of Energy (DOE), earlier this month, selected Honeywell to negotiate a $10 million project to develop wireless and sensor technologies to meet plant floor operational control challenges and help reduce U.S. industry operating costs by up to $1 billion annually. The move comes in response to the need for manufacturers nationwide to remove the physical and technology barriers that ...
New Products – 2003-12-01
Smoke detectors offer various combinations: photoelectric alone, or with heat or CO detection. All models automatically compensate for contamination in the chamber, extending time between cleanings and reducing false alarms. Units are available in two- and four-wire bases. (F220 by Bosch) RS#1 Luminaire for office and commercial building stairwells features an occupancy sensor and electro...
Transmission-System Upgrades Can Often Face Powerful Opposition
Months after this summer's massive North American blackout, the nation's electric transmission system remains the focus of attention. Most involved agree on the need for more—and newer—lines. But there is considerable disagreement among leading industry groups on just how much needed upgrades will cost.
CONSULTING-SPECIFYING ENGINEER: Oftentimes, only a small percentage of a project's cost is allocated for building system controls. Does this pose challenges for controls design? STANKE: A low budget for controls may or may not make it difficult to do what the design requires. One has to consider the type of project.
Tech Train Rolls Stateside
The Technology Train is coming to town. In an effort to showcase its products and services to technology decision makers through out the country, Siemens Energy and Automation, Atlanta, will take a 1,000-ft. exhibit-on-rails to 10 U.S. cities between February and May next year. The firm's goal is to board more than 15,000 selected guests including construction managers, contractors, consulting ...
Few industries can draw a direct correlation between success and their facilities. But in pharmaceutical, biotech and medical research operations, there is a close connection between the capabilities of one's laboratory and the quality of work. Consistent, reliable system operation is crucial to the integrity of research—and to the corporate profits that discoveries can create.
New England Patriots fans are known for their loyalty. For years they braved the elements in Foxboro Stadium, where aluminum bleacher seating was the norm and "conveniences" were defined as rows of portable toilets in the concourses. That loyalty was finally rewarded last fall, when team owner Robert Kraft opened the doors of Gillette Stadium.
A World Without Wires?
Communications and networking experts offer a glimpse into the current state of wireless technology—common applications, relevant codes and standards and obstacles to more widespread use. CSE: Compared with more conventional cabling, what are some of the advantages—and disadvantages—of wireless? CALOZ: When designing a voice or data network, the considerations are application,...
Green: A State of Mind
Just about every building project these days is looking at green building products and systems. But it can be difficult to evaluate and determine just how "green" a product really is, or what is a green product for that matter. While the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system has, in general, helped familiarize many engineers with the co...
Fields of Dreams?
Football is one of the most obvious signs of the coming of fall. Starting the day after the Super Bowl, diehard fans eagerly count the weeks until such milestones as the draft, training camp and the first Monday Night Football game. But recently, some fans have had something else to look forward to—the opening of brand new, high-tech stadiums.
All in 1 Package?
While engineers and contractors have traditionally pieced together a facility's electrical system utilizing equipment from different manufacturers, in some cases, the option of choosing pre-integrated systems has become a possibility—for example, gensets, switchgear and controls all in one package.
Industrial Strength Backup for a “Factory” Casino
With the look of a 1940s factory, the Cannery Hotel and Casino, North Las Vegas, Nev., which opened in January of this year, is small by Las Vegas Strip standards. But the $105 million, 50,000-sq.-ft. complex still features 1,278 slot machines, 20 game tables, an indoor/outdoor entertainment venue and 201 guest rooms.
Protecting the National Power Grid
Energy department investigators will require some time in pinpointing exact causes for the largest blackout in U.S. history on Thursday afternoon, Aug. 14. After all, an investigation of a 1996 outage in the western United States that knocked out power to four million customers took two months to complete.
Engineers hoping for work in the previously bustling airport market now face a classic bad news/good news scenario. The bad news: Airports are still primarily focused on security issues raised by the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. The good news: Addressing those security issues is forcing airport authorities and airlines to rethink virtually every other system in their facilities.
Staying in business as an M/E engineering firm, especially in today's economic climate, is no small feat. Staying in business for 70-plus years, however, must mean you've really got a formula for success. In compiling our annual Giants ranking of top engineering firms by M/E revenue, four particular firms merit extra attention: the SmithGroup and HarleyEllis, both of Detroit; Syska Hennessy Gro...
Working with the Authority Having Jurisdiction
Wouldn't it be great if we could just practice our profession without interruption—just do the engineering, supervise the work and turn the system over to the owner? But the law complicates things—and with good reason, of course. We apply for construction permits, inspections and certificates of occupancy for new construction and alterations.
Members of Congress and several construction industry organizations are pushing for tighter restrictions on the behavior of federal contractors. The Project on Government Oversight (POGO), an independent, non-profit watchdog, recently found 70 instances of misconduct and alleged misconduct perpetrated by some of the top 10 federal contractors.
Are You Experienced?
Two issues ago, we covered the museum market, and between then and now, I actually got out to visit a few institutions, including the Experience Music Project (EXP) in Seattle. The building, for those unaware, is another of Frank Gehry's undulating, metal-clad creations. This one's even multi-colored! Now I've never been a big Gehry fan—I was basically of the opinion that he came up with ...
Minnesota ‘Re-hires’ Consulting Engineers
The clock ran out on Minnesota's moratorium on government consulting contracts June 30, and after much debate, state legislators chose not to extend the ban. In our November, 2002 issue, CSE reported that Minnesota had suspended consulting contracts, a move which reduced work for M/E engineers in that state.
Rising to the Occasion
Since the late 19th century, when the first skyscrapers sprouted up in Chicago and New York, those two metropolises have been competing with each other for bragging rights to the world's tallest buildings. Both cities, with their familiar skylines, truly set the tone for what we think of as the epitome of the American central business district.
A Warmer Type of Art Museum
The Milwaukee Art Museum (MAM), located right on Lake Michigan, boasts a collection of nearly 20,000 works—no small holdings. The facility became even more impressive recently with the opening of a 140,000 sq. ft. expansion. Designed by Spanish-born A/E and sculptor Santiago Calatrava, the expansion includes the Quadracci Pavilion, a 90-ft.
Get the Idea . . .
On many projects, lighting responsibilities fall to the electrical engineer. Depending on the talent and experience of the engineer, that can be a good thing, or it can be an extra and sometimes onerous duty. "There's just so much product out there that it's hard for an electrical engineer to keep on top of," says Shawn Good, P.
Shedding Light on Efficiency
In the quest to achieve the ever-efficient office lighting environment, both ASHRAE and the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) are pushing the envelope to encourage lighting designers and building owners to continually improve lighting efficiency levels. For example, ASHRAE 90.1 2001—which in 2004 will become the default guideline for states that do not adopt their own energy co...
Water Woes a Barrier to Overcome
Although difficult to believe after a winter of snows and a spring of record rains in the Northeast, water shortages had a significant impact on development in many regions of the country in the summer of 2001. The concern over dwindling water reserves and continuing drought-like conditions spurred the city of Frederick, Md.
There’s Something in the Water
When it comes to potable water for commercial facilities, for the most part, no additional treatment is required or provided between the local water utility and the facility. Unless you've got a filtered water cooler, what you get from the spigot is what you drink. One exception to this is in healthcare facilities.
NERC Acts on Electronic Security Concerns
The North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) has unveiled a proposed standard that is designed to address security concerns raised by sometimes-aging transmission and distribution computer systems. Member organizations would have through the first quarter of 2004 to follow through on the standard's requirements.
Science Museum Stats
From the ASTC (Association of Science and Technology Centers) Sourcebook of Science Center Statistics 2002: For more information, visit www.astc.org.
Tourism is one of the industries still suffering from the economic downturn resulting from the tragic events of Sept. 11, 2001. Museums, particularly, are feeling that trickle-down effect. In fact, a front-page article in the Art Newspaper this past January declared an end to the art museum building boom, citing a series of projects in Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, New York and San Francisco t...
Performance-Based Design: An International Perspective
Internationally speaking, the world community's perspective on performance-based design is, well, on fire. In a conference session on protecting iconic structures, topics ranged from how to design buildings that suffer minimal damage from explosions to the importance of professional associations in developing and maintaining a safe built environment.
The Power of Entertainment
Themed entertainment provides electrical engineers with the unique opportunity to think outside the electrical design "box." These projects challenge designers and contractors to confront and solve problems that they previously had never encountered. And it is accomplished within a highly themed environment and with very stringent budgets.
Life Safety Upgrades for a Classic Colorado Hotel
The Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs is one of the state's historic jewels and an enduring classic among luxury accommodations. Opened in 1918, the Broadmoor has provided respite to presidents, statesmen, celebrities and sports figures. Last year, the hotel underwent a $75 million renovation, including major upgrades to the life-safety systems.
Monolithic. Blocky. Cold. These are all words that jump to mind when one thinks of prisons and jails. And most people are probably guilty of categorizing these facilities as relatively simple structures—concrete or stone boxes. But in reality, prisons and jails are much more than guard towers and razor wire.
Avoid the Dot-Com Disaster: Manage Risk Properly
Much has been written about the demise of the "new economy" and the return to the old. The fact is that while the new economy—exemplified by the dot-com bubble of the '90s—enjoyed the spotlight for a few years, the old economy never really died. It was only pushed to the footlights, while business pundits and young executives exercised new options for operating their businesses.
NFPA 5000 Is Making Headway, Slowly
The need for a unified building code has long been desired, but until recently, had not been met. Fortunately, the advent of NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) 5000, Building Construction and Safety Code, as well as the International Building Code (IBC), filled this void (see "NYC Considers IBC on the Eve of 2003 Revision," CSE 02/03 p.
Fire in the Jailhouse
On April 21, 1930, the deadliest correctional facility fire in U.S. history ravaged the Ohio State Penitentiary in Columbus, killing more than 300 men. Ever since that time, the National Fire Protection Association's Life Safety Code (NFPA 101) and other model codes have required new and existing correctional facilities to be constructed of limited- or non-combustible materials, and to be provi...
Lighting the Way for G.I. Joe’s
No one really notices if the ambient lighting in a "big box" retail store is successful. And that's just how Dave Fouts likes it. Fouts is the vice president of planning and logistics for G.I. Joe's, a popular Northwest retailer of sports and auto accessories. "Customers only notice lighting when it's too dark, too bright or lamps are burned out," says Fouts.
Healthcare Costs: Hold the Line
Healthcare is a two-edged sword for engineering firms these days. As our cover story (p. 34) attests, the sector, without question, is a red-hot, seemingly recession-proof economic engine for those in the AEC community. At the same time, according to design industry analyst ZweigWhite Assocs., providing healthcare coverage for their employees is one of the biggest challenges facing many AEC firms.
Last year the American Hospital Assn. (AHA) reported that there are currently 900 fewer hospitals in the United States than there were in 1980, so it's no surprise that demand for new or improved facilities is hot. "I've been involved in the healthcare market for 40 years, and I've never seen such a strong market in my life," says Robert Levine, a vice president with Turner Health Care, Nashvil...
BAS’ Future: Enterprise Software?
Fans of NCAA Basketball's March Madness are likely familiar with Microsoft's series of television commercials espousing the virtues of business enterprise software. For example, in one spot, a middle-aged salesman is showing a new employee the inside of one of the company's warehouses: "When I was first hired, we didn't have all these fancy integrated systems.
Manufacturing Survey: Crisis May be Coming Soon
Representatives from the National Association of Manufacturers, at the recent National Manufacturing Week show in Chicago, announced the results of a survey of their membership. The responses were not encouraging.
Codes and the Real World
It is strange and unfortunate how reality has a tendency to make its way into the best—and worst—of plans. In assembling this university-themed issue, one of our offerings addresses trends in dormitory design, including sprinklers, but also the notion of voice evacuation as an egress tool for people unfamiliar with a particular building or facility (see "Graduate Degree Dorms," p.
Midterm Exam: C-
Although it's not uncommon for engineering students to spend more time hitting the books than their peers in liberal arts or the college of business, a surprising number of professional M/E/P engineers feel many engineering programs might be better off borrowing some of the curricula of their academic brethren.
Jersey City a Gem for Industrial Clients
A state plan to encourage urban redevelopment has sparked an interest in northern N.J., and companies are taking a second look at Jersey City. Developer and builder Thomas Barrett takes a look at that area's industrial market, in anticipation of our February issue's industrial-market focus.
Bush Administration Pushes for Hydrogen
During his State of the Union Address last month, President Bush announced the Fuel Cell Initiative, with $1.2 billion in new funding for fuel cell research.
Canadian Roadmap for Building Automation
The Continental Automated Building Association (CABA), Ottawa, Canada, and the Canadian government has announced the completion of the Technology Roadmap (TRM) for Intelligent Buildings.
PowerGen Hints at Industrial Trends
The comments of exhibitors and attendees at the recent PowerGen International show in Orlando revealed quite a bit about the industrial big picture. Distributed generation (DG) and cogeneration remained hot topics but are still obstructed by a number of barriers, particularly the IEEE 547 interconnection standard.
Warming Up with the Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns Stadium plays host to more than 73,000 football fans during home games. Down on the playing field, winning may be more of a challenge at this point for the fledgling franchise than it was when Jim Brown, Otto Graham and Lou Groza were running, passing and kicking their way to victory.
Feds Get Tough on California Water Use
After years of excessive water use in California and a lack of a conservation plan, the federal government has responded sternly by officially reducing the flow of surplus water to the state from the Colorado River. If California can agree upon a formal plan to reduce its water consumption by 2015, as it pledged to the Clinton administration, the Dept.
HVAC: The Next Generation
Variable-air-volume systems came into favor primarily as a result of the energy concerns of the early 1970s. While they did wonders for that period, the 21st Century needs a new technology that overcomes the limitations of the old. That new technology may already be in place. As an HVAC strategy incorporating a dedicated outside-air source, radiant cooling and heat recovery promises to not on...
Progress report: Has shown significant growth, and despite temporary setbacks, continues to move forward. Has some trouble with general math but showing great signs of improvement. Demonstrating great use of innovative design and technology but sometimes needs to work better with others. Increased population, record school bond referendums, improvements to bidding processes and greater accept...
New Products – 2003-01-01
Security lighting is available in an 8-in. housing for metal halide and high pressure sodium lamps and in 12-in. housings for MH, HPS, PSMH and fluorescents. The reflector projects the beam out and away from the fixture, for illuminating small parking lots and areas close to a building. (SE4 series by Ruud) Reader Service RS #1 Wireless alarm panel facilitates fire detection where wiring is ...
Briefly … – 2003-01-01
U.S. construction spending rose 0.3% in November to a $843.2 billion rate, according to the Commerce Dept. The surprise gain follows an upwardly revised figure for October, and may result in more optimistic estimates for the fourth quarter of 2002. Wireless Internet access may pose a threat to the functioning of military radar, say U.
A Bigger Box?
For those of you living in regions where it's cold this time of year, I'm sure you've experienced a snowfall at some point this winter. And true to my sometimes curmudgeonly manner, I loathe snow. But so far this season, this has not been the case. In fact, I must confess that the few snowfalls we've had have been very refreshing.
LonMark Reaches for Europe
The LonMark Interoperability Association has formed a European Marketing Task Group to represent the interests of its European members to the LonMark board of directors.
Fuel Cells Revisited
The Connecticut Juvenile Training School in Middletown, Conn., for a while this year, boasted the world's large single-site fuel-cell power plant, with six 200-kW fuel cells powering a central plant for 227,000 sq. ft. of space on the campus. Completed in 2001 at a total cost of $49 million, the school hosts approximately 240 boys, sentenced to the facility as a result of convictions in juvenil...
Keep the Faith
An unfortunate engineer and an economist travelling in South America on business were captured for ransom by a group of rebels. After two weeks and no response, the rebel leader informed the pair that they would be executed. As was tradition, a last request was proffered. The economist noted he was on his way to present a five-year forecast to executives at a locally based corporation when he w...
A New Northwest Passage
Despite its being a major hub of the nation's fourth-largest airline, Northwest Airlines, Detroit's Metropolitan Airport had long lagged on services and support compared to other such flagship facilities. Cramped spaces and limited concessions made travel both inconvenient and unpleasant. But the McNamara Terminal/Northwest WorldGateway, which opened last February, goes a long way toward addre...
The Power of Mardi Gras
The world famous Rio Carnival is a four-night event that requires more than 8 megawatts of rental power. As big as the Super Bowl and Mardi Gras combined, the centerpiece of the event is a nightly parade through the Sambodrome—an entertainment venue the size of eight football fields—in downtown Rio de Janeiro.
Fortune 5000 Execs on the Kyoto Protocol
Although opinions about the Kyoto Protocol—the international treaty addressing global warming—are split among Fortune 5000 executives, the majority of these business leaders support many of the provisions within the protocol, according to American Viewpoint, a Washington, D.C.-based Republican polling firm.
Where Design-Build Dominates
Health-care facilities, commercial buildings, hotels and stadiums appear to be the hottest markets for design-build delivery, according to a recent survey conducted by the Natick, Mass.-based market research firm ZweigWhite. Compared to the results of a 1997 survey, the amount of design-build projects for the medical facilities market jumped from 15% to 46% this year, hotel design-build project...
Briefly … – 2002-10-01
ASHRAE's BACnet building controls protocol is now being considered for adoption as a standard by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the European Committee for Standardization. In December, both organizations will vote on whether to adopt BACnet. Fortune 5000 business executives espoused their views on the Kyoto Protocol in a recent market survey, with 34% supporting i...
Rising from the Depths
Arguably one of the most visually dramatic and prestigious locations for an office building—literally several hundred feet out into San Francisco's east bay—Pier 1, a turn-of-the-century warehouse, formerly relegated to duty as a parking garage, is now one of the city's newest and most unusual office developments.
Motor Decisions Do Matter
With significant opportunities for energy and cost savings, not to mention environmental benefits, the Boston-based Consortium for Energy Efficiency’s Motor Decisions Matter campaign has continued to promote the benefits of premium-efficiency motors.
Missouri and Kansas Scrimmage Over HOK Sport Headquarters
Economic-development officials in Kansas are teaming up against Missouri rivals to lure Kansas City, Mo.-based HOK Sport + Venue + Entertainment (HOK-SVE) across the state line to nearby Overland Park, Kan.
In the not so distant past, the design of sports arenas was not so complicated. Primarily, they housed events during winter months, so there was little need for air conditioning. Few provisions were made for TV broadcasting, and flexible power distribution systems or event lighting systems were limited considerations.
Court Decision Threatens Code Developers’ Copyrights
Building codes enter the public domain once they've been adopted by a local jurisdiction, according to a recent decision of the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals. In Veeck v. Southern Building Code Congress International (SBCCI), the court ruled in favor of Texan Peter Veeck, who posted SBCCI's building codes on his web site after the code had been adopted by his local municipality.
The Many Advantages of Fabric Duct
Delivering a wide range of installation and operating benefits, fabric duct has slowly been finding its way into a number of projects involving open spaces, such as food processing plants, supermarkets, indoor swimming pool facilities, gymnasiums and convention centers. As an alternative to traditional metal ductwork—which often requires dozens of grills and diffusers for air distribution...
BAS Flies Standby
Most discussions of building automation systems (BAS) and power are usually about energy efficiency—how to use BAS to monitor and control overall power consumption in a facility, making more efficient use of power, and thereby cutting costs. But often overlooked is the role that BAS plays in centralized control of backup-power systems, which is more of a security issue than energy-efficie...
Powered Up for Non-Stop Info
The LexisNexis data center in Miamisburg, Ohio, operates 24 hours a day to supply 2.6 million subscribers with legal, corporate, government and academic information. The 45,000-sq.-ft. facility has hundreds of mainframes, servers, workstations and storage devices. Jerry Zahora, consulting systems engineer at LexisNexis, faced a huge task: The only exception to the center's round-the-clock servi...
Industry Loses Fire-Protection Pioneer Rolf Jensen
The M/E engineering community experienced a big loss last month with the passing of fire-protection pioneer Rolf W. Jensen, P.E. Throughout his professional career of over 50 years, Jensen achieved many notable accomplishments including: founding his own fire-protection and code consulting firm, Rolf Jensen & Associates; chairing Chicago Mayor Richard J.
Run the Ball
Alan Greenspan denied it. George Bush denied it: America was not in a recession in 2001. Those in the construction industry surely suspected otherwise, and recently revised figures from the U.S. Dept. of Commerce confirm that suspicion. Instead of the solid 3.3% gain originally reported by the federal agency, overall nonresidential construction spending is now estimated to have increased by a s...
Cogeneration, also known as combined heat and power, is the simultaneous production and utilization of power and heat, typically in the form of electricity and either steam or hot water. Because the heat generated by the production of electricity is captured and utilized—and not expelled as waste heat—successful cogeneration results in a much higher fuel efficiency and lower energy ...
DOE Awards Energy Efficiency Grants
A total of $44.5 million will be awarded this year nationwide to fund energy-efficiency and renewable energy programs in every state, compliments of the U.S. Department of Energy.
New Products – 2002-07-01
Lightning arrestor with TVSS component combines category-C and -B protection in one unit, reducing the number of downstream TVSS devices required. The unit protects against both lightning strikes and switching-type transients. (Combotrab by Phoenix Contact) Reader Service (RS) # 1 Capacitor banks for power factor correction are available for 240 volts to 115 kV, and for kVAR ratings from 1 ...
Energy Solutions for Uncertain Times
Energy concerns, particularly in the form of price spikes over the past few years, have fueled discussion about finding new or alternative sources of energy. On the design side, it has also helped spur the implementation of cutting-edge sustainable technologies like fuels cells or solar panels into new buildings.
Forum Extols the Virtues of Energy Efficiency
Energy conservation, environmental concerns and economic growth were the main agenda when more than 350 industry, government and environmental leaders gathered in Washington, D.C., at a recent energy efficiency forum. Among the speakers at the event, "Evolution of the Energy Economy: Ensuring Security and Stability," U.
Briefly … – 2002-07-01
The nation's electric power grid, telecommunications and computer network infrastructure are the most vulnerable to terrorist attack and therefore require increased security, concludes a recent report released by the National Research Council. The council, which is part of the National Academy of Sciences, also reported on security for nuclear and biological threats; information technology; ene...
People In the News – 2002-06-01
A new leadership team has been introduced for The Durrant Group, Phoenix. Gordon Mills, FAIA, will serve as chairman of the board and chief executive officer. Joining Mills on the management team will be Charles Marsden, P.E., as president and chief operating officer, and Joseph Trannel as secretary, treasurer and vice president, director of finance …Syska Hennessy Group, New York, has...
The latest projections by the U.S. Energy Information Administration show United States energy consumption rising more quickly than previously thought over the next two years, primarily due to higher commercial and transportation demands. The 2002 Annual Energy Outlook forecasts that energy demand in 2020 will be some 4 quadrillion BTUs higher than last year's report anticipated.
Halon Replacements Still a Hot Topic
The "right" replacement agent for Halon remains a source of competition among fire-protection manufacturers, particularly now that Europe is switching over and the U.S. is right behind. At the NFPA Conference in Minneapolis in May, 3M, based in nearby St. Paul, Minn., unveiled a product they believe to be the closest clean agent to Halon yet.
California’s Wise Use
California businesses and facility owners have responded to the energy crisis in productive ways: They are conserving energy and creating efficiencies that have greatly reduced power consumption in California during this last year. Rather than just calling for greater generating capacity—no matter how "dirty" the power—in many cases, they are figuring out ways to become efficient, a...
Canada Expands Energy-Efficiency Programs
In support of greater energy efficiency for facilities and a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, the Canadian government has established a new Industrial Building Incentive program and an expanded Commercial Building Incentive program offering subsidies to facilities demonstrating efficiencies of at least 25% greater than Model National Energy Code for Buildings standards.
Visionary System Lights the Way
In CSE's May issue, consulting editor Al Borden wrote about the advent of modern lighting-control systems, and this Deep Link offers a high-tech example: the new Vulcan, Inc. headquarters in Seattle.
Lighting controls and protocols enable end users to maximize the use of lighting, while minimizing energy bills
Professional Practices: Insurance Carriers Put Less of a Premium on Fire Protection Engineering
Insurance carriers have traditionally had a major influence on fire protection design, but recently, the amount and quality of their fire protection services are diminishing.
Insurance Carriers Put Less of a Premium on Fire Protection Engineering
Regardless of whether owners or designers welcomed it, insurance carriers have traditionally had a major influence on fire protection design. Based on knowledge accumulated for more than a century, the insurance industry built a stable of fire protection experts, including engineers, who could offer solutions to complex design problems.
Fight the Good (Green) Fight
As you read this, Earth Day will have already passed, but its spirit, I would hope, carries on through the rest of the year. Depending on what camp you side with, Earth Day is celebrated March 22, in conjunction with the Vernal Equinox—or April 22—somehow expanding the role of Arbor Day. Either way, the concept remains the same—reflect on the state of our planet and what we mi...
Computational fluid dynamic modeling cements life safety and constructability, setting the table for another Smithsonian smash hit
ASHRAE Promotes the Use of Ammonia
Promoting the use of ammonia as a refrigerant in air conditioning and refrigeration applications, the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) has released a refrigeration position document.
JFK International Airport Project Nets Award
The redesign and construction of the JFK International Terminal 4 earned the Grand Conceptor Award in the 36th annual Engineering Excellence Awards competition sponsored by the American Council of Engineering Companies.
Water Infrastructure Funding May Be Insufficient
Funding slated for U.S. drinking water and wastewater infrastructure, as dictated by the Bush administration's fiscal year 2003 budget, may fall short of what's really needed, according to a recent statement released by the Water Infrastructure Network.
NFPA and ASHRAE to Develop Energy Code
The National Fire Protection Agency and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) have announced an agreement to collaborate on the development of an energy code, which will include ASHRAE Energy Standards 90.1 and 90.2.
Roundtable Redux: BAS Retrofits
The M/E Roundtable in CSE's March 2002 issue focused on the past, present and future of BAS technology. These projects, offered by some of our panelists, display some of the potential of BAS in retrofit projects.
Is DG for Everybody?
Everyone seems to want everyone else to get involved in distributed generation (DG). And many organizations, agencies and public officials have been on the bandwagon lately, the following being but a few examples:Owners, consulting engineers and installation contractors can build a power plant on a company's site, but all must ask whether it is the wise choice.
Front-End Help Against Power Shortages
In waste management, there have been two major ways to reduce the volume of waste flowing to a landfill: recycling some of it, or designing products that have less material to dispose of. Now, the same thing appears to be happening in the electrical industry. Consider these recent developments:Arthur D.
Energize America Connects Energy Users with Energy-Efficient Providers
In order to help promote energy efficiency in buildings, the Energize America Educational Institute (EAEI) has launched a new Internet portal to help connect energy users with energy service companies, manufacturers of energy-efficient products, environmental government agencies and sources of project financing.
Specifying Ends and Means
The term performance-based is commonly used to describe codes and standards that seek to define the purpose and scope of a building system, without specifically prescribing its details. Performance-based specifying pushes the concept a step further, using it to describe the nature of the actual specification that an engineer writes.
Web Threads – 2002-02-01
A monthly compendium of facts and figures
Multi-Purpose Comfort for Multi-Use Stadium
As the home of four professional sports teams, the Staples Center in Los Angeles can experience up to 10 days each season where multiple events occur on a single day. Therefore, its 35-person crew needs to be able to change the venue from hockey to basketball in less than two hours, including installation or removal of extra seating.
Specifier’s Notebook: Don’t Roll the Dice on Casino Lighting
Modern day casinos are really multipurpose developments that must fulfill a variety of customer needs and desires. Casinos typically deliver the goods through multifaceted entertainment "experiences" that might include rides or shopping in addition to traditional shows, dining and gambling.
Lessons From Ground Zero
The remaining structures in the vicinity of Ground Zero are turning out to be an "engineering clinic of sorts," potentially providing valuable information to engineers and architects about ways to improve the design of skyscrapers, reports the New York Times.
Design-Build Makes Headway in Private Sector
The percentage of nonresidential projects that utilize design-build delivery continues to increase, concludes a recent ZweigWhite survey, most notably medical, commercial and sports/recreation facilities.
The Right to Maneuver
At the crossroads where building codes meet civil rights, it's not too difficult for specifying engineers to lose their sense of direction. The panelists of this month's M/E Roundtable testify to the fact that each building system relates to the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) in different ways.
Bank on it
Global banker Mellon Financial Corporation is no stranger to the shores of the Ohio, Allegheny and Monongahela rivers. In fact, its primary operations were housed for years in a cluster of facilities in downtown Pittsburgh, the heart of this "Golden Triangle." The separate high-rise structures, however, did not mesh well with a key functional requirement of Mellon's modern banking operati...
Value Engineering: Mistaken Identity?
Our December "Specifier's Notebook" continues the discussion on the value of value engineering.
M/E Roundtable: The Right to Maneuver
A look at today's ADA issues as they relate to building systems
Caution: Turbulent Waters Ahead
It had to end sometime, but we'd all rather it had gone out with a whimper than a bang. The nation's decade-long run of good economic luck—historians will record it as America's longest period of economic prosperity—has come to an abrupt halt. And now the best that can be reasonably hoped for is that the nation is in the middle of—not just beginning—the current p...
Birds Doing What They Do
Birds of prey are "the chief perpetrators" of power failure for 7 million customers of Florida Power & Light, according to a report from Knight-Ridder News Service. Among the culprits are red-tailed hawks, turkey vultures, eagles and ospreys that perch on electric utility towers. "The big birds have big droppings.
The sun, of course, lies literally at the center of our solar system. Figuratively, one could also say it lies at the center of our universe. And although the sun is approximately 93 million miles away from Earth, it bestows upon us more energy—in the form of light and heat—than we could ever possibly need.
The Remote Possibilities of Fiber-Optics
While fiber optics are revolutionizing the communications industry, their adoption into general lighting applications have been slow at best, especially in the U.S. The reasons behind this lack of exploration are varied, with the most common factors being a high initial cost, a general lack of standardized data and difficulty of simply finding quality components.
NYC Arts Developers Worry about Funding
With the city of New York dedicating tremendous manpower and financial resources to World Trade Center recovery efforts, the city's arts leaders and developers have expressed concern about current a future cultural projects.
Bill Challenges Low-Flow Toilets
In another attempt to amend federal water conservation that limit end-users to 1.6 gallon-per-flush toilets, a bill has been reintroduced proposing to legalize traditional 3.5 gallon-per-flush toilets.
Fuel Cells: Standby Power’s Future?
Today's integrated transmission system, sometimes called the "infinite busbar system," allows numerous utility power plants to be paralleled on line. Providing an enormous reservoir of power, this system has, historically, resulted in reasonably stable supplies that operate within set tolerances.
Making the Most of Fuels
In light of recent energy shortages in various areas of the country, end users are searching for new ways to not only save on energy costs, but to recycle waste energy. In this month's M/E Roundtable, engineers discuss the trends and issues end users must understand when considering cogeneration or trigeneration systems.
Optical Fiber in Search of Users
Even though close to 100 million miles of optical fiber has been laid around the word in the last two years, only 5% of the fiber in the ground is currently being utilized, reported the New York Times in a recent issue.
Maximizing Your Role in the Call Center Growth Market
Call centers continue to proliferate as corporate America continues to make the customer the central focus of its business strategy. In fact, many call centers are becoming the physical manifestation of a corporate philosophy know as customer relationship management (CRM).But does the physical structure of such a facility affect how all employees deal with customers? Are there ways buildi...
New York Prioritizes Energy Efficiency
In an effort to prioritize energy efficiency, the governor of New York recently issued an executive order which mandates that state agencies purchase at least 10 percent of their energy from renewable sources by 2005, and 20 percent by 2010.
Back to "Build it Green" Numerous organizations, including non-profits, governmental, special interest, and professional, represent the interests of those involved in the 'green building' industry. Some of the better-known organizations include: Association for Environment Conscious Building (United Kingdom) The AECB publishes information on environmental choice products and services in its directory entitled Greener Building. First published in 1992, it is produced in a loose-leaf format, which can be easily updated as new editions are published.
A Call for More Water and Wastewater Funding
The federal government has been called upon to help address a $23 billion shortage of funds every year that is needed to maintain the nation's water and wastewater infrastructure. The Water Infrastructure Network (WIN)—a coalition of elected officials, manufacturers and construction and engineering professionals—has asked for $57 billion in federal investments over the next five y...
Computer design & project management products
With an abundance of computer-aided design (CAD) and Web-based project management tools, M/E firms are increasingly finding it difficult to choose from an ever-growing selection of software packages. These trends are not only uncovering thorny management and business issues (see "Professional Practices," page 21), but also changing the way that software businesses operate and distribute their ...
Before the Doors Open
Designing attractions for theme parks presents a fun and interesting set of challenges
Seeing Hoover Dam in a Whole New Light
One of the nation's most impressive national landmarks just became even more energy-efficient and aesthetically appealing, thanks to a recent lighting retrofit. For the past 30 years, Hoover Dam, a massive man-made structure saddling Nevada and Arizona across the Colorado River, has sported a yellowish glow—a result of high-pressure sodium fixtures.
When the Power Goes Out
Exactly what happens when utility power supply becomes unreliable? It's a question that those in the power-reliability business have dealt with on a one-at-a-time basis. In the late 1990s, many of the answers were based on suppositions.Suddenly, however, a mega-case study has appeared: California.
New Mexico DG Project Networks Standby Units
When completed, a project in New Mexico that links distributed-generation assets—including standby generators—will provide 25 MW of "dispatchable" peaking power to Public Service Company of New Mexico.Industrial and commercial concerns with standby generators will join a network, put together by Portland, Ore.
Passing the Power Baton: Distributed Generation is in the Race
With rolling blackouts in California, rising electricity and natural gas prices, soaring demand for power and concerns about the viability of electric restructuring, one technological development promises to change the very underpinning of the electric industry: distributed generation (DG).A computer-based culture requires that electricity be delivered constantly and within very tight ran...
Fresh Approaches to New Needs
Continuous change in needs and technology are a constant part of building design and engineered systems. As new demands are dictated by building occupants, owners and government institutions, different approaches step in to fill the need. Simultaneously, developments in technology bring expectations of building-system performance to continuously higher levels.
Art Preservation Through Better IAQ
The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston finds a better way of solving its IAQ problems.
Going Beyond “Potty Parity” in Chicago
Along with a host of changes now being adopted by the city of Chicago's plumbing code, the number of toilets in newly constructed or substantially retrofitted large venues has essentially doubled.
Performance-based fire-safety design, still in its infancy in the United States, has created an environment in which more architects, engineers and building owners are asking, "Is it safe?" rather than, "Does it comply with code?" This was the original intent of performance-based design and it appears to be successful in its initial stages.
Energy to Spare
Energy efficiency was the focus of opening remarks at this year's American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) Winter Meeting. ASHRAE officials discussed the effectiveness of the current ASHRAE Standard 90.1-1999, "Energy Standard for Buildings Except Low-Rise Residential Buildings," and the need to both simplify requirements and push for greater energy co...
Dynamic Lighting for a Kinetic Environment
When Sega GameWorks, a chain of dining and entertainment facilities, opened its first site in Seattle, the concept for the lighting design was to create an atmosphere of arcade entertainment combined with dining and music experiences. Plans were also made to use the same at facilities to be opened in Las Vegas and Ontario, Calif.
M/E Roundtable: Energy to Spare
Volatile energy costs are making efficiency the watchword in HVAC systems design
The National Fire Protection Association's (NFPA) World Fire Safety Congress and Exposition comes to Anaheim, Calif., this year, commencing Friday, May 11, with pre-Congress seminars. Educational seminars on a variety of topics, including an update on NFPA 5000, begin on Sunday. Throughout the week, sessions focus on performance-based design, designing for health-care environments, the NFPA ...
New Products & Literature – 2001-04-01
The latest in building-system componentry from the pages of our April issue.
Humidity Counts—In the Right Amounts
Planning ahead for humidity control can save facilities from a number of IAQ problems
Sustainability: From the pages of Building Design and Construction magazine, this article outlines the design of a university building that is aiming to produce more energy than it consumes.
Lighting for the Masses
Effective lighting design for airports and stadiums emphasizes strategic lamp choices and fixture locations
High-Speed Cabling for Engineers
The new headquarters of engineering firm Brown & Caldwell in Walnut Creek, Calif., is a design-build project that boasts a sophisticated, high-speed structured cabling system.The enhanced Category 5 system includes a one-gigabyte backbone and provides a high-speed 100-megabyte throughput to each desktop in a local area network comprised of 300 stations.
Life-Cycle Cost Is Key to Zero Waste
The nature and impact of "pollution" is dependent upon the type of project; listing the sources and methods to reduce them is less important than knowing how to develop an approach that will be truly successful.When a client charges a design firm with maximizing environmental sustainability, the first step the designer should take is to clearly and quantitatively define the client's objectives.
Zero Waste and Green Buildings
Leading engineers discuss strategies for minimizing industrial and commercial sources of pollution
Utility Ends Dereg Deal
More than two years ago, municipal utility Seattle City Light signed a two-year deal to supply electricity to all 38 Nordstrom stores in the state of California. However, the utility has refused to renew the deal, which expires in March 2001, "largely because we don't see a prospect of having surplus energy beyond our system requirements," a city official told The Seattle Times.
New Products & Literature – 2001-03-01
The latest in building-system componentry from our March issue.
Green Lights for Greenbelt
Designed to complement its natural setting and provide flexible, functional space, the Greenbelt Cultural Center is a 7,300-square-foot multipurpose facility for the Lake County Forest Preserve District in Waukegan, Ill.
Visit the New C-SE Online—a Growing Resource
Consulting-Specifying Engineer's (C-SE) home page on the Web, www.csemag.com, has been redesigned and improved to offer more engineering tools and content. Visit the site to find these improvements: Full-length feature articles. C-SE has added all of its coverage from the magazine to its site, giving our readers the chance to read our content from anywhere.
Major Trends in the Security Industry
January: Security A major security-component developer offers a look at recent movements in the market.
O ur Deep Links' section offers Web-only articles and collections of links. Visit here every month to find supplementary technical, manufacturer and product information related to specific stories. Deep Links' ArticlesImportant Links Deep Links: Interoperable Controls Our June issue featured some 'field reports' on the progress of interoperable controls, and this group of web links offers some follow-up information. 2D or 3D: Do You Really Have to Choose? Following up on our May M/E Roundtable on CAD development, this Deep Link from Autodesk offers thoughts on 'model-based design.' Visionary System Lights the Way In CSE's May issue, consulting editor Al Borden wrote about the advent of modern lighting-control systems, and this Deep Link offers a high-tech example: the new Vulcan, Inc. headquarters in Seattle. Fast Schedules for Laboratory Projects Participants in our April M/E Roundtable discussed the design challenges of modern laboratories.
EPA Forms Chiller Partnership
With one eye on the environment and the other on energy-efficiency, 18 government agencies, corporations and professional and environmental organizations from around the world have teamed up under the leadership of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to form the Building Air Conditioner Climate Partnership.
New Products & Literature – 2001-02-01
New building-system components from the pages of our February issue
A Mechanical Room of Its Own
Before the start-up of a 20,000-square-foot mechanical room, the Myriad Convention Center in Oklahoma City, Okla., received its heating and air-conditioning supply from an outside power-generation provider. Now, the 29-year-old convention center finally has a physical plant of its own.
Keeping Up With the Protocols
Much has been said recently about control-system interoperability by the guardians of the interoperable control languages and the manufacturers that have staked some portion of their future profits on one technology or another. Much as parents might protect an only child, these protocol architects dote on their progeny, vehemently defending them from any critical mention.
M/E Roundtable: Optimal Illumination
A greater recognition of building lighting and its widespread effect on a building's energy efficiency has led to a closer analysis of where-and when-light is shining...
Even though design-build activity continues to grow, a recent Zweig White & Associates (ZWA) survey concludes that there is little evidence suggesting design-build will ever become the project delivery method of choice in the industry.
Targeting High-Voltage Transmission
While electric supply and reliability continue to grab news headlines, a new study shows that the high-voltage transmission grid has become "gridlocked in a tangle of infrastructure problems and regulatory uncertainty," according to Cambridge Research Associates, Cambridge, Mass.
Promoting Performance-Based Design-at Home
As the leader among industrialized countries in fire death rates, the United States is lagging significantly behind other nations in the adoption of performance-based fire-safety practices, according to a recent report released by the Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) Center for Firesafety Studies, Worcester, Mass.
Security has become a part of every organization-large or small-and security systems have become an integral part of security programs. Such programs consist of people, policy and hardware. Technologically, the ability to cost-effectively monitor and document activity complements a security program. A typica...
M/E Roundtable: Cooling Data and Dot-Coms
As data centers, clean manufacturing and telecommunications come to dominate many an engineer's design work, unique issues are impacting heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems. From air purity and cable management to thermal decay and fire suppression, mechanical designers must...
Cooling Data and Dot-Coms
As data centers, clean manufacturing and telecommunications come to dominate many an engineer's design work, unique issues are impacting heating, ventilation and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems. From air purity and cable management to thermal decay and fire suppression, mechanical designers must smooth technical snags and hold down installed costs.
Questioning Project Web Sites
Design professionals know the fees that they earn for construction administration rarely compensate them for the time spent and headaches incurred. An exciting, but controversial tool for construction administration is the project Web site.
One of the best compliments one can give to the team members who designed the new Wayne County Juvenile Detention Facility in Detroit is that most people don't know it is there. Even though the facility is located in the downtown "criminal justice area," it is also across the street from a residential neighborhood.
Taking Exterior Illumination to Task
Finding quality design in outdoor lighting has often been a challenge, but a growing recognition of exterior environments is bringing a change in this trend. The standard lighting fixtures around buildings rate-for the most part-poorly when it comes to light pollution, trespass and illlumination quality.
New products & literature – 2000-11-01
Combined plumbing/fire-sprinkler system is based on a stainless-steel four-port fitting attached to the sprinkler head. Cold-water manifolds feed the 1/2-in. tubing directly to the fitting, while remaining outlets on the fittings are used to feed other sprinkler heads or cold-water plumbing fixtures.
Putting a Face on Engineering
While the building and construction industry is well aware of engineers' invaluable work, unfortunately, the same cannot be said for the general public, according to recent polls."Clearly, engineers don't get credit for the magnificent things they do," explains Lee Herring, director of public affairs for the American Consulting Engineers Council, Washington, D.C.
Answering the Central Question
Examples of centralized and distributed strategies permeate our environment. Even our own bodies are arranged with a central cardiopulmonary apparatus, widely distributed sweat glands and regional lymph nodes.
Plumbing the Depths—of ADA and Low-Flow
A panel of noted plumbing engineers and designers discuss major issues in commercial plumbing: code revisions, compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), toilet parity and low-flush technology. Finally, they define what they feel are the major issues in commercial plumbing today in this month's M/E Roundtable.
The ADA Final Rule: Neither Final Nor a Rule
In 1998, the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board (Access Board) issued an amendment to the 1991 Americans with Disabilities Act Accessibility Guidelines (ADAAG) entitled "Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) Accessibility Guidelines for Buildings and Facilities: Building Elements Designed for Children's Use: Final Rule.
A Smattering of Sprinklers
Fire-suppression systems, like most building systems, components and construction materials, continue to take advantage of technological advancements—innovations that improve system performance, expand applications and result in cost savings or additional flexibility for building owners and users.
Mandating Dorm Sprinkler Protection
In response to a number of tragic campus fires that occurred this past year, the state of New Jersey has become the latest to adopt legislation mandating and supporting the installation of sprinkler systems in college housing facilities.Similar to recent initiatives in Chapel Hill, N.C., Durham, N.C., Boulder, Colo. and Lawrence, Kan.