2008 Editorial Preview 


January Features:

Fire Safety for Tall Buildings
Discussion of recent research findings and guidance for high-rise buildings on alarming, sprinklers, smoke control, evacuation, and emergency lighting.

Electrical Systems for Hospitals
When are isolated power systems required for hospitals, what are the design issues involving grounding and selective coordination of fuses and breakers? This article discusses the codes and realities of hospital isolated power systems and provides detailed guidance to designers.

Energy Efficient Data Centers
With data centers consuming 1.5% of total U.S. electricity, and growing, novel approaches are needed to resolve heat-density and energy efficiency issues. This article provides novel methods of cooling and powering data centers.

AMCA's Lab Ventilation Fan Test Standard
The new lab ventilation-fan test standard from the Air Movement and Control Association’s (AMCA) was released in 2007 to settle the uncertainties of induced-flow lab fans. This article describes the important aspects of the standard and illuminates AMCA’s testing laboratory that implement the standard.

Expo Spotlight: AHR Expo
Summary of new and refined products being exhibited at the 2008 Air-Conditioning, Heating, and Refrigeration Expo in New York City.

Codes & Standards: BACnet Update
Discussion of recent updates to the ASHRAE/ANSI standard for BACnet, including HVAC, fire, and lighting.

Equipment Lifestyles: Chillers
From determining whether or not a chiller approach is best to selecting the appropriate type of chiller, to specifying the right size and configuration for lowest-lifecycle cost and least environmental impact, chillers represent an engineering effort representing one of the great achievements of the MEP engineer.

ME Roundtable: Tankless and Storage Water Heaters
What drives the decision to use a tankless water heater or a storage water heater for domestic hot water systems? Engineers share their design and field experience.

February Features:

Fire Safety for Senior Centers
Retiring baby boomers are driving a strong increase in construction and renovations for managed care, non-managed care facilities across the U.S. What should engineers know to make these facilities safe against fires for new construction and renovation?


Mentoring Series: Electrical Design
The Electrical Distribution and Power Engineering installment of a six-part series on training and mentoring engineers. Imparting ethics, values, and technical instruction, this series aims to “train the trainers” and “mentor the mentors” to provide quality leadership and instruction to young engineers.

Feature: How to Write Control Sequences
Control sequences are the sheet music of control systems that orchestrate building operations. Not only for standard operating conditions, but for emergency, start-up, and shut-down situations as well. Engineers often receive little instruction on how to write control sequences, so more often they hand that responsibility to contractors, thereby shrugging off considerable responsibility. This article provides how-to guidance on writing control sequences.

ME Roundtable: Alarm Panels and Mass Notification Systems
The complexity of alarms & panels and their widespread use make this a perennially popular and interesting topic for ME Roundtable.

Equipment Lifestyles: Electrical Enclosures
A box is a box, right? Wrong! Electrical enclosures provide long-term protection and access to sensitive and potentially dangerous electrical gear. Choosing the right enclosure could mean paying more now to pay a lot less later in terms of replacement equipment and safety-related claims.

Codes & Standards: ASHRAE 90.1 and Lighting Controls
The Illuminating Engineers Society (IES) is a co-author of the IES/ASHRAE 90.1 standard for energy efficiency in commercial buildings. But few engineers are aware of the 90.1 specifications for lighting controls. This article seeks to fix that.

March Features:

Feature: Green Schools: HVAC

Schools represent one of largest new-construction and renovation markets and place where future generations are educated and molded into citizens. So let’s make schools the best examples of engineering design for health, comfort, and environmental sustainability. Let’s make schools a place where future engineers are inspired.

Feature: Mentoring Series: Fire Protection

The Fire Protection installment of a six-part series on training and mentoring engineers. Imparting ethics, values, and technical instruction, this series aims to “train the trainers” and “mentor the mentors” to provide quality leadership and instruction to young engineers.


Fine Points of Backup Power and Transfer Switches

Not every good story begins with the basics. This article is a peer-to-peer article on the finer points of designing and specifying systems with standby power generators and transfer switches.

ME Roundtable: Motors/Drives Harmonics
VFDs are great for saving energy, but they can create distortions in power systems and electronic equipment that make them unpopular with owners and operators. Solutions exist, however, in packaged VFDs and in specified “extras.” Engineers are asked to relate their harmonic experiences and how they solved them.

Case Study: Green Schools: HVAC
Schools represent one of largest new-construction and renovation markets and place where future generations are educated and molded into citizens. So let’s make schools the best examples of engineering design for health, comfort, and environmental sustainability. Let’s make schools a place where future engineers are inspired.

Codes & Standards: Plumbing
A look at the important changes in plumbing codes and the issues driving the changes.

Equipment Lifestyles: Fan Systems
Fan systems include the fan, its housing, and the drive motor and motor controller. Providing this integrated perspective enables engineers to carefully consider the lifetime designs parameters for long term optimal performance and economics.

Pure Power:
Power in the Lab
What critical R&D labs are doing to ensure power reliability for sensitive systems.
Heating for Electrical Duct Banks
Electrical heating calculations may need to be performed when large amounts electrical duct banks with significant amounts of conduits and conductors are routed below grade in the earth.
The Future of Monitoring and Metering
Managing power assets on the Internet, and a look at state-of-the-art wired and wireless tools.

April Features:

Feature: Master Planning for Mass-Notification Systems
Campuses are often compared to small cities. Mass notification systems must advise residents, visitors, and staffs toward shelter in diverse settings among diverse circumstances. Weather events, fires, accidental releases of pollutants, and violent attacks must all be anticipated, as well as people who are likely to be disabled, have language or cultural barriers, or be inaccessible to some forms of communication, This article provides an outline for systematic developing a mass-notification system.


Master Planning for Campus Utility Systems

Campus construction is growing market, and quite a bit of effort is being put into modernization of power systems. From identifying and eliminating needless transformers resulting from energy-efficiency enhancements to replacing antiquated switchgear, this case study will have it all!


Master Planning for Building-Automation Systems and Controls Designing and specifying a building automation system begins with a careful assessment of the application, the owner’s requirements, and the operating staff. This article presents a cogent and unbiased perspective on open vs. proprietary systems, lifecycle economics, and realistic projections for O&M as part of a master-planning perspective on BAS.

Codes & Standards:
National Electric Code
If there’s one thing that CSE readers turn to CSE to, it’s updates and insights on codes and standards. What’s going on with the NEC?

ME Roundtable: Power Quality in Troubled Grids
The hot summers of the 21st century are increasing cooling loads enough to stress power grids. In metropolitan areas, engineers are working hard to enhance standby power systems and power conditioning systems to ensure uptime for data centers and other mission critical facilities. The insights of a panel of experienced professional engineers on how to remain trouble-free on troubled grids will be a must read in 2008.

Equipment Lifecycles: Boilers and Boiler Controls
In addition to their capacity for heating with steam or hot water, boilers represent hazards such as carbon monoxide, explosion, and gas leaks. This issue of Equipment Lifecycle looks at boiler-system design from the perspective of long and SAFE service life.

May Features: Feature: Data Center Fire Suppression
The financial and mission-critical nature of data centers make early fire detection essential and suppression such that the data centers remain unharmed. This article provides how-to guidance for designing chemical-based (non-sprinkler) fire suppression systems for data centers. Author: Sam Salwan, PE, senior associate, Environmental Systems Design, Chicago, Ill.

Feature: Mentoring Series: HVAC
The HVAC installment of a six-part series on training and mentoring engineers. Imparting ethics, values, and technical instruction, this series aims to “train the trainers” and “mentor the mentors” to provide quality leadership and instruction to young engineers. Author: Tim Scruby, PE, senior engineer, Facility Dynamics Engineering, Afton, Va.

Schools represent one of largest new-construction and renovation markets and place where future generations are educated and molded into citizens. So let’s make schools the best examples of engineering design for health, comfort, and environmental sustainability. Let’s make schools a place where future engineers are inspired. Author: Amara Rozgus, senior editor and manager of e-content

Expo Spotlight: NFPA Preview
A summary of new and refined products being exhibited at the 2008 NFPA expo in Las Vegas.

Expo Spotlight: LightFair Preview
What new or improved products will be on display at Light Fair, taking place in Las Vegas in 2008? From lighting controls to LEDs, this preview promises and illuminating reading experience.

Codes & Standards: NFPA Fire Codes Update
A summary of anticipated updates to NFPA fire-safety codes.

Codes & Standards: Specification Guide
Directories and

Equipment Lifecycles: Uninterruptible Power Supplies
Given the criticality of uptime in modern times, the long-term considerations of UPS are paramount. Engineers need to look beyond the UPS itself and design phase to ensure the UPS will run when its needed.

ME Roundtable: Wireless Controls
Wireless controls are a promising emerging technology that has sufficient installations now to merit a healthy discussion of the benefits and challenges of these systems and real-world design and specification guidance.

June Features Feature: Engineering for Mega Projects
Billion-dollar buildings covering acres of land or unimaginable heights. These are the mega projects of today that require massive engineering, commissioning, and management resources. Author: Scott Siddens, CSE Senior Editor

Feaure: Retail Spaces: HVAC, Lighting, Fire, Electrical
Shopping malls and multi-use projects create spaces for stores, and each store is individually “fitted out” to the tenant’s specifications. Some incoming stores are green, such as The Gap, and others are wild, like Urban Outfitters. Tenant fit-outs are fun but challenging projects involving lighting, fire, HVAC, and plumbing. Author: Matt Lininger, PE, Graef Anhalt Schloemer & Associates, Milwaukee, WI

Feaure: Catastrophe Planning for Hospitals
What happens if an airplane crashes into a hospital? Or if hurricanes, fires, tornadoes, floods, and earthquakes strike a hospital's location? Lessons learned the hard way motivate engineers to push hospital owners to do things right BEFORE catastrophes happen. Author: Michael Sheerin, PE, Director for Healthcare Engineering, TLC Engineering for Architects, Orlando, FL

Codes & Standards: National Electric Code for Healthcare: The power requirements for healthcare facilities include life-and-death patient systems, highly sensitive and expensive equipment, and data centers. What special provisions are in the new 2008 National Electric Code?

Equipment Lifecycles: Lighting Controls: When selecting lighting controls, energy standards have to be met, but so do owner requirements and maintainability issues.

Expo Spotlight: ASHE Healthcare Preview: A summary of new and refined products being exhibited at the ASHE

M/E Roundtable: Urban water conservation practices such as storm water and gray water require planning and careful discussions with building owners.

Pure Power Supplement

Critical Operations Power Systems
The 2008 National Electrical Code includes Article 708 to fill the gaps in emergency operations power systems standards. Product Focus: Generators, switchgear and switchboard, transfer switches, UPS, power monitoring and metering systems, building automation systems

Grounding from the Ground Up
Raising awareness about the realities of grounding and its environmental effects. Product Focus: Power distribution systems, grounding systems

Arc-Resistant Switchgear
This equipment has come a long way in the last few years and can eliminate many of the problems associated with arcing faults. Product Focus: Medium-voltage switchgear, power metering, and monitoring systems

Bonus Distribution

July Features

Feature: Control Strategies for Comfort, IAQ, and Energy Performance Control systems that rely on fixed setpoints to achieve stable operation typically result in higher energy costs than systems operating with variable setpoints. For example, having the supply air temperature or the chilled-water supply temperature fluctuate with the needs of occupants or with laboratory use, can save energy and improve comfort and overall system performance. This article addresses the basic methods of resetting setpoints to match the actual building or zone demand, and our experience in commissioning systems with demand-based resets to ensure that they work. Author: Reinhard Seidl, PE, principal, Taylor Engineering, Alameda, CA

Feature: Engineering for Hazardous Environments
In some industrial environments, special precautions must be taken to prevent explosions. This article provides how-to guidance. Author: Jeff Heinemann, EIT, Electrical Engineer, and Jaron Vande Hoef, PE, Senior Project Engineer, both of Interstates Engineering, Sioux Center, IA

Feature: Back to Basics: Specifying Motors and Drives
With motors and drives advancing as they have in terms of equipment design and construction, it’s dark humor that fans and pumps are still being wired to run backward, that VFD aren’t being integrated well with building automation systems, and that loads aren’t being matched well to equipment. So, it’s back to basics for veterans and novices alike. Author: Syed M. Peeran, PE, Ph.D., Senior Electrical Engineer, Camp Dresser & McKee, Inc., Cambridge, MA


Codes & Standards: ASHRAE 189 %%MDASSML%% High Performance Green Buildings: The first standard for green buildings (LEED is a rating system) was developed jointly by ASHRAE and the U.S. Green Building Council. This is a summary of its important characteristics and how they are playing out in the field.

Equipment Lifecycles: Smoke and Fire Detectors: A description of the selection, installation, integration, operation, and maintenance considerations that need to be considered during the DESIGN PHASE for construction and renovation projects. Author: AJ Sevast, SET, Consultant, RJA Group, Greenwood Village, CO

M/E Roundtable: On-Site Power: What options are best for standby power systems for given applications? Are renewable energy systems such as photovoltaic panels and microturbines available yet at reasonable prices and reliability? Is cogen making a comeback? A panel of engineers share their experiences and projects on onsite power systems.

SPECIAL ADVERTISING SECTION: Introducing the CSE 40 Under 40
The candidates are in. The judges have decided. The 40 most accomplished engineers in the buildings industry who are under the age of 40 will be honored in a special advertising section in the July issue. Contact your sales rep for a special promotional opportunity for what will be a highly read installment with a long-lasting shelf life.

August Features
Feature: Green Retrofit of a Heritage Building
Take a building constructed more than 100 years ago and rebuild its interior, including mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire systems, and do all this in an environmentally friendly manner. Oh, and the firm doing the engineering is the firm that’s occupying the building. Now that’s a case study!

Feature: Software for Engineering Design and Modeling
A review of the software issues and products facing engineers in electrical, HVAC, fire, and plumbing. Issues include BIM, lifecycle assessment, selecting an appropriate model, CFD, and keeping software up to date.

Special Section: Giants 100 and Green Top 20
CSE’s annual Giants 100 Report lists the largest engineering firms providing mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) engineering services. NEW in 2008 is the Green Top 20 Report detailing the engineering firms that “walk the talk” on sustainability by greening their buildings and business processes.


ME Roundtable:
Uptime is all the time and the greener the better. Energy efficiency and reliability are becoming requirements as energy costs have begun to drive equipment selection. What are the market conditions, codes, standards, and regulations driving uptime up and energy use down?

Equipment Lifecycles:
Electrical distribution infrastructure cannot be dismissed by designers and specifiers. Fire codes as well as owner cost and flexibility requirements, not to mention maintainability, have huge sway on first costs and lifecycle costs.

Codes & Standards:
Few would disagree that ASHRAE’s standard for indoor air quality for commercial buildings is complex. And, 62.1 is on “continuous maintenance,” so it is always changing. Coming off the ASHRAE Summer Meeting, what do CSE readers need to know about 62.1?

Consulting-Specifying Engineer's Product of the Year (POY) contest is the premier award for new products in the HVAC, fire, electrical, and...
Consulting-Specifying Engineer magazine is dedicated to encouraging and recognizing the most talented young individuals...
The MEP Giants program lists the top mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire protection engineering firms in the United States.
Exploring fire pumps and systems; Lighting energy codes; Salary survey; Changes to NFPA 20
How to use IPD; 2017 Commissioning Giants; CFDs and harmonic mitigation; Eight steps to determine plumbing system requirements
2017 MEP Giants; Mergers and acquisitions report; ASHRAE 62.1; LEED v4 updates and tips; Understanding overcurrent protection
Power system design for high-performance buildings; mitigating arc flash hazards
Transformers; Electrical system design; Selecting and sizing transformers; Grounded and ungrounded system design, Paralleling generator systems
Commissioning electrical systems; Designing emergency and standby generator systems; VFDs in high-performance buildings
As brand protection manager for Eaton’s Electrical Sector, Tom Grace oversees counterfeit awareness...
Amara Rozgus is chief editor and content manager of Consulting-Specifier Engineer magazine.
IEEE power industry experts bring their combined experience in the electrical power industry...
Michael Heinsdorf, P.E., LEED AP, CDT is an Engineering Specification Writer at ARCOM MasterSpec.
Automation Engineer; Wood Group
System Integrator; Cross Integrated Systems Group
Fire & Life Safety Engineer; Technip USA Inc.
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
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