Due to increased equipment, process, and ventilation demands, labs have higher energy and water demands than the average building. Sustainable lab operations is being given strong consideration by government agencies and universities to effectively reduce emissions and decrease energy use. The federal government has now adopted legislation around energy efficiency and renewable energy targets for federal buildings, including labs.
Beyond sustainability and energy efficiency, these buildings have to work and function within it’s intended purpose. For some of our more technical buildings that include FDA certified laboratories, temperature and moisture levels are constantly monitored, variations outside the protocol for a long period of time threaten the lab’s credentials and work.
Laboratory and highly technical buildings require constant attention because of the inherent life-safety issues associated with the experimentation processes. The building infrastructure must be designed for accessibility, as is also true for all major equipment. Regular maintenance, such as filter changes and ensuring pressure relationships between spaces are maintained is a requirement we always facilitate. We have also found that through monitoring-based commissioning and automated fault detection that the life of a building and its systems can be extended.
In laboratory settings we focus on lighting, right-sizing equipment, fume hood sash management, recommissioning options with quick payback, and human engagement within the space including unplugging appliances not in use. Group14 is well versed in these highly technical and complex systems, and we are excited to see continued innovation leading to sustainable, durable, energy efficient, high-functioning laboratories.
Group14 has a deep history of laboratory experience, including the Daniel Felix Ritchie School of Engineering & Computer Science and the Knoebel Center for the Study of Aging at University of Denver, the University of Colorado Bioscience II project, the Covidien Building 7, and the Energy Systems Integration Facility at NREL.
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