Abstract: Energy Efficiency and Architectural Programming

National Renewable Energy Laboratory

Modern research facilities provide usable space for laboratories, laboratory support areas, offices, and interactive spaces for formal and informal gatherings. The special equipment and environments required for research make these facilities complex and expensive to build and operate. Complying with building codes and considering building standards are part of the architectural programming process. The research organization priorities will set the tone for the incorporation of the energy-efficiency measures (EEMs) for the facility. It is important that the facility be able to accommodate changes in use by including flexibility in the original design. However, the facility's near-term energy use must not be overlooked even though the facility may plan for larger system capacity in the future. Architectural arrangements that provide laboratory isolation can result in energy efficiency benefits by using a design concept that includes modular degrees of isolation for the required controlled environments. The modular research laboratory provides an opportunity to arrange the environmental conditioning systems efficiently. Utility service coordination, by providing orderly pathways and routing, will reduce energy use by streamlining their layout and configuration. Minienvironments can reduce energy consumption greatly with their ability to confine energy-intense environments to small volumes.


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